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RUSA Passes Resolution to Support OAT Project

June 19, 2017
OAT Project Logo

The resolution "supports the expansion of the Open and Affordable Textbooks Project to permit more grantees and the launch of additional Open Educational Resource initiatives to supplement this grant program."

We are delighted to announce that the Rutgers University Student Assembly recently passed a resolution in support of the Open and Affordable Textbooks (OAT) Project.

Developed and administered by Rutgers University Libraries, the OAT Project awarded thirty-two $1000 grants to Rutgers faculty and instructors in spring 2016 to help them develop free or low-cost alternatives to traditional course materials. The projected cost savings to students across the university was nearly $1.6 million within one year.

We are deeply grateful for the support of RUSA and look forward to sharing more news in the coming weeks about our continued efforts to address the issue of textbook affordability for Rutgers students.

Read the full text of the resolution below or download it as a PDF.

RUSA Resolution: S17
Authors: Christopher Markosian, Lily Todorinova, April Nicklaus
Sponsor: Executive Board

Resolution for RUSA to Support the Open and Affordable Textbooks Project

Whereas, nearly one-third of New Jersey undergraduate students who receive financial aid said that they had to use their financial aid to pay for textbooks, costing about 311 dollars per semester on average; and [1]

Whereas, textbook prices have risen 73 percent since 2006, which is 4 times the rate of inflation; and [1]

Whereas, the average Rutgers student spends over 1,500 dollars on textbooks each year (300 dollars per year greater than the national average); and [2]

Whereas, nearly 50 percent of all students said that the cost of textbooks influenced which classes or how many classes they take each semester; and [3]

Whereas, 82 percent of students felt they would do significantly better in a course if the textbook were available free online and buying a hard copy were optional. [3]

Whereas, the Open and Affordable Textbooks Project by Rutgers University Libraries offers $1,000 grants to Rutgers faculty and instructors across the system who choose to adopt, remix, or create a free or low cost textbook, as an alternative to traditional course materials. [4]

Be it hereby resolved, the Rutgers University Student Assembly endorses the Open and Affordable Textbooks Project; and

Be it hereby further resolved, the Rutgers University Student Assembly supports the expansion of the Open and Affordable Textbooks Project to permit more grantees and the launch of additional Open Educational Resource initiatives to supplement this grant program.

[1] http://njpirgstudents.org/updates-and-reports/covering-the-cost
[2] http://njpirgstudents.org/updates-and-reports/access-denied
[3] http://njpirgstudents.org/updates-and-reports/fixing-the-broken-textbook-market
[4] http://www.libraries.rutgers.edu/open-textbooks