May 24, 2022

OER: Rice’s OpenStax College Doubles Down on Free, Online Textbooks

From Rice University:

Rice University-based publisher OpenStax College recently announced plans to more than double the number of titles in its catalog of free, online textbooks by 2015, thanks to a grant from the Laura and John Arnold Foundation (LJAF).

More than 150 colleges, universities and high schools have adopted an OpenStax textbook since the nonprofit publisher’s 2012 launch. OpenStax’s introductory textbooks for physics and sociology have been downloaded more than 70,000 times, with two new biology books and an introductory anatomy book becoming available this fall. The LJAF grant will allow OpenStax to add books in six more subjects – precalculus, chemistry, economics, U.S. history, psychology and statistics — by 2015.


OpenStax College invests more than $500,000 to develop each book. It hires the same content developers that major publishers hire, and its books are peer-reviewed by hundreds of faculty reviewers. Grants make it possible for OpenStax to offer its titles for free.

OpenStax College ultimately plans to offer books for 25 of the nation’s most-attended college courses. College students could save an estimated $750 million over five years if the publisher reaches its goal of capturing 10 percent of the market for each of the 25 books.

Read the Complete Announcement

Direct to OpenStax College Web Site

Current and Future OpenStax Titles are Linked on This Page

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.