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February 2023

SCU Library and Learning Commons

SCU Library and Learning Commons

Santa Clara University Shares $1.5M Department of Education Grant to Increase Access to Open Textbooks

SANTA CLARA, Calif., Feb. 15, 2023—Santa Clara University is partnering on a $1.5 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education to lead a three-year initiative supporting the creation and use of open educational resources (OER) across four California private institutions.

OER are teaching and learning materials such as textbooks, course materials, or multimedia content, which are free of cost and access barriers, and provide legal permission for open use. Replacing commercial course materials with these new OER has the potential to save at least 6,000 students more than $500,000 in the first year of adoption alone.

The grant, titled  “Open Educational Resources (OER) for Social Justice at Four California Catholic Colleges & Universities,” seeks to promote student success, address gaps in the open textbook marketplace, and improve collaboration and dissemination of open textbooks across relevant university consortia. 

Librarians from Santa Clara, Loyola Marymount University (LMU), Saint Mary’s College of California, and the University of San Francisco will use the funds to recruit, incentivize, and prepare up to 12 faculty teams to adapt, create, and publish OER. The materials will integrate diverse, equitable, inclusive, and anti-racist resources into high-enrollment courses across multiple disciplines.

“This project is critically aligned with the University Library’s strategic goals related to social justice, diversity, equity, and inclusion” said Nicole Branch, dean of the Santa Clara University Library. “This grant will integrate the Jesuit values of Santa Clara University with curricular materials for our local student body and our global community.”

Ultimately, the project will reduce costs for students enrolled in courses using OER materials, increase faculty capacity to create and promote OER in their disciplines, and add new content to the growing body of OER that can be adapted and freely used by educators.

 “The collaborative work of four private, Catholic university libraries will empower faculty to create new mission-driven, social justice-oriented open content in support of our universities’ curricula across a variety of disciplines,” said Kristine Brancolini, dean of the William H. Hannon Library at LMU. “The output of this grant project will also be amplified through information sharing and professional development with the 110+ private institutions of higher education and research library members of the Statewide California Electronic Library Consortium (SCELC).”  

The William H. Hannon Library at LMU will administer the grant in collaboration with an inter-institutional project team of librarians from all four institutions.  

Information sessions and a call for faculty applicants across all four institutions will be announced later in spring semester 2023. For more information about this project, contact Lev Rickards, assistant dean for collections & scholarly communication, at or call 408-554-5429.

About Santa Clara University Library
The Santa Clara University Library aspires to be an exemplary social justice library, serving as a leader in applying principles of diversity, equity, and inclusion. Through reciprocal partnerships, we transform our collections, services, programs, and spaces to create a more just and equitable world. For more information, visit the library website

Media Contact
Deborah Lohse | SCU Media Communications | | 408-554-5121


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