BOULDER, Colo. – College and university leaders are working across state lines to reduce barriers faced by students and to empower faculty with access to a wide range of instructional materials. WICHE and its sister regional higher education compact organizations (MHEC, NEBHE, SREB) and WCET (WICHE Cooperative for Educational Technologies) are exploring the development of a national network to support scaling and adoption of Open Educational Resources (OER).
”Working in concert, the regional compacts will lead their states in initiatives aimed at reducing the cost of college and increasing the quality of pedagogy through the adoption of OER. The overarching goal of this national network is to promote educational access and equity by removing barriers to postsecondary attainment” said Tanya Spilovoy, Director of Open Policy at WCET.
Funding from the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation has been awarded to support the research efforts and coordination of a national focus group during a Spring 2020 planning period. The focus of the planning period is to develop a plan to scale the adoption of high-quality OER using sustainable models and appropriate materials in individual states and across regions of the country. This initiative will efficiently leverage the compacts’ existing relationships with states and institutions and lead to evidence-based frameworks, guidelines, and structures to promote bringing OER to scale.
“WICHE and WCET are proud to be an integral partner in this collaborative effort with our compact partners to identify effective ways to scale high-quality OER to benefit students in our region and across the country,” said WICHE President Demarée Michelau.
For more than 65 years, the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE) has become the Western region’s most reliable resource for bolstering higher education, workforce development, and behavioral health. WICHE is a knowledge- and resource-sharing interstate compact that helps states, territories, and postsecondary institutions in the West address some of our society’s most pressing needs. From promoting access to high-quality, affordable higher education to helping states get the most from their technology investments and addressing unmet behavioral health, workforce development, and equity challenges, WICHE advances innovation, cooperation, and sound public policy to improve the life in the West.
WCET (WICHE Cooperative for Educational Technologies) is the leader in the practice, policy, and advocacy of technology-enhanced learning in higher education. Its growing membership includes 398 institutions, higher education agencies and systems, nonprofit organizations, government agencies, and corporations in all U.S. states and several Canadian provinces. WCET is widely recognized as one of the most informative, reliable, and forward-thinking organizations focused on the role of technology and innovation in higher education.