Home | News & Events | Events | 2014 Events | NISO Webinars | September 17: Part 2: E-books for Education: Open Textbook Initiatives

NISO Two-Part Webinar: E-books for Education
Part 2: Open Textbook Initiatives

Part 1 of this webinar was held on September 10: Plug in and Learn

September 17, 2014
1:00 p.m. - 2:30 p.m. (Eastern Time)

System Requirements:

  • NISO has developed a quick tutorial, How to Participate in a NISO Web Event. Please view the recording, which is an overview of the web conferencing system and will help to answer the most commonly asked questions regarding participating in an online Webex event.
  • You will need a computer for the presentation and Q&A.
  • Audio is available through the computer (broadcast) and by telephone. We recommend you have a set-up for telephone audio as back-up even if you plan to use the broadcast audio as the voice over Internet isn't always 100% reliable.
  • Please check your system in advance to make sure it meets the Cisco WebEx requirements. It is your responsibility to ensure that your system is properly set up before each webinar begins.

About the Webinar

The most rapid developments in the world of e-books have taken place in the popular market for fiction and non-fiction monographs. However, with the development of new standards such as EPUB 3 that support multimedia and the improvements in reading devices, the penetration of electronic versions of trade books has advanced quite rapidly. The market for digital textbooks, however, has grown at a more modest rate for a variety of reasons. The electronic textbook maretplace is still working through some very complex technological and business model issues.

This two-part webinar series will explore the nascent world of electronic textbooks and how publishers, students, and librarians are dealing with these new products.

Just as open access has revolutionized the world of journal literature, so too is it increasingly being advocated in the e-textbook world. Part 2 of E-books for Education will focus on the efforts to make textbooks electronically available under free open copyright licenses as part of the broader open educational resources movement.


Todd Carpenter, Executive Director, NISO

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The Library Publishing Landscape for E-Textbooks
Faye Chadwell, Donald and Delpha Campbell University Librarian and Press Director, Oregon State University

This presentation explores the current landscape for academic libraries' involvement in publishing e-textbooks, focusing on the Open Access textbook pilot project currently in place between OSU Libraries and Press and the OSU Extended Campus. Participants will learn about challenges and gain some takeaways to assist in investigating their own partnerships.

Faye A. Chadwell was appointed the Donald and Delpha Campbell University Librarian and Oregon State University Press Director in May 2011. Prior to this appointment she was OSU's Associate University Librarian for Collections and Content Management, a position she'd held since August 2007. An Oregonian since 1995, she served as the Head of Collection Development and Acquisitions at the University of Oregon Libraries and also held positions at the University of South Carolina in Columbia. She has been involved in two divisions of the American Library Association: ALCTS and ACRL. She has also served on the SPARC Steering Committee. She has spoken on authors rights, licensing e-resources, and other collection related topics at numerous venues. She is currently on the editorial board of Journal of Librarianship and Scholarly Communication and Collection Management. She holds an B.A. and M. A. in English from Appalachian State University in Boone, NC, and an MLS from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

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Student-Funded Textbook Initiative at Kansas State University
Brian Lindshield, Associate Professor, Human Nutrition, Kansas State University
Beth Turtle, Associate Professor/ Scholarly Communications & Publishing, Kansas State University Libraries

For two years, the Student Governing Association at Kansas State University has been the primary funder of the Open/Alternative Textbook Initiative. This project awards stipends up to $5,000 to K-State faculty to develop an alternative to the traditional print textbook. To date, awards totaling $96,250 have been made. Over the next year, it is projected that over 12,000 students in 20 courses will not have to buy textbooks in these courses saving students nearly $1,000,000. Of course, every year each open textbook continues to be used these numbers will increase incrementally. This presentation will cover student/library funding of the project, faculty/library collaboration in the initial proposal and initiative, assessment goals, and more recently, interest in the initiative on the part of the president and provost of the university.

Brian Lindshield is associate professor in Human Nutrition at Kansas State University. He graduated from Kansas State with a B.S. in Human Nutrition and received a Ph.D. in Nutritional Sciences from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2008. Brian has been actively involved in advocating for open educational resources at K-State. He developed the Human Nutrition (HN 400) Flexbook (goo.gl/vOAnR) in 2010 and was a finalist for the 2012 Education-Portal.com People’s Choice Award for the Most Open Resource. A story about the flexbook was published in the Kansas City Star and picked up my many other newspapers across the nation in 2013. He is one of the co-PIs on the Open/Alternative Textbook Initiative.

Beth Turtle is the Scholarly Communications & Publishing librarian at K-State Libraries. She is a strong advocate for open access at K-State and has been involved in various open access initiatives including the K-State Open Access Publishing Fund, New Prairie Press, and the Open/Alternative Textbook Initiative. She holds an MLIS from Emporia State University and a BS from the University of Kansas.

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Using Open Resources to Expand Access to Education
Gemma Fay, Academic Content Manager, Boundless

Boundless began by offering students affordable textbooks created from open educational resources, helping students save money. Today, the company has grown to serve the entire educational ecosystem by curating, creating, and publishing a range of open content. Using open licensing allows Boundless to serve everyone from students to educators to authors by making it simple to access, share, and customize the resources within its platform. This presentation will discuss the benefits of using open licenses in expanding access to education.

