The Library is now providing a new service to faculty: Pressbooks. Pressbooks is an open book publishing software that supports faculty in creating globally-accessible Open Educational Resources (OER). This is part of the ongoing strategy by the Library to support Open Educational Resources and Open Pedagogical Practices. The Library Publishing Project is focused on the creation of materials that are free, reflective of our students, and feature their direct input and experiences as part of their learning process.
The Library Publishing Project differs significantly from a traditional university press, in that the products of the project are freely available worldwide to spread equitable and accessible learning materials. Because of this, the traditional funding models and workflows a university or academic press uses do not apply.
The Library Publishing Project has three main goals.
The Library Publishing Project supports two main areas of open publishing.
With traditional book publishing, a faculty member or a group of faculty can create an open textbook. These projects can be grant or university funded to support the labor involved in creating the resource. The library will work with faculty members on creating a project plan and an agreement that confirms the project aligns with the Library Publishing Project’s goals.
The library will also provide a base level of support in helping navigate the Pressbooks platform and provide some simple publishing services, such as DOI minting. Funding from either a grant or the university would be required to cover outsourced copyediting via Scribe, paying peer reviewers and sensitivity readers, and other miscellaneous costs included in publishing open textbooks.
The second method has a lower initial cost and is more integrated with teaching. Open Pedagogy is a teaching style that emphasizes the co-creation of course materials with students via certain techniques such as non-disposable assignments. The library will help guide interested faculty members in setting up projects like these, covering issues such as student consent, curation of the created materials, and integrating Pressbooks into the course.
Faculty will work primarily with the Open Education Librarian and COLTT to set up and design relevant projects for their courses. This approach to creating OER leverages the Library's proximity to the teaching process in a way that a traditional press never could. It creates materials that are reflective of our student population and relevant to their educational needs.
At regular intervals, the projects would be cleaned up and released as a single “final” edition. The projects would continue as part of course instruction, and subsequent editions could be released over time. This method could also encompass grant funded digital collections projects that require learning materials as deliverables, similar to the RGV Primary Source Guides project headed by Dr. Stephanie Anckle. To learn more visit our Teaching with Open Pedagogy webpage.
Through the Library Publishing Project, the University Library can offer support on a variety of topics including.
To discuss any of these topics please fill out the Request a Consultation form and a librarian will reach out to answer your questions.