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MSU Denver faculty have a wealth of experience implementing OER across a wide variety of courses. Read their success stories and testimonials below.
Assistant Professor, Marketing
I participated in a course redesign with the Center for Teaching, Learning, and Development for the Principles of Marketing business core course. During the process I incorporated OER materials to substitute the use of a paid textbook. Feedback from students state that they appreciate having a no-cost alternative, day 1 access to course materials, not having to carry around a textbook, and engage more with the material as it is tailored to learning objectives, and course assignments.
With support from the first MSU Denver state OER grant, Dr. Ann Diker created an OER resource for Nutrition 2040 using the Libretexts platform. She was able to start with an existing resource and substantially updated it to include references and the most recent nutrition guidance. Dr. Diker also tightened the focus of the book to topics covered in the course. Her resource is used across all sections of NUT 2040, impacting over a thousand MSU Denver students each year.
Associate Professor, Mathematics
Dr. Ben Dyhr has created an OER course for MTH 1080 that is now used across all sections of the course. This course development included the creation of online homework within Canvas. Dr. Dyhr is also contributing to the Statistics Group’s development of OER sections for MTH 1210.
Associate Professor, Communication Studies, Director of Faculty Affairs
The process of researching for an OER resource and implementing it into our COMM 1010 (Presentation Speaking) course was not only extremely simple, but it was immensely rewarding. Each semester we are able to save MSU Denver students tens of thousands of dollars that would normally be spent on the course textbook. Now, not only do they have a free resource for learning but the textbook itself has been integrated seamlessly into the course, making for engaging and effective experiences for the students and the instructor.
Associate Professor, Communication Studies
Dr. Brenden Kendall created COMM 1100 using the best available OER textbook, saving almost 1500 MSU Denver students up to $90,000 a year. Dr. Kendall is spending his Fall 2022 sabbatical developing a new OER textbook for that course. Hear his inspiring story in this video:
Analytical & Physical Chemistry Laboratory Supervisor
Dr. Alycia Palmer has developed OER resources for all five of the lab courses that she teaches so that students are not required to purchase a laboratory manual. Not only has this reduced the cost to students, but it also reduces the need for printed materials, saving paper and resources. Students may access all lab content at their lab stations, including OER experimental procedures and Excel templates. Students also have access before each experiment to videos that explain instrumentation and procedures. This OER content especially helped during the COVID-19 pandemic when students were working in cohorts and had reduced time during the lab. Students reported that having access to the pre-laboratory lecture and procedure ahead of the lab period reduced their anxiety because they were able to watch segments multiple times and read through the procedure until they had a good understanding. Using OER content has also meant that each procedure was highly adaptable, which was essential for meeting students where they are in challenging times.
Associate Professor, Chemistry and Biochemistry
Dr. Emily Ragan developed an fully OER online course for General Chemistry in 2015, which uses OpenStax Chemistry: Atoms First 2e, PhET simulations, and extensive homework and quiz problems in the learning management system. She enjoys using an OER textbook with reading assignments in hypothesis for Biochemistry II. Since fall 2021 students in Biochemistry II update a Wikipedia entry on a protein to connect biochemistry learning to a wider audience.
Assistant Professor, Secondary Education
I’m proud that I have never asked my students at MSU Denver to purchase a textbook for any of my courses. Having been part of the OER FLC has allowed me to include more and different types of OER into my courses, making them richer and rigorous. Using OER gives the flexibility to meet and grow my students academically without the constraints of a mass produced textbook/software. Moreover, taking away the financial burden of textbooks advances the accessibility of higher education!
Katie turned to using OER for BVG 1910: Intro to Homebrewing & Fermentation as she was re-designing the course and teaching it for the first time. While there aren’t many traditional OER materials for a topic such as homebrewing, the OER training helped her discover textbook alternatives, book chapters, journal articles, and educational videos to use in class. There’s something new every day, and keeping costs down for students is a huge plus!
Are you a MSU Denver faculty member who would like your OER success story featured on this page? Let us know by emailing OER Coordinator, Emily Ragan.