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Faculty: Apply by Feb. 23 for state grants to switch to open or no-cost course materials

December 14, 2021

VCU Libraries, in support of open and affordable course materials across the VCU community, announces a new round of VIVA Open Course Grants is open for applications. These grants are designed to empower Virginia faculty with the resources and time they need to redesign courses by swapping expensive course materials for open, no cost, or library options. 

Applications are due February 23, 2022. Award notification will take place on May 20, 2022.

This program will award grants from $2,000 to $30,000 to assist faculty in adopting, adapting or creating course materials available at no cost to students, such as open educational textbooks and/or library resources. Applications that include multi-institutional partnerships are encouraged. 

More information, including the full Request for Proposals, application details, and the evaluation rubric are available on the VIVA Open Course Grants website. A list of past grant recipients can also be found on that page, including 10 projects involving VCU faculty.

Once such project is a collaboration between VCU, Old Dominion University and West Virginia University led by Jiale (Gary) Hu, Ph.D., R.N., assistant professor of nurse anesthesia. The project aims to fill a gap in existing affordable resources on patient care by creating a comprehensive open textbook and accompanying ancillaries on Crisis Resource Management (CRM) for nurse anesthesia students, medical students and anesthesiology residents.

“Crisis resource management plays a vital role in delivering safe anesthesia care,” said Hu. “We're excited to receive this highly competitive grant funding to create an open textbook with multiple ancillary materials on crisis resource management. This was our team’s first time applying for the VIVA grant, and VCU Libraries provided tremendous help in supporting the development of this winning proposal. We really appreciate all the advice, resources and contacts.”

VCU Libraries is available to assist faculty in conceptualizing their projects, completing their applications and identifying multi-institutional partners. The libraries can also support projects by serving as a project partner. Interested faculty should contact Jessica Kirschner, Open Educational Resources Librarian at kirschnerj2@vcu.edu

“VCU Libraries looks forward to supporting faculty applying to this statewide opportunity for advancing open and affordable course content in Virginia,” said Kirschner. “VCU projects have a strong history of success for this awards program, which speaks to our faculty's dedication to innovative teaching methods and focus on improving student success. We look forward to seeing another round of creative proposals from VCU faculty for these funds.”

Additional information on open and affordable course content at VCU can be found at go.vcu.edu/textbooksavings

VIVA will be hosting webinars to review the program and the application process.

Full or part-time faculty may apply. Proposals may involve one person or teams that include: teaching faculty, librarians, instructional designers, subject matter experts, editors, graphic designers, or others as needed. 

Additional questions about the grant program may be submitted to viva@gmu.edu

Proposals fall into three grant classifications: 

  • Adopt: Those who "adopt" a resource will be using existing resource(s) as-is or with minimal editorial changes.
  • Adapt: Those who "adapt" will be modifying resource(s), combining several existing resources with changes, or creating ancillaries for an existing resource. This includes projects in which curation or pre-existing material results in the creation of a new resource.
  • Create: Those who "create" OER will be creating the resource all or largely from scratch.

Awards will be evaluated by scale: Standard scale ($2,000 to $10,000) for smaller impact projects; or large scale ($10,001-$30,000) for projects with broad impact through high-enrollment, broad change or content creation. 

The Virtual Library of Virginia (VIVA) administers the grant program. VIVA is a consortium of academic libraries that collaborates on public policy priorities and shares costs and negotiates joint use of resources to strengthen stewardship of state dollars. The Virginia General Assembly and member libraries fund VIVA, which is also sponsored by the State Council of Higher Education (SCHEV). 

 

 

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