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Faculty Resources: Open Access Textbooks

Resources for Faculty members at the University of Saint Mary

Open Access

An open textbook is a textbook licensed under an open copyright license and made available online to be freely used by students, teachers, and members of the public. They are available for free as online versions, and as low-cost printed versions, should students or faculty opt for these. Open textbooks are a way to significantly reduce student textbook costs while giving instructors the flexibility to reformat and customize their course material. They are an affordable, flexible alternative to traditionally-published textbooks.

Faculty may learn more about evaluating open access textbooks from these resources:

Adopting Open Access Textbooks

A self-paced course for faculty on open education and open textbooks, creative commons licenses, institutional readiness for open access resources, and how to find, evaluate, and modify open textbooks.

Open Alternative Resources Initiative of Kansas State University

The initiative’s goal is to encourage the adoption and/or development of cost saving texts for students while improving the quality of the learning process.

Open Educational Resources at the University of Kansas

In 2015 KU joined the Open Textbook Network, an alliance of higher education institutions committed to improving access, affordability, and academic success through the use of open textbooks. OER is an approach to overcoming cost and reuse barriers to the benefit of students and instructors.

Open Educational Resources at the University of Missouri 

This guide covers ways to find, create, and use Open Textbooks & Open Educational Resources


Open Access Textbook and Open Educational Resources

Want to know more about Open Access Textbooks?

"How can an amazing introductory chemistry textbook be free?"
Webinar featuring David Ball, Professor of Chemistry at Cleveland State University, and Sharon Koch, of Flat World Knowledge, a leading publisher of open textbooks.

"Why College Textbooks are so Expensive"
A student's frank perspective on college textbooks

Free Downloads

Provides access to poems, short stories, fiction and non-fiction texts.

Google Books
Use the Advanced Search to limit results to "Full View Only."

Online Books Page
Index of free books available online.

Open Culture
Collection of free e-books, audiobooks, textbooks, films, and language lessons.

Oxford Text Archive
Provides access to electronic resources for use in higher education.

Project Gutenberg
Provides access to public domain texts in downloadable form.

Open access textbook collection editable by anyone, much like Wikipedia.