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OER Task Force

Whereas, in June, 2017, the Texas legislature passed SB810: this bill made a number of modifications to the Texas education code related to the adoption and promotion of Open Educational Resources (OER) among institutions of higher education within the state. Of particular relevance are sections 35, 36, and 37 of SB810, which mandate that institutions, among other things, provide a “searchable list of courses and sections of courses that require or recommend only open educational resources.” [A PDF of the full bill is attached.]

And whereas at a recent conference devoted to OER co-hosted by DIGITX and THECB, the impact of OER was broadly noted: there is growing federal support for OER, there are granting opportunities available to study and implement OER, and the number of states enacting OER policies is increasing. Some researchers are demonstrating that OER and Zero Cost Textbook (ZCT) options can help increase retention rates as well as increase the affordability of a college degree.

And whereas UHD seeks to not only be in compliance with state and federal statute, but also recognizes the value of maintaining educational options that are affordable for its students,

Be it resolved that an OER Task Force be established to consider best practices regarding the implementation of OER/ZCT options on campus, and to recommend to the Office of the Provost steps that may be taken to enact these best practices at UHD. Subsumed within this general charge are the following queries and sub-tasks:

∙ Propose a definition of OER (Open Educational Resources) and ZCT (Zero Cost Textbook) that can be used effectively at UHD to guide our work and discussions on OER/ZCT.

∙ Assess UHD’s compliance with Texas law regarding OER and, if we are not in compliance, recommend a course of action and timeline for bringing the institution into compliance.

∙ Set targets for OER/ZCT integration at UHD, including, but not limited to, percentages of classes offered each year that are OER and/or ZCT, and number of full degree programs at UHD that can/should be offered as fully ZCT options.

∙ Recommend strategies for effectively advertising OER and ZCT options at UHD. ∙ Recommend strategies for effectively using OER and ZCT options as part of a comprehensive university recruitment and retention strategy.

∙ Survey the available resources related to OER/ZCT (including Openstax, Digitex, and others) and make recommendations regarding how to best utilize such resources at UHD, if applicable.

∙ Recommend a governance and/or administrative structure, with responsible parties, for leading and overseeing OER/ZCT implementation at UHD.

∙ Recommend resources that may be required for effective execution of OER/ZCT strategies.


∙ Recommend best practices for OER/ZCT implementation at UHD, including logistics related to faculty training and support for OER/ZCT implementation.

∙ Recommend strategies for collaborating with other UH System universities to promote OER/ZCT.

∙ Suggest any updates to existing policy, or creation of new policy statements, at UHD that are needed/required because of state statute and/or UHD practice (and suggest draft language for such policy revisions and/or statements).



August 2019 Task force formation and charge

September 2019 Task Force work begins; chair selected

December 15, 2019 Initial report on matters related to compliance with SB810 March 27, 2020 Full report with recommendations due to Office of the Provost

Task Force Membership: 13 Total Members

[Note: all faculty will be chosen by the deans following a college-wide nomination process, with preference being given to individuals with interest and/or experience in OER/ZCT]

5 Faculty Members (one from each college)

Representative from Library

Representative from CTLE

Representative from Student Body/SGA

Representative from TTLC

Representative from EM/Registrar’s Office

Representative from TAB grant initiative

Representative from Office of Sponsored Programs

Representative from IT/PeopleSoft