Open to all post-secondary institutions in British Columbia.

Update

In light of the financial constraints being faced by B.C.’s post-secondary institutions during the current pandemic, BCcampus has decided to remove the requirement that applicants must secure matching funds from their institutions, equal to the grant total.

If an applicant’s institution is willing and able to provide in-kind and/or financial contributions to their proposed project, this information should be included in the grant application.

Application form

Since 2012, the Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills and Training has funded B.C. open education initiatives and tasked BCcampus with managing them. BCcampus’ goal is to provide flexible and affordable access to post-secondary learning resources in B.C. by making available openly-licensed textbooks that align with the most highly enrolled first- and second-year undergraduate subject areas, as well as with select skills-training and trades subject areas.

BCcampus continues to advance the province’s open and affordable education vision by working closely with B.C.’s post-secondary institutions to not only continue building the B.C. Open Textbook Collection, but also to sustain open educational awareness and practices on campus.

With financial support from the Hewlett Foundation, BCcampus Open Education will broaden those efforts in three key ways:

  1. Support the development of engaging, interactive open educational resources (OER) that replace or supplement commercial resources used by faculty.
  2. Encourage faculty to incorporate open educational practices (OEP) into their teaching.
  3. Consider how OEP and OER might fit into an institution’s strategy on teaching, learning, and scholarship, and what steps can be taken to begin or continue this process.

What is an open educational resource?
Open educational resources (OER) are freely accessible, openly licensed documents and media used for teaching, learning, and assessing, as well as for research purposes.

What is an open textbook?
An open textbook is one released with an open-copyright licence and made available online to be freely used by students, teachers, and members of the public. Print-on-demand copies are also made available at cost.

What is open educational practice?
Open educational practice (OEP) — also known as open pedagogy — is the use of open educational resources (OER) to support learning, or the open sharing of teaching practices, with a goal of improving education and training at the institutional, professional, and individual level.

What is open strategy?
Open strategy is the application of open educational practice and resources at the institutional strategic level. For an example of open strategy, see the Carey, Davis, Ferreras, and Porter (2015) discussion paper on steps taken by Kwantlen Polytechnic University in their Open Studies Plan.

Synopsis

The Open Education Sustainability Grant for Institutions call for proposals is intended for British Columbia post-secondary institutions wishing to improve the sustainability of current open educational practices, resources, support, and training on their campuses. Examples of how these funds might be used include:

  • Awareness building
  • Helpdesk support specific to open education
  • Open pedagogy
  • Open policy
  • Open publishing support or services (new creations or adaptations)
  • Pressbooks support and training
  • Workshops for instructors on how to use or adopt OER

Two grants of $32,250 each will be offered.

Examples of Grant Recipients and Their Proposed Projects

  • Camosun College: Establish the Open Education Demonstration Initiative (OEDI), which will bring together a team of up to 10 staff — including librarians, educational technologists, curriculum developers, and specialists in adaptive technology and indigenization — to redevelop 10 courses using open educational resources (OER) and open educational practices (OEP) over a 12–18 month period.
  • Capilano University: Create four new OER Fellow positions, each tasked with promoting awareness and increasing the utilization of open textbooks and OER. OER Fellow positions will be targeted specifically in the four new baccalaureate degree programs, where maximum benefit can be realized due to high enrolment (Bachelor of Science, Bachelor of Arts with a major in psychology, Bachelor of Arts with a major in English, and Bachelor of Human Kinetics).
  • Justice Institute of B.C.: Host two Open Education Showcases and a professional development day; create an open education website; facilitate a criminology ancillary sprint to complement the upcoming criminology book from KPU.
  • Kwantlen Polytechnic University: Host an annual OER Institute; develop a LaTeX support service and graphic design and layout support; create a pre-publication peer-review program; develop a question bank sprint guide.

Application Process

This grant is currently open for submissions. Please send the application form to opentext@bccampus.ca by May 31, 2020.

While the application form indicates the required, basic information, those wishing to submit more details may attach appendices. The selection committee looks for proposals that are well written and specifically address the guidelines. Other application items to note include:

  • The proposal should be submitted by a lead representative chosen for the project
  • The proposal must include a letter of support for the proposed project plan from a member of the institution’s senior administration

Criteria for Successful Proposals

Successful proposals must meet the following criteria:

  • Exhibit characteristics of quality teaching and learning, such as alignment with learning outcomes or curriculum guidelines
  • Demonstrate sustainability and cost-effectiveness
  • Describe the publishing support that will be provided for OER authors, including specific roles (e.g., copy editors, book layout, Pressbooks support)
  • Identify deliverables and their due dates
  • Include a budget documenting the use of the funding being requested
  • Include a timeline
  • Include a letter of support from a member of your institution’s senior administration

Grant proposals are also evaluated for how they might:

Funding Requirements

Grantees must submit interim and final reports regarding the open educational activities resulting from this grant, such as:

  • Open textbook (or other OER) creation or adaptation
  • Workshops, training, and other events related to open education
  • Release time for a faculty or staff member to organize open educational events
  • Release time for a faculty or staff member to develop open educational support materials or systems
  • Release time for a staff member to investigate and track open textbook or other OER adoption or usage on campus
  • Release time for a faculty or staff member to explore how OEP and OER might match an institution’s strategy on teaching, learning, and scholarship
  • Stipends for faculty interested in reviewing, curating, adopting, or adapting an open textbook or other open educational resource

In addition, grantees must:

  • Complete deliverables on time
  • Follow sound open publishing practices for all OER created or adapted with these funds — it is highly recommended that grantees identify members of the OER publishing support team prior to soliciting authors
  • Agree to and participate in an interview about the project

Review and Selection Process

Evaluation, selection, and awards are determined by an internal review committee against the Evaluation Criteria.

If you have questions, please email opentext@bccampus.ca.