Open Educational Resources (OER) support a love of learning by opening up worlds of knowledge and making information more accessible. OER are learning, teaching and research materials in any format and medium that reside in the public domain or have an open license, that permits free access, re-use, remixing, and redistributing by others.
At UNM, the OER initiative seeks to provide faculty members with the support they need to adopt low and no-cost textbook and class material solutions for their courses when it aligns with their instructional objectives and academic freedom as they increase access to information.
Through resources like UNM's Digital Repository, the general public can access archived materials created by UNM faculty, students, and staff. The OER Collection contains openly licensed materials educators can use in their courses. And there are also Open Access Collections, like the Black Alumni Oral History Project, comprised of ten oral history interviews of members of the UNM Black Alumni Chapter.
The Black Alumni Oral History Project was spearheaded by Barbara Brown Simmons, pictured to the left, a UNM alumna who was the first Black woman to graduate from the UNM School of Law and the first Black woman to become a member of the State Bar of New Mexico. Brown Simmons was instrumental in the creation of the Africana Studies department at UNM. She passed in 2022, but her legacy lives on in the programs and lives she touched at UNM, and through archival materials that will stay in perpetuity in UNM's Digital Repository.
UNM’s Open Educational Resource (OER) initiative seeks to provide faculty members with the support they need to adopt low and no-cost textbook and class material solutions for their courses when it aligns with their instructional objectives and academic freedom. When possible, the university would like to partner with other higher education institutions and the State of New Mexico to identify resources and support for faculty initiatives in this area.
On the university's OER website, you can join the OER Listserv, learn more about the initiative at UNM, and learn about some of the trailblazers here who are making textbooks more affordable for their students. Take for example, Professor Zach Sharp, whose textbook at this moment in time, has been downloaded over 37,000 times across the globe. You can download the book on his Digital Repository page.
And, you can check out metrics and statistics about Sharp's book at the link down below.
For faculty and students who would like to learn more about OER, you can fill out the consultation request form and meet with the University Libraries' OER Librarian.