Northern Virginia Community College’s Extended Learning Institute (ELI) is currently being showcased on the OpenCourseware Consortium website for their OER-based General Education Project. The OpenCourseWare Consortium is a worldwide community of higher education institutions and associated organizations “committed to advancing open education and its impact on global education.” NVCC’s OER-Based General Education Project utilizes free and/or open courses materials to deliver a high quality learning experience and lead to a General Studies Certificate and satisfy the first year of the Associate of Science Degree. The project was funded through a 2013 College Innovation Fund grant received from the Virginia Community College System.

Dr. Preston Davis, Director of Instruction at Northern Virginia Community College’s Extended Learning Institute, and his staff of faculty, librarians, and instructional designers used the grant funds not just to reduce costs, but also to create greater awareness of OER among faculty at NVCC and, most importantly,  improve teaching and learning through the use of engaging new OER content. —
Currently, the Gen Ed OER project offers twelve courses that have no course material or textbook costs. The courses are ART 101 and 102, ENGLISH 111,112,125, and 251, HISTORY 121, 122, and 262, MATH 151, PHYSICS 201 and 202, and STUDENT DEVELOPMENT 100. A second CIF grant awarded to NVCC in 2014 will allow the college to develop OER for additional second year courses in order to offer a General Education degree with no textbook costs.

Watch the video below to hear the ELI  team talk the project.