OER Liaisons

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At the ASCCC Fall 2018 Plenary Session, a resolution (17.02) was adopted that called on the ASCCC to “…urge local academic senates to identify a local OER point-person to act as a liaison to facilitate OER-related communication between the college and the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges.” The establishment of local OER Liaisons is an integral component of the OERI. As explained in the ASCCC proposal that secured five years of funding for the OERI, the OERI’s goal is to support local college OER efforts by creating a network of OER Liaisons that serve to connect local colleges to the OERI and centrally-hosted OER-related support systems, ensuring an effective means of communication between the OERI, available resources, and the system’s 114 accredited colleges.

It is the OERI’s goal to support OER Liaisons so that they may serve as advocates by taking an active role in increasing local OER awareness, adoption, and support. The ASCCC is please to provide a stipend to each college’s OER Liaison, provided the specified expectations have been met (Spring 2020 OER Liaison Expectations). OERLs are asked to use the OER Liaison Tracking Sheet to record their liaison activities and to share their OER-related wins, expertise, and needs. As an OERL, you have a designated Regional Lead who is your official point of contact for the OERI. If you are unsure who your regional lead is, please contact us.

Guidance for OER Liaisons (OERLs)

During the course of the OERI’s 1st round of OER Liaison (OERL) Orientations, we received many suggestions for additional resources that the Liaisons were needing and we heard a pretty basic question from some of you – what should I be doing if I am an OERL? As our OERLs come to us with a range of experiences, we reasoned that we should develop or identify resources that honor that – and meet you where you are at. With that in mind, we offer the following resources tailored to our beginning, intermediate, and advanced OERLs.

OERL Beginner

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Welcome! As someone who is newer to OER, your fresh perspective is especially valued and appreciated. Please remember that there are no bad questions – use the OERI team – and our resources – as needed. While there may be things that others have figured out and you’ll be the beneficiary of the lessons learned, there are sure to be instances where your challenge is a shared one – and your fresh perspective just might be what is needed to find a resolution. Sharing and problem-solving is part of the OER culture – embrace it.

As a new OERL, what should you do?

  • Complete your tasks as delineated in the expectancies document – OER Liaisons – Spring 2020 Expectations.
  • Introduce yourself locally. Share with your faculty colleagues, part-time and full-time, that you are the college’s OERL and that your role is to share resources with them – as well as communicate their needs to the OERI. An e-mail to your colleagues would be appropriate, as would a visit to your local senate and other relevant committees. If you are not actively connected to the college governance system, consult with your local senate president to determine what connections you should be making.
  • Determine the status of OER at your college.
    • If no one has provided the OERI with information regarding the number of courses and sections at your college using the no-cost designation (as required by SB 1359) during the fall term of the current academic year, provide that information to the OERI. If you are not sure what to do, please ask for assistance.
    • If information regarding the use of the no-cost designation has been provided, explore the criteria used for making this determination and determine whether or not these course sections tend to be using OER or not. In other words, educate yourself regarding the use of this designation as an initial exploration into the status of OER at your college.
  • Engage faculty in one or more disciplines about their use of OER – why or why not are they using OER?

OERL intermediate

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As someone who is very familiar with OER, you’re in a unique position to formalize your role as an OER advocate and to impact local OER attitudes and adoption. As someone with an intermediate knowledge base, we look forward to having you share your expertise, as well as your local OER challenges. Nothing about the OERI is top-down – as a faculty-lead initiative, our focus is on leveraging the existing knowledge and experience in our system – please don’t ever be afraid to share. Please note that some of the tasks listed below may be things that you have done or that simply are not necessary given your OER background. We’ve included the steps we are encouraging our beginners to take as a starting point to ensure that there is some consistency, as appropriate, to your local OER advocacy efforts.

As an intermediate OERL, what should you be doing?

  1. Complete your tasks as delineated in the expectancies document – OER Liaisons – Spring 2020 Expectations.
  2. Introduce yourself locally. Share with your faculty colleagues, part-time and full-time, that you are the college’s OERL and that your role is to share resources with them – as well as communicate their needs to the OERI. An e-mail to your colleagues would be appropriate, as would a visit to your local senate and other relevant committees.
  3. Determine the status of OER at your college.
    • If no one has provided the OERI with information regarding the number of courses and sections at your college using the no-cost designation (as required by SB 1359) during the fall term of the current academic year, provide that information to the OERI. If you are not sure what to do, please ask for assistance.
    • If information regarding the use of the no-cost designation has been provided, explore the criteria used for making this determination and determine whether or not these course sections tend to be using OER or not. In other words, educate yourself regarding the use of this designation as an initial exploration into the status of OER at your college.
  4. Engage faculty in one or more disciplines about their use of OER – why or why not are they using OER?
  5. Explore the following:
    • Printing OER. Has a process for making printed OER available been established? If not, what are the barriers?
    • Informing students of OER. What information does your course schedule provide to students regarding the OER being employed in a given course? Are students provided with information for accessing or obtaining OER resources in advance of a course’s start? Is there room for improvement in how this communication is handled?
    • Has your local senate formally indicated it’s support for the use of OER?
  6. Identify next steps related to the items in #5 – and take them.

OERL Advanced

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Welcome! If you’ve identified yourself as being “advanced”, you already are the person that your colleagues approach with their OER questions. Steps #1 – #6 (our to-do list for those with less OER experience) may be things you have already tackled.
  • Complete your tasks as delineated in the expectancies document – OER Liaisons – Spring 2020 Expectations.
  • Introduce yourself locally. Share with your faculty colleagues, part-time and full-time, that you are the college’s OERL and that your role is to share resources with them – as well as communicate their needs to the OERI. An e-mail to your colleagues would be appropriate, as would a visit to your local senate and other relevant committees.
  • Determine the status of OER at your college.
    • If no one has provided the OERI with information regarding the number of courses and sections at your college using the no-cost designation (as required by SB 1359) during the fall term of the current academic year, provide that information to the OERI. If you are not sure what to do, please ask for assistance.
    • If information regarding the use of the no-cost designation has been provided, explore the criteria used for making this determination and determine whether or not these course sections tend to be using OER or not. In other words, educate yourself regarding the use of this designation as an initial exploration into the status of OER at your college.
  • Engage faculty in one or more disciplines about their use of OER – why or why not are they using OER?
  • Explore the following:
    • Printing OER. Has a process for making printed OER available been established? If not, what are the barriers?
    • Informing students of OER. What information does your course schedule provide to students regarding the OER being employed in a given course? Are students provided with information for accessing or obtaining OER resources in advance of a course’s start? Is there room for improvement in how this communication is handled?
    • Has your local senate formally indicated it’s support for the use of OER?
  • Identify next steps related to the items in #5 – and take them.
  • Conduct a local OER needs assessment similar to what the OERI is trying to do at the system level. Most importantly, what discipline faculty are most interested – and willing – to use OER and what is stopping them from doing so?
  • Establish a web presence to showcase your local OER work and to direct your faculty to resources. Consider the websites and pages of other colleges before you get started.

Upcoming OER Liaison Webinars and Conversations

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OER Liaison Webinar Archives

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Notices and FYIs

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Have you checked out our OER by TMC resources?
Thinking ahead to summer? Consider the “Promoting OER Summer Action Plan Checklist.
Have you added OER-related language to your SEA plan? Here are some ideas for what language to add – and where.