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In a recent study, the College Board found that undergraduate students can expect to pay upwards of $1,400 a year for textbooks and supplies. The cost of textbooks impacts student success and retention. Students who participated in the 2012 Florida student Survey answered that, at least once over the course of their academic careers, the cost of required textbooks caused them to:
||Not purchase the required textbook
||Take fewer courses
||Not register for a specific course
||Earn a poor grade because I could not afford to buy the textbook
||Drop a course
||Fail a course because I could not afford to buy the textbook
- Save students money. Open textbooks offer both digital editions and printed copies. Students can download digital editions for free or order print copies at a low price.
- Allow for flexible content. Students can access the content in their preferred format, on their preferred platform. Professors can customize the material to match their course needs. Video, audio, and other interactive content can be embedded into digital editions.
- Help students succeed. A recent, multi-institutional study showed that students using open textbooks in their courses performed as well or better than students using traditional textbooks and that they enrolled in more courses the following semester. Students using online open textbooks also gain ICT (information communication technology) skills.
Offers over 57,000 free eBooks. Choose among free epub books, free kindle books, download them or read them online.
Directory of Open Access Books
Openly accessible (and many openly licensed) electronic books. Includes search and browse finding features. Many times from international publishers and strong focus on humanities and social sciences
This link includes textbook and various open education resources.
MERLOT contains links to freely available online textbooks from a variety of sources. MERLOT II is a project of the California State University System.
- Search instructions: (Filter "material type" by "open textbook").
Open Textbooks: The Current State of Play
Finding Open Textbooks
How to find an open textbook
A tutorial from Open Washington that walks through the process of finding an appropriate textbook in OpenStax.
Open Education Textbook Directory
This BC Open Textbook Directory provides a dynamic listing of available open textbooks by discipline. You can also contribute titles to update the list.
Sources of Open Textbooks
Open Textbook Library
The Open Textbook Library provides access to reviewed textbook and resources.
OpenStax from Rice University offers free, online educational materials and textbooks, some of which can be printed at an affordable price.
OPENSTAX Ancilliary Resources
Find ancillary materials for each OPENStax book.
OPENStax Faculty Resources
These resources created by faculty coincide with the OPENStax Book Collection.
Zero cost open textbook access and remix system with content in biology, business, chemistry, geosciences, humanities, math, physics, Spanish, statistics, and workforce development. Features: embedded media, dynamic figures, Jupyter integration, Hypothes.is annotation, print on demand, LMS imports, and forthcoming WeBWork integration.
MIT OpenCourseWare: Online Textbooks
An index of online textbooks in MIT OpenCourseWare, including open-licensed electronic versions of print books, self-published online books, or course notes which are so thorough that they serve as an alternative to a conventional textbook.
BCcampus Open Ed
BCcampus has curated a collection of open textbooks that align with the top 40 highest enrolled first and second year post-secondary subject areas in British Columbia. Many books have been reviewed by faculty and include ancillary resources. Particular strengths include
Open SUNY Textbooks
A pilot open textbook publishing initiative established by State University of New York that engages faculty as authors and peer-reviewers and libraries as publishing service and infrastructure.
In addition to other open educational content, Saylor Academy offers over 100 open textbooks under a variety of Creative Commons licenses.
InTech is the publisher of one of the largest open access collection of books in the fields of Science, Technology and Medicine.
College Open Textbooks
The College Open Textbooks Collaborative maintains a catalog of open and/or affordable textbooks appropriate for lower division university classes. Some resources have been peer-reviewed.
The Global Text Project
The Global Text Project is a joint project of the Terry College of Business of the University of Georgia and The Daniels College of Business of the University of Denver that publishes electronic texts for students in the developing world and maintains a database of links to books for such students.
American Institute of Mathematics
Open textbooks that have been approved by the American Institute of Mathematics.
A free, collaboratively-built collection of manuals about free and open source software.