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Open Educational Resources, Open access publishing, Scholarly publishing, Academic libraries


Textbooks have long been an integral learning platform in higher education. As the rising cost of textbooks continues to burden students, many libraries have begun to facilitate the creation and publishing of open textbooks. In 2013, with the support of a Provost-backed initiative, Portland State University (PSU) Library developed an open textbook publishing program that works with faculty to create open textbooks that are designed specifically for the courses that they teach. The publishing initiative, called PDXOpen, has published 21 open textbooks. The program has saved over 2,890 PSU students over $272,000 on the cost of their books.

PSU Library conducted a survey to assess the impact PDXOpen textbooks were having on PSU students’ academic experience. The survey investigates students’ textbook purchasing behavior, how they access and use their open textbook (print or online), their perceptions on the quality, and what features of their open textbook that they like or dislike. This presentation will discuss the results of the survey, the study’s strengths and limitations, and provide recommendations for future open textbook authors and publishing programs.


Presented at the Seventeenth International Conference on Books, Publishing & Libraries will be held at the University of Granada, Granada, Spain, 5 July 2019.

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