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Thursday, October 21 • 4:00pm - 4:25pm
A Tough Nut to Crack: Developing an OER Textbook for Literature Courses

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Unlike English courses like composition, literature courses can be particularly challenging to move to OER. Literature courses typically include a variety of copyrighted texts, including films and contemporary literature. While some works in literature courses may be old enough to be in the public domain, there might not be readily available open licensed translations or edited editions available. Texas A&M University’s English department, which has successfully adapted OER for other undergraduate writing courses, was determined to find an OER solution for its introduction to literature course.

In this session, the presenters will discuss the challenges and opportunities of adapting an OER textbook for a literature course. They will explore the difficulties of incorporating readings from a diverse range of authors, including contemporary authors. While ongoing literary recovery projects are valuable parts of literary OER projects, diversifying the literary canon often includes looking at works that are not yet in the public domain in the US. At the same time, anyone creating a literature OER will need to consider the ethical implications inherent in balancing fair use, copyrighted materials, and the implications of a potential loss of revenue for contemporary authors. The presenters will describe how they abandoned a purist approach to OER and instead developed a multi-pronged approach that balanced the need to reduce financial barriers for students, include a diverse set of contemporary authors in the text, and respect copyright restraints. They did so by using both public domain texts as well as library-licensed texts selected and vetted by a committee of English instructors and librarians.

Finally, the presenters will share how partnering on OER provided new opportunities to revise the course structure and intentionally include information literacy content. The process of developing an OER textbook enabled the team to make pedagogical changes to the course, including revisions to syllabi, assignment sheets, grading rubrics, in-class activities, and the textbook itself. Similarly, collaborating on an OER textbook allowed them to use information literacy to discuss concepts such as finding literary criticism. Future plans include finding ways to engage students concerning copyright, openness, and literary works.

After participating in this session, attendees will be able to:
  • Delineate issues involved in creating OER for literature courses
  • Identify ways to achieve openness in literary educational materials through different strategies
  • Recognize the benefits of OER development for pedagogical transformation

Speakers
SL

Sarah LeMire

Coordinator of First-Year Programs, Texas A&M University Libraries
Sarah LeMire is the First Year Experience and Outreach Librarian at Texas A&M University. She is interested in information literacy instruction, assessment, scalability of instruction and outreach, and outreach to special populations, especially veterans.
KA

Kathy Anders

Graduate Studies Librarian, Texas A&M University

Overview
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Thursday October 21, 2021 4:00pm - 4:25pm EDT
Room F