Open Syllabus: “Closing the OER Information Loop: 2022 Data”
From an Open Syllabus Blog Post by by
The information loop for free digital books, on the other hand, isn’t closed. There is no sale or single point of access and titles are copied and circulate freely. It’s hard, accordingly, to know what the demand side of the OER and OA ecosystems looks like. And this lack of information becomes a problem for authors and publishers (the producers) and faculty and students (the consumers). Decisions to invest time and money by faculty, funders, libraries and others in creating new titles are made without strong insight into the demand for existing ones. Adoption decisions by faculty and staff are made without much visibility into the experience of other programs, which could provide models. Both sides of the equation involve risks, that those risks are hard to mitigate.
Open Syllabus can construct this demand side information from syllabi, and so partially close the information loop. The chart above continues the story we began to tell in 2021 — one of roughly 20% annual growth in OER adoption since the early days in 2013 and 2014. That’s fast growth, but from a very low baseline. In 2014, around .2% (1 in 500) syllabi used an OER textbook in the US. By 2021, that number was around .8% or 1 in 125. 2022 data shows a drop, but current year data can be uneven due to lag in our collecting practices. You can explore all of this in detail at the new Open Syllabus Analytics.
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About Gary Price
Gary Price (firstname.lastname@example.org) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. He earned his MLIS degree from Wayne State University in Detroit. Price has won several awards including the SLA Innovations in Technology Award and Alumnus of the Year from the Wayne St. University Library and Information Science Program. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com. Gary is also the co-founder of infoDJ an innovation research consultancy supporting corporate product and business model teams with just-in-time fact and insight finding.