Open and Affordable Textbooks

About the Open and Affordable Textbook (OAT) Grant Program

Open and Affordable Textbooks (OAT) Program

Rutgers University Libraries are committed to supporting textbook affordability efforts, promoting the use of open educational resources (OER), and empowering faculty and teaching staff to innovate their teaching through the use of open, free, or library-licensed materials and teaching aids. In its first round in 2016-2017, this project brought an estimated savings of over $1.5 million to students at Rutgers University–Camden, Rutgers University–New Brunswick, Rutgers University–Newark, and Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences..

In 2017-2018, Rutgers University Libraries will award funding 20 full- and part-time faculty, adjuncts, part-time lecturers or other instructors, who do one (or more) of the following:

  • Adopt: Replace a traditional textbook with a free, low-cost, or open alternative
  • Re-envision: Replace a traditional textbook with articles, book excerpts, audio, or video that are licensed through the Rutgers University Libraries, open access, or freely available online
  • Create: Replace a traditional, high-cost textbook with one that they will design, author, and provide for free or at low cost to students

Dr. Petros Levounis, Chair of the Department of Psychiatry at the Rutgers New Jersey Medical School and recipient of an OAT award in 2016, describes the pedagogical benefits of the OAT project.

Why OER?

Why Open Educational Resources? These are just a few reasons why OER is transforming the educational landscape today: 

  • They are free or low cost to students 
  • They allow customization, remixing, and the ability for instructors to be more involved with their course content 
  • They often include accompanying materials, such as multimedia, lecture slides, and more 
  • You can involve your students in the creation of ancillary materials, quiz banks, and other learning tools, which deepens the engagement students have with the course content 
  • Because OER is freely available online, students can return to it as much as they choose to, enabling the possibilities of life-long learning 

For facts about textbook affordability at Rutgers University and the student perspective, click here.

For questions about eligibility, please contact a member of the OAT team.

OAT Team Members

Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences
Roberta Fitzpatrick, Associate Director, Smith Library

Rutgers University-Camden
Zara Wilkinson, Reference/Instruction Librarian, Paul Robeson Library

Rutgers University-New Brunswick
Laura Mullen, Behavioral Sciences Librarian/Open Access Specialist, Library of Science and Medicine
Laura Palumbo, Chemistry & Physics Librarian, Library of Science and Medicine (on sabbatical Fall 2017)
Lily Todorinova, Undergraduate Experience Librarian, Douglass Library (Chair)

Rutgers University-Newark
Bonnie Fong, Physical Sciences Librarian/Head of Emerging Technologies, Dana Library