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Creating open course materials

The Open and Affordable Course Materials Working Group at Queen’s has selected a number of proposals to develop and review open course materials for Queen’s courses.

The working group received great response to its call for proposals from interested faculty, both to review existing open textbooks and to author open text books.

The group selected three proposals to create an open textbook for an upcoming course/program at Queen's, with cross campus support:  

  • Peter MacPherson, Department of Pediatrics, Faculty of Health Sciences, developing The QPeds Pediatrics Textbook: An Open Textbook for Undergraduate Medical Students which could serve as the primary reference for MEDS 122 (Pediatrics and Genetics) and MEDS 444 (Pediatrics Clerkship). It would also contain content relevant to seven additional first- and second-year medical courses.
  • Ryan Martin, Physics, Engineering Physics and Astronomy, developing a new open access textbook for introductory physics, to be used in PHYS 104 and 106 (Fundamental Physics and General Physics).
  • Meghan E. Norris, Psychology, developing a textbook for PSYC204 (Applications and Careers in the Psychological Sciences).

Successful grant recipients are working with the Open and Affordable Course Materials Working Group to develop timelines, deliverables and assessment plans. Once created, these works will be shared with an appropriate open license so that others can easily adopt and use them in their courses.

The successful proposals to review an existing openly licensed, high-quality, peer-reviewed textbook are:

  • Ugurhan Berkok, Economics, reviewing Principles of Microeconomics: Saylor, by Rittenberg and Tregarthen and Principles of Microeconomics: OpenStax, by Taylor for ECON111 F (Introductory Microeconomics).
  • George Boland, Business, reviewing Intermediate Financial Accounting (Volume 1), Arnold et al and Intermediate Financial Accounting (Volume 2), Arnold et al for COMM313 F (Financial Accounting II).
  • Nancy Salay, Philosophy, reviewing forall x: An Introduction to Formal Logic, by Magnus for PHIL361 F (Introduction to Logic).

Additionally, Sidneyeve Matrix, Dan School of Drama and Music, is working with funding from eCampusOntario to adapt three existing open resources on design thinking into a single new open text suitable for her high-enrolment (700 seat) first-year post-secondary course in design thinking.

This initiative builds on a growing conversation on campus about supporting open education resources for our students.

“It is wonderful to see the faculty interest in using and producing textbooks and other course materials at no cost to students,” says Victoria Lewarne, AMS Academic Affairs Commissioner and member of the working group. “These projects come from a variety of disciplines, and this spectrum should enable our group to glean a solid understanding of requirements and needs.”

The OACM working group will also be offering a session for all faculty and students – Building and integrating open educational resources to support your teaching and learning. This practical workshop will:

  • Explore how to find and integrate openly licensed educational resources into your teaching and assignments
  • Provide an overview of available platforms to publish and share your OERs.

The workshop is scheduled for Tuesday, Feb. 13, 10-11 am in Stauffer Library, Seminar Room (121). Further information will follow. For any questions, contact open.education@queensu.ca.