UNH OER Ambassador Pilot

UNH Open Educational Resources (OER) Ambassador Pilot

Selection of OER Ambassadors has been completed for 2015. 

Pilot Goals

The purpose of the OER Grant Pilot was to identify, support and evaluate in a variety of UNH courses or modules the use of OER or resources currently available on a subscription basis through the UNH Library. These resources or subscriptions replaced commercial instructional resources including textbooks. An emphasis of this pilot was to maximize student learning outcomes while reducing or eliminating the cost of instructional materials. Large enrollment and gateway courses from diverse departments were given priority, but the review committee also considered creative projects in which faculty used OER or UNH Library resources to improve the quality of the student learning experience while lowering student costs. The intent of the pilot was also to establish and recognize a cohort of UNH OER Ambassadors – academic leaders who were committed to improving the student learning experience through the use of OER and who were eager to share their experiences with colleagues and peers throughout the university. To incentivize faculty to review their course or course modules, and to evaluate the time and support required, we offered a summer grant in the amount of $3000.

UNH OER Ambassadors were expected to perform the required work during Summer 2015 in close collaboration with a team of faculty/staff from the Library and UNH IT Academic Technology. The Pilot was evaluated in Spring 2016 using the following evaluation criteria:

  • Savings realized by students enrolled in the course that adopted OER/Library resources
  • Student learning outcomes for the OER pilot courses comparable to or better than previous outcomes
  • Faculty success in identifying and incorporating OER materials
  • Faculty satisfaction with the support and services offered through the OER pilot (through survey and focus group)
  • Student satisfaction with the course/modules materials (add question to course evaluation and focus group)

Grant Application Process

Grantees submitted their application via an online form by March 30, 2015.  Indication that the proposer’s department chair and school/college dean support his/her application was required.

The proposals were reviewed by a committee consisting of representatives from the faculty (appointed by the Faculty Senate), the Provost’s Office, associate deans, the Library, and UNH IT Academic Technology.

The committee selected UNH OER Ambassadors based on the following criteria:

  • Historical course or module enrollment – total students.
  • Clarity of goals and overall impact of the project.
  • Clarity of plan for evaluating student progress.
  • Availability of OER materials for course or module.
  • Availability of instructor to participate in the entire project (Spring 2015 – Spring 2016) and to commit to share findings of his/her experience (Spring 2016)
  • Broad representation across schools and colleges
  • Demonstrated support from Department Chair and Dean
  • Those proposals that incorporate OER into a semester-long course will be given preference

Library/Academic Technology Support

A team consisting of faculty/staff from the Library and Academic Technology consulted with and supported the UNH OER Ambassadors at no cost. The team maintained Web-based information and links to resources to assist faculty OER research for their discipline. The OER Libguide was developed to support the Ambassasdors and is available at http://libraryguides.unh.edu/oer.