Reflecting on our OER Grants process

Robertson, R. John/ December 3, 2021/ Uncategorized/ 0 comments

Kristen Hoffman and I are running a series of small OER or open text grants for SPU faculty (and staff). We’re really excited about the projects that we have underway with faculty from a huge range of departments. We’ll have more to say but as a point of reference this was the application format we used. We’ll continue to issue an annual call for proposal while we have funds. As will be obvious this is small scale funding to enable or recognize work, it’s not remotely representative of the effort and time involved but it’s what my budget supported.

This isn’t rocket science but if this happens to be useful to anyone feel free to use under CC:BY

Application format


Date, Email of author

Throughout please replace placeholder text; this document should not be more than 3 pages and should use the structured headings provided.


[In a couple of sentences each, what are you trying to do and why]


Current Texts

Are there currently texts and/ or open texts serving this subject area? What does this proposal offer that is new, improved, or simply helpfully different? What do comparable non-open texts cost?

SPU need

Is this OER of immediate use to the SPU community? Are there any courses which have committed to use it (at least once)? What is a typical enrolment in each of those courses?

There’s a temptation to oversell the impact here – don’t. We want to have an idea of what benefit this will have but, more importantly, we want to know that you have looked at the numbers and current alternatives. The numbers, as such, are not a decider. For example, an open text that might benefit 15 people a year may be as interesting to us as one that benefits 500.

Your faith perspective on the topic as part of the text (throughout, in call out boxes, or as a stand alone chapter) is welcomed but not required.

Project Management

Who’s the project lead at SPU and who else is involved? (if this is a small part of a bigger project tell us about both)

What stage is the project currently at? (if this is a small part of a bigger project tell us about both)

When do you expect the project to finish (if this is a small part of a bigger project tell us about both)?

Provide a brief timeline of the proposed project.


Funding up to $2000 per project. Remember if used for salary you need to include benefit overhead as well in your planning.

What are you using the funding for? ( tell us what and why)

This is intended as project funding rather than course release, if you have a good reason/ are planning on course release as the use for the funding we can look into treating this as a 2 credit release – however please let us know why this needs to be one not the other.

Outline budget

[Item cost overhead]

Technical Requirements


An open license (specifically a license that allows derivative works unless there is a very compelling reason not to), examples include CC BY NC SA, CC BY SA, CC BY, CC 0. The MIT license might also work.


The work provided in at least one format that easily supports editing (e.g. word and pdf, not just pdf) and a copy provided to SPU.


(if applicable)

We will typically support SPU OER projects through SPU platforms. The project should have a clear sense of what platforms it plans to use and how it plans to be sustained (as needed).

OER which are developed and are only available on a given site can be problematic.

Accessibility and Inclusion

[If there’s anything about the project we should know please let us know]

Content needs to meet accessibility guidelines. We will assist as needed.

We will also provide advice and feedback from a DEI lens but incorporating any such feedback is recommended rather than required.

Dean’s approval

(this is not intended to be onerous, but I need to know they know about this and it fits with your PDP/ other institutional commitments)-  email acknowledgement works

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