Today, SPARC released the OER State Policy Playbook, a new resource to support state-level advocacy in the U.S. The Playbook provides policy recommendations for state legislators interested in tackling college affordability through Open Educational Resources (OER). Our partners at Creative Commons USA released a companion resource, the OER State Legislative Guide, which provides detailed commentary on existing legislation.
The use of OER has already resulted in significant student savings and these savings are projected to rise. As state legislators look for state policies to decrease college costs, OER’s strong track record has proven to be an appealing solution with nearly half of all states introducing OER legislation in recent years. States have the ability to increase the use of OER at institutions of higher education through resources, incentives, and policy frameworks.
As academic libraries increasingly become the go-to OER experts on campus, librarians are well positioned to provide state lawmakers, government relations offices, and administrators with recommendations on OER state policy. This resource is intended to be given directly to legislators, state policy leaders, and university government relations officers. The recommendations can act as a framework for someone new to OER or be used to update legislation that has been filed in previous sessions. The Playbook also includes tips and other language to consider when writing OER policy.
As legislative sessions kick off in 2018, we hope the OER State Policy Playbook will be used as a resource to make attending and completing college a reality for people across the country. To stay up to date on legislative activity in your state, follow SPARC’s OER State Policy Tracker. SPARC member libraries are also encouraged to reach out to our open education team for advice on state-level OER policy strategy or analysis.