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Monday, October 18 • 1:45pm - 2:25pm
Moving Open Education Forward in Texas: Statewide Partnerships and Strategic Initiatives

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In November 2020, the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (THECB) launched a Digital Learning Division (DLD) with the mission of providing leadership and advocacy for digital learning in higher education and promoting, sustaining, and advancing a quality digital learner experience positioning Texas as a world leader and resulting in globally competitive digitally proficient citizens. One focus of THECB and the DLD has been to facilitate the use of open instructional materials in order to encourage adoption of affordable, accessible, and flexible resources at scale.

THECB has partnered with organizations such as the Institute for the Study of Knowledge Management in Education (ISKME), OpenStax, and the Digital Higher Education Consortium of Texas (DigiTex) to scale OER work in the state. One such partnership, with ISKME and DigiTex, led to a landscape study of OER use and adoption in Texas higher education. Survey findings reveal insights into specific priorities for OER work across Texas. While a majority of institutions had OER programs and policies in place or were planning to implement OER programs and policies, there was a need for financial and procedural support for OER initiatives.

For OER use to scale, capacity building at institutions is essential. The DLD builds on a strong foundation of statewide OER initiatives to create sound infrastructures to serve institutions in this post-COVID world. In 2020, THECB was awarded Governor’s Emergency Education Relief (GEER) funding, a portion of which was dedicated to digital learning programs, including OER grants. THECB and the DLD have built on knowledge gained from state-funded OER grants and OERTX, the state OER Repository, as well as from statewide and national research, to determine GEER funds would be best utilized to build capacity at institutions wishing to initiate or grow OER programs.

This session will examine the successes that THECB has had in building and scaling OER initiatives in partnership with public and independent institutions and organizations across the state and nation. Fundamental statewide OER projects will be highlighted, such as the OERTX Repository and framework grants for OER policy and program building at institutions. Innovations that have led to successful adoption of OER in Texas, the impact of the work on students and institutions, and lessons learned from the launching of the first OER grant program in 2018 to the present will be shared. Participants will be encouraged to consider how initiatives could be adapted for their own OER advocacy.

After participating in this session, attendees will be able to:
  • Gain strategies for increasing OER awareness and adoption at a statewide level
  • Evaluate approaches for creating partnerships in order to develop high-impact OER initiatives
  • Adapt these strategies and approaches to their own OER advocacy


Kylah Torre

Program Director, Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board
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Michelle Singh

Assistant Commissioner, Digital Learning, Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board

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How to Join Live Sessions

Live sessions will be held throughout the day. Return to the session page shortly before the start time for a link to join the Zoom room. The join button will only be visible to logged in attendees. See the FAQ for more details.Live session formats include panels, presentations, discussions, and open space sessions. Most presentations and panels are recorded and posted by the next day. Discussions and open space sessions may not be recorded, so make sure to attend live.Note that live sessions begin on time, and the capacity... Read More →

Monday October 18, 2021 1:45pm - 2:25pm EDT
Room E