As manager of the content development team at Boundless, Gemma Fay is responsible for increasing the breadth and depth of Boundless content. Gemma joined Boundless after participating in Startup Institute, Boston where she studied technical marketing and analytics. In her role at Boundless, Gemma has worked within both the marketing and content teams on projects focused on user growth and content expansion. Gemma holds a PhD in Applied Mathematics at the University of Oxford and a Masters Degree in Mathematics from the University of York. She is originally from the UK, and loves living across the pond in Boston.

Event Q&A

Do these open textbooks carry the OSU Press imprint or are you creating a separate imprint for them?
(Faye Chadwell): Our textbooks will have an OSU Press imprint but since it is a joint project, that will have to be indicated. we also want all the books to have a similar look and feel like OpenStax only with more interesting/inspiring covers. 

I'd love to hear a bit more about the role of the editorial board with the open textbooks. This is the editorial board associated with the press, correct? Are they evaluating the proposals & making recommendations?
(FC) Yes, this is the OSU Press Editorial Board. They meet twice a year or meet virtually as needed to make decisions, etc. They will evaluate the proposals and make the recommendations, typically after we have had a manuscript proposal reviewed. 

A common thing I hear from faculty adopters is that students were not aware of the print options available for print-option OERs, or their eReader's functionality in highlighting PDFs or taking notes. Should faculty and student training be a priority?
(FC) Good question. We also encountered training issues with faculty simply downloading ebook versions so that is something we will need to consider offering. It is a question to put to our online education/distant education librarian.

What do you think of the available OA textbooks freely online? Wouldn't have that saved money and funds?
(Brian Lindshield): The quality of OA textbooks varies, but overall it is great that they are available. Yes they would most likely save students money, but whether they will not depend on the specific situation. We'd love to fund faculty members to adopt or adapt an OER.

Given the emphasis on promotion and marketing, are there promotion and marketing techniques or channels which have proven particularly effective for open textbooks?
(FC) One of the most effective techniques: the author herself promotes the textbook at appropriate conferences, etc. It is a technique we encourage all Press authors to employ in order to complement our own promotion via targeted channels and events.

When faculty adapt an existing OA book, does the book goes under review process? 
(BL): At K-State there isn't a formal review process. We view these as living, evolving resources and we want to encourage faculty to experiment to create, adopt, and/or adopt a resource will work best in their course.
(FC) At OSU, even if one of our projects was an existing open textbook, we would still put it under review. If it underwent lots of revisions, we might do another review. It depends on the amount and kinds of revisions.

So do you over all courses? is using an open textbook mandatory for faculty?
(BL): Faculty from any discipline can apply, but we don't cover all courses. The courses that are using an open/alternative textbook are the ones that had a faculty member apply for and receive an award. It is not mandatory for faculty to use one.


Registration closes on September 17, 2014 at 12:00 p.m. (ET)

SAVE! Register for both parts of this two-part webinar and save 25%!


  • NISO Member
    • $143.00 (US and Canada)
    • $164.00 (International)
  • NASIG Member
    • $143.00
  • Non-Member
    • $188.00 (US and Canada)
    • $224.00 (International)
  • Student
    • $74.00

If paying by credit card, register online.

If paying by check, use this PDF form.

Registration Costs: Part 2 only.

  • NISO Member
    • $95.00 (US and Canada)
    • $109.00 (International)
  • NASIG Member
    • $95.00
  • Non-Member
    • $125.00 (US and Canada)
    • $149.00 (International)
  • Student
    • $49.00

If paying by credit card, register online.

If paying by check, please use this PDF form.

Additional Information 

  • Registration closes at 12:00 p.m. (ET) on September 17, 2014. Cancellations made by September 10, 2013 will receive a refund, less a $25 cancellation. After that date, there are no refunds.
  • Registrants will receive detailed instructions about accessing the webinar via e-mail the Monday prior to the event. (Anyone registering between Monday and the close of registration will receive the message shortly after the registration is received, within normal business hours.) Due to the widespread use of spam blockers, filters, out of office messages, etc., it is your responsibility to contact the NISO office if you do not receive login instructions.
  • If you have not received your Login Instruction email by 10:00 a.m. (ET) on the Tuesday before the webinar, at please contact the NISO office or email Juliana Wood, Educational Programs Manager at jwood@niso.org for immediate assistance.
  • Registration is per site (access for one computer) and includes access to the online recorded archive of the webinar. You may have as many people as you like from the registrant's organization view the webinar from that one connection. If you need additional connections, you will need to enter a separate registration for each connection needed.
  • If you are registering someone else from your organization, either use that person's e-mail address when registering or contact the NISO office to provide alternate contact information.
  • Library Standards Alliance (LSA) members receive one free webinar connection as part of their membership and DO NOT need to register for the event for this free connection. Your webinar contact will receive the login instructions the Monday before the event. You may have as many people as you like from the member's library view the webinar from that one connection. If you need additional connections beyond the free one, then you will need to enter a paid registration (at the member rate) for each additional connection required.
  • Webinar presentation slides and Q&A will be posted to the site following the live webinar.
  • Registrants and LSA member webinar contacts will receive an e-mail message containing access information to the archived webinar recording within 48 hours after the event. This recording access is only to be used by the registrant's or member's organization.