UK Libraries is launching a second round of the Alternative Textbook Grant Program to encourage UK faculty to adopt peer-reviewed open access alternative textbooks or to create original learning materials for their courses. Faculty may apply for one of 10 grants of up to $1,500 each to implement any curriculum change required for the use of alternative textbooks.
“The favorable feedback to the first round of the program demonstrates that faculty realize the benefits and opportunities alternative textbooks bring to teaching and learning,” says Mary Beth Thomson, UK Libraries senior associate dean. “We are delighted to continue our support for faculty’s adoption and creation of alternative textbooks.”
Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that prices for college textbooks increased by 88% between 2006 and 2016. Studies indicate that the financial burden of textbooks negatively impacts student success by limiting students’ access to essential learning resources. Alternative textbooks present a proven solution to the prohibitive prices of traditional textbooks and allow faculty to customize course content in a timely and innovative manner.
Current UK faculty teaching a course in academic year 2017-18 using a commercial textbook are eligible to apply for one of the 10 grants. UK Libraries’ academic liaisons can provide faculty with assistance in identifying existing alternative textbooks and UK Libraries’ licensed information resources that are appropriate substitutes for traditional textbooks.
Proposals must be submitted via the program’s online form. Selection criteria include the strength of a statement of concern, estimated potential savings by students in the course, ability to use the alternative textbook in academic year 2017-18, and reusability beyond the initial semester. Successful applicants will be notified in Spring 2017.
Each grant recipient is required to submit a report describing the alternative textbook, the number of students impacted, estimated student savings, and an evaluation of the experience with the program. Outcomes of the program will be shared with the UK community.