Grant enables online education


Denis Perez / The Advocate

Behavioral science major James Gerasty works on a computer in the Library and Learning Resource Center.

By Janet Lira Gonzalez, Advocate Staff

A modernized system that will allow students and faculty members access to free course material for their classes, using online education resources (OER) is closer to becoming a reality.

Beth Goehring, president of the Academic Senate, is charged with ensuring the project’s success.

Goehring was given a budget of $100,000 for the website which she said “will be divided between 3 years ($33,333 per year).”

She said the money is anticipated to be used by the college to hire a qualified professional to find and research course content for required classes.

Students are excited to hear they can have another resource for their classes, especially students who do not receive financial aid.

The program is another way for students to save more money.

“I don’t get financial aid, so if teachers assign us material online, it be a lot easier on me,” business and administration major Austin Jilles said.

Since providing access to OER is still in a work in progress, not all the material that has been accessible has been college level.

However, teachers who do find appropriate material can upload it with ease to their web-based Canvas shells.

Streamlining the process will give students easy access to instructional material teachers can easily implement that best suits their class at no extra cost.

“OER would have been nice to have for my classes because I could have access to readings my teachers actually thought were important,” biology major Nestor Tuazon said.
“So I can get the most out of the class.”

Many book publishers give faculty access to instructional attachments from course books, like chapter slides and test bank materials.

OER, even though they will be helpful to students, it does not provide other instructional material.

Goehring said, “Faculty will need to find additional resources beyond the OER materials to support student learning.”

No release date has been set for use of OER funds as of yet.