In April of 2019, Melanie Mark, Minister of Advanced Education, Skills and Training, announced funding of $3.26 million towards open education in British Columbia. This welcome infusion of financial support enables BCcampus to continue developing and distributing open educational resources—including open textbooks—that lower the cost of education for students while providing significant learning value.

The funding BCcampus received between 2003–2018 has made a significant impact for students in British Columbia, with total savings currently in excess of $14 million. Post-secondary institutions in B.C. have recognized the opportunities for access and affordability through the adoption of OER, and we at BCcampus believe that now is the time to further that work.

Working with institutions, stakeholders, and faculty, BCcampus will support the development of entire suites of freely available resources—including textbooks, homework systems, and ancillary tools—to replace costly commercial products in Health Education.

The primary goal is to launch Zero Textbook Cost (ZTC) programs that will lower the financial barrier to  post-secondary education for students by eliminating the cost of textbooks and other resources for their entire pathway to credential while providing faculty members with academic freedom to modify course materials to align with their curriculum.

BCcampus has identified two health programs which will benefit from being a ZTC program:


  • Health Care Assistant (HCA)
  • Primary Care Paramedic (PCP)

We are also in an exploratory phase investigating open resources for Nursing. 

Health Care Assistant 

There is a call for proposals for the development of open educational resources (OER) for: 

  • Healing 1: Caring for Individuals Experiencing Common Health Challenges
  • Healing 3: Personal Care and Assistance

This call for proposals closes on February 19, 2020. 

We are also in the process of forming a HCA OER Group. This group will be involved in advising on the development of HCA open resources. If you are interested in participating in this group, please contact Krista Lambert, Project Manager at


There is an expression of interest for the alignment of OER with nursing competencies. This expression of interest closes on February 19, 2020. 

Advisory Group

To help guide the work, BCcampus has put together a system-wide advisory group consisting of individuals familiar with the identified health programs.



Rhonda Benke

Douglas College

Katelyn Ranger

Ministry of Health

Kathy Harms

Justice Institute of British Columbia

Nirmal Dhaliwal

Kwantlen Polytechnic University

Neil Wereley

Ministry of Health

Brad Mladenovic

Simon Fraser University

Heather Hepworth

College of the Rockies


Vancouver Island University

Further Information

If you have questions about the project or ideas about OER in health please contact project manager Krista Lambert at

Download the following poster to share with colleagues, or contact us for print copies:

Health ZTC Programs – one-pager