UCF’s Affordable Instructional Materials Initiative
UCF strives to support instructional material affordability through reduced costs to students. The Affordable Instructional Materials (AIM) Initiative focuses on efforts in the areas of First Day, Open Educational Resources, Library-Sourced Materials, and Affordability Counts. These efforts combined provide a comprehensive (two-fold) structure to reduce course materials costs for UCF students by removing barriers around access to the educational content required to help them succeed academically, while also establishing a mechanism by which to recognize faculty who make an effort to help scale this important work.
What’s Being Done?
The AIM Initiative is a University-wide collaboration that includes the Division of Digital Learning, the UCF Libraries, the Faculty Center for Teaching and Learning (FCTL), the UCF Bookstore, and other University stakeholders. The strategic approach of the AIM Initiative can be illustrated by four pillars, which individually contribute to reducing the cost of instructional materials to students while jointly supporting a unified effort to bring AIM to scale. The four pillars are First Day, Open Educational Resources, Library-Sourced Materials, and Affordability Counts.
Commercial publishers and other for-profit entities are working with UCF to offer students discounts on educational content and/or courseware solutions. Currently, the initiative is focusing on implementing an inclusive access program through the UCF Bookstore called First Day. “Inclusive access” means that theoretically, a student can opt-in to the discounted price during the first week of class, and gain immediate access to course materials.
Open Educational Resources (OER)
“Open Educational Resources are teaching, learning, and research materials that reside in the public domain or have been released under an open license that permits no-cost access, use, adaption, and redistribution by others with no or limited restrictions.” (cf. Hewlett Foundation, OER Defined)
UCF Recommended Best Practices for Textbook Affordability
The UCF Libraries are working with faculty to identify library eBooks available as one·to·one replacements of course texts and resources. The library will check for eBook candidates that allow unlimited users and offer favorable digital rights management (DRM).
Contact your Subject or Campus Librarian for more information.
The Affordability Counts program, managed by Florida International University (FIU), was created as a direct response to the increasing costs of textbooks in higher education. FIU Online’s team established the initiative to recognize faculty who actively make changes to their courses in an effort to advance course material affordability across state universities and colleges.
Textbook Reporting Requirement
During the State of Florida’s 2016 Legislative Session, House Bill 7019 was passed, amending Section 1004.085. It requires universities to post lists of required and recommended textbooks and instructional materials for at least 95 percent of all course sections at least 45 days before the start of classes for each term.
Detailed information for faculty can be found on the Division of Teaching and Learning’s Textbook Adoption page.