Open Educational Resources (OER)

What is OER? OER is defined as “teaching, learning, and research resources released under an open license that permits their free use and repurposing by others. OERs can be textbooks, full courses, lesson plans, videos, tests, software, or any other tool, material, or technique that supports access to knowledge.” Unlike traditionally copyrighted materials, these resources are available for “open use,” which means faculty can edit, modify, customize and share. Students receive immediate access to the text and OER is no cost/low cost for students.

CSN's OER Growth 2019-2020

For all of the data collected on the OER growth at CSN please visit the full dashboard.

STEM and OER Grant Opportunities

Are you interested in OER opportunities? In October 2018, the college received the STEM Innovation and Impact grant from OSIT to focus on STEM initiatives, that has funds for faculty and adjuncts to review, use and create courses utilizing OER.

  • Develop OER for STEM Students (TBD) - Propose a project that will benefit STEM students in the creation or use of OER
  • Review OER STEM Textbook/Materials ($250) - Write a review of an OER textbook for a STEM or required Gen Ed courses for STEM degrees that will be housed in a CSN repository
  • Use OER STEM Textbook/Materials in Your Course ($500) - Review an OER textbook and try it in your class (STEM or required Gen Ed courses for STEM degrees); write a review that will be housed in a CSN repository; provide student/faculty survey and your reflection
  • Develop an OER STEM Master Course ($1,250) - Review an OER textbook (STEM or required Gen Ed courses for STEM degrees); use an OER textbook in your class; develop a master course for adjuncts using OER; pilot it with follow-up surveys and reflection

Please contact Paula Michniewicz for an OER STEM grant application. Applications are due by Monday, April 5th, 2021 at 5:00 PM.

CSN OER Task Force

The Open Educational Resources (OER) Task Force’s purpose is to support the College of Southern Nevada’s Students First, Student Success agenda through the evidence-based strategy of increasing the use of OER to decrease students’ costs and improve access to course materials. Open educational materials are released under an open license that permits their free use and repurposing by others. Such materials include but are not limited to textbooks, full courses, lesson plans, videos, tests, and software. The task force’s charge is to increase awareness about OER’s benefits, to support faculty in adopting, adapting, and creating OER, and to develop and improve CSN’s OER use infrastructure. The task force draws on the energy, insight, and creativity of a broad coalition of members including CSN students, staff, faculty, and administrators.

Are you interested in helping the college grow in the OER area? If so, please join the OER Task Force! The Co-Chairs of the Committee are Jason Tyndal and Paula Michniewicz.  See CSN's latest statistics on OER/no/low cost.

There are also subcommittees to work on the many aspects of OER at CSN what are always looking for more input from our college community. Visit CSN Libraries to learn what they are doing with OER.


This subcommittee will track and assess the cost-savings, outcomes, use, and perceptions of OER at CSN. This committee will begin with a baseline of CSN OER usage, establish definitions, create and disseminate surveys about student access and success. Chair is Tina Martin.


This subcommittee will help create a plan for how new OER items will be found and reviewed, explore storage options for hosting OER texts that have been edited, and find OER books and ancillary items by discipline. Chair is Gracie McDonough.

Funding/Grant Opportunities

This subcommittee will help with finding, writing and implementing grants. Chair is Paula Michniewicz.

Advertising/Promotional Activities

This subcommittee helps to promote OER courses and faculty training through CAPE and elsewhere, and helps to design a website and create an awareness campaign. Chair is Gracie McDonough.