Status: Open

Closing date for proposals: Aug 28, 2020
Successful submission notification date: Sept 4, 2020
Grant recipient announcement date: Sept 11, 2020
Open to institutions in British Columbia.


Since 2012, the Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills and Training has funded B.C. Open Education initiatives and tasked BCcampus with managing them. BCcampus Open Education’s goal is to provide flexible and affordable access to post-secondary learning resources in B.C. In April 2019, funding of $3.26 million for open educational resources (OER) was announced by Melanie Mark, Minister of Advanced Education, Skills and Training, at the Cascadia Open Education Summit. BCcampus has been putting this funding toward the development of OER and Zero Textbook Cost (ZTC) programs.

With the support of the Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills and Training, BCcampus will award one grant (maximum $60,000) to a B.C. institution committed to the development of a Zero Textbook Cost (ZTC) Program (Diploma or Degree) in Marketing. The institution may use the funding not only to develop pathways to a credential by adopting and adapting pre-existing OER, but also to create new OER necessary for the program. The institution will also be required to package and publish their degree paths such that other institutions from B.C. and beyond can borrow from their progress. Any learning materials created under the ZTC program must carry a Creative Commons BY licence and be available in editable form. The program proposal chosen must demonstrate significant student savings and impact across the B.C. system.

BCcampus has conducted an initial environmental scan to identify OER that aligns with a marketing curriculum (years one and two). Institutions can use this initial mapping to help identify gaps and determine alignment for their own programs.

OER in Development for ZTC Marketing

In February 2020, with financial support from the ministry, BCcampus distributed grants to B.C. institutions and faculty members for the development of OER to help fill identified gaps for marketing programs. These projects include the development of new OER in the following subjects:

  • consumer behaviour
  • marketing plan development
  • digital marketing
  • principles of marketing

Follow the link above for more information about these projects so that you may consider how adoption of these resources can contribute to the development of a ZTC marketing program at your institution.

What is a ZTC Program?

ZTC program is a set of courses in a specific program area that allows a student to earn a credential — such as an associate degree, certificate, diploma, or bachelor’s degree — with zero textbook costs by way of using open educational resources and free library materials.

What is an Open Educational Resource?

Open educational resources (OER) are freely accessible, openly licensed documents and media that are useful for teaching, learning, and assessing, as well as for research purposes.

What is an Open Textbook?

An open textbook is a textbook licensed under 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. Another definition is the open sharing of teaching practices with a goal of improving education and training at the institutional, professional, and individual level.

What Does Success Look Like?

Successful ZTC programs will empower faculty to lead the work of adopting, adapting and creating OER; develop broad-based support across the institution for using OER; and promote to students the benefits of enrolling in a ZTC program. The process of developing a ZTC program will build institutional capacity for designing clearer and more efficient pathways to credentials and connecting student learning outcomes to curriculum and pedagogy.

Expectations and Requirements of Selected Applicants

The following commitments and actions are expected of the successful applicant:

  • The institution will create a cross-functional team to oversee the work, with representation from faculty, instructional support services, library, student support services, institutional research, communications, and other personnel from units of the institution that can contribute to development of a ZTC program.
  • The institution will offer a ZTC program in marketing with at least one section of every required course taught with OER in place of proprietary textbooks.
  • The institution will commit to sharing educational materials developed through this project with the public. Specifically, the institution will employ the latest version of the Creative Commons Attribution licence (CC BY 4.0), which permits the broadest use by others, and ensure that all content is technologically open so that others may reuse and repurpose it. All files will be provided to BCcampus in an editable format.

Application Process

The application form should be completed and e-mailed to:

While the application form provides the basic information required, those wishing to submit more detail may attach appendices as required. The evaluation committee looks for proposals that are well written and specifically address the guidelines. Because proposals may include multiple institutional partners, you must designate a lead representative for the project and submit the proposal through the lead. Institutional partners should include a letter of support identifying names and roles of participants.

Criteria for Successful Proposals

Successful proposals will meet the following mandatory criteria:

  • Must not exceed $60,000 funding request from BCcampus
  • Identify the program as well as a list of courses that will utilize OER
  • Include a signed letter from the chief academic officer
  • Complete the development of a ZTC program within one year
  • Exhibit characteristics of quality teaching and learning
  • Demonstrate sustainability and cost-effectiveness
  • Demonstrate collaboration within a single institution or between two or more post-secondary institutions
  • Must release learning materials with a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which allows others to freely adapt, modify, copy and redistribute the content
  • Include a budget documenting the use of the funding being requested

The following criteria are preferred, but not mandatory. Preference will be given to proposals that:

  • Impact large numbers of students across multiple institutions 
    • So as many instructors as possible can use this resource to help their students save money, consider all courses across the province that might use this OER and include in your proposal
    • So all students identify with and feel included while learning, consider equity, diversity, and inclusion and make use of inclusive practices
  • Include the provision of resources necessary to complete the project, such as the assistance of an instructional designer, multimedia developer, librarian, and copy editor — if the applicant uses available resources, it promotes more institutional buy-in to the project and thus the potential for more adoption
  • Encourage the use of activities that embrace open pedagogies

Project Requirements

For funding to be released, grantees must:

  • Release OER with a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which allows others to freely retain, copy, modify, remix, and redistribute the content
  • Complete OER on time
  • Include all source and editable files used in creating resources (including any multimedia files) to easily enable further remixing and modifications
  • 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 any further questions, please email them to