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The Academic Senate for California Community Colleges Open Educational Resources Initiative (OERI) was funded by the California legislature in trailer bill language during the summer of 2018. Preparations for its launch were made during the fall 2018 term and this state-wide faculty-led effort had its kick-off with a webinar on February 1, 2019. As referenced in Assembly Bill 1809 (Higher education trailer bill, 2017-2018):

This bill would appropriate $6,000,000 from the General Fund to the Board of Governors of the California Community Colleges for the 2018–19 fiscal year for allocation to the Academic Senate for the California Community Colleges to support the development of, and the expansion of the use of, open educational resources for the California Community Colleges. The bill would require the Academic Senate for the California Community Colleges to submit a report to the Legislature and the Department of Finance on or before February 1, 2022, including specified data related to the progress of supporting and expanding the use of open educational resources pursuant to the bill. The bill would specify that the funds allocated to community college districts pursuant to this bill for the above specified purposes would be applied toward the minimum funding requirements for school districts and community college districts imposed by Section 8 of Article XVI of the California Constitution.

The OERI’s mission is to reduce the cost of educational resources for students by expanding the availability and adoption of high quality Open Educational Resources (OER). “OER” refers to teaching and learning materials that are freely available online for everyone to use and includes course modules, lectures, homework assignments, lab and classroom activities, pedagogical materials, games, simulations, and many more resources contained in digital media collections from around the world (as defined by OER Commons). OER most often refers to open access textbooks and ancillary materials that are available at little or no cost to students. The OERI facilitates and coordinates the curation and development of OER texts, ancillaries, and support systems. In addition, the OERI supports local OER implementation efforts through the provision of professional development, technical support, and technical resources.

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Meet Our Leadership Team

The work of the OERI is guided by a team consisting of a Faculty Coordinator, Area Representatives, Project Monitors, and a Communications Lead. The ASCCC divides the state up into 4 geographic regions. Our structure ensures that we are distributed across the state and can be deployed to visit – virtually or in-person – any of our 115 accredited colleges as needed.

Michelle Pilati

Faculty Coordinator | Psychology, Rio Hondo College

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Michelle has been actively involved in the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges (ASCCC) for over a decade, representing the ASCCC in various capacities and playing a role in a wide array of state-level endeavors, including guided pathways, C-IDStatewide Career Pathways, the Student Success Task Force, and the implementation of SB 1440. Previously she served as the Psychology Editor for MERLOT (Multimedia Resource for Learning and Online Teaching) and was a founding Editorial Board member and served as Co-editor of the MERLOT Journal of Online Learning and Teaching (JOLT), a peer-reviewed online publication that launched in 2005. Prior to her involvement in statewide work, she served as Curriculum Chair and Distance Education Coordinator at her college.

Suzanne Wakim

Regional Lead, Area A & Project Monitor | Biology, Butte College

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Suzanne is the Distance Education Coordinator, Open Educational Resources Coordinator, Student Learning Outcomes Coordinator, and biology faculty at Butte Community College. Suzanne Wakim has designed and developed over a dozen biology courses including five online courses. She has helped write numerous textbooks and learning ancillaries including content for Nature, Discovery Education, Carnegie Mellon’s Open Learning Initiative and OpenStax. She has presented on topics such as: Universal Design for Learning; Open Pedagogy for Equity-Minded Course Development; and Learning Apps for Increased Student Engagement.

Heather Dodge

Regional Lead, Area B | Librarian, Berkeley City College

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Heather is a library faculty at Berkeley City College and teaches courses in information literacy, research methods, and navigating information on the internet. She served as a grant lead on several OER grants at Berkeley City College, including a Z-degree planning grant, AB-798 (OER professional development), and has coordinated training and OER discovery in the Peralta Community College District since 2016. She is passionate about reducing textbook costs for students and libraries, engaging faculty in new pedagogies around OER, and eliminating barriers to higher education. She spent the academic year ’19-’20 as a Fulbright Scholar in Norway.

Jennifer Paris

Regional Lead, Area C | Early Childhood Education, College of the Canyons

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Jennifer is a full-time faculty member in early childhood education at College of the Canyons in Santa Clarita, CA. She is currently leading the department on their Zero Textbook Cost grant creating OER textbooks for their eight core courses (and co-authoring three of the books). She is helping lead a discipline-wide collaboration in collecting and creating ZTC and OER content for early childhood education and child development. Jennifer has hosted two ECE OER Summits and oversees an ECE OER Collaboration Google Group. This work meshes well with her passion for student success, instructional excellence, and equity.

Dave Dillon

Regional Lead, Area D | Counseling Faculty, Grossmont College

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Dave Dillon is counseling faculty and a professor at Grossmont College in San Diego. He is a general counselor and teaches College Success courses. He curated a College Success OER textbook, Blueprint for Success in College and Career (Rebus Community, 2018), and has recently participated in leadership roles for statewide CCC committees. He is passionate about student success, textbook quality, affordability, access, and design.

Shagun Kaur

Project Monitor | Communication Studies, De Anza College

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Shagun Kaur currently works as a faculty in Communication Studies at De Anza College. In addition, she serves on the Academic Senate, Tech Task Force and Online Learning Advisory Group at the college, and on the ASCCC OER Task Force. Shagun has served as Open Education Coordinator and OpenStax Institutional Lead at De Anza and has presented on OER, Equity, Online Learning and Student Success. Shagun has been passionate about OER adoption and advocacy since 2014 when she co-wrote and edited a video series on Information Literacy for De Anza college and is currently curating/authoring two Communication Studies books and ancillaries on LibreTexts.

Amanda Taintor

Project Monitor | Faculty Coordinator Instructional Design and Distance Education, Reedley College

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Amanda Taintor currently serves as the faculty coordinator of instructional design and distance education for Reedley College including Madera Community College Center and Oakhurst Community College Center. In addition to this position, Amanda has also assumed the role of student learning outcome (SLO) coordinator. Prior to  these roles Amanda taught as a full time child development instructor for 8 years at Reedley College.

Julie Bruno

Communications Lead| Communication Studies, Sierra College

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Coming soon.