Most OER initiatives begin on the main campus, often centered around a particular college or department that catches the vision. But what if you have multiple satellite campuses? How do you carry the fervor to other departments? How can you reach faculty across your entire institution?
One way to scale OER at your college is to take a Play from San Jacinto College in Texas and create OER Ambassadors. San Jac leaders created an OER Champion position to oversee the College’s OER adoption efforts, increase awareness, support faculty, and develop common resources for faculty members to find, share, and teach with OER such as the College’s Open Books Course Hub. To support the work of this campus OER champion and raise the profile of the College’s OER initiative on satellite campuses, the College also created OER Ambassadors as stipended faculty positions.
The responsibility of OpenBooks (OER) Ambassadors is to generate awareness and increase the knowledge of Open Books among students and faculty on their campus. Ambassadors were selected based on their experience of adopting/adapting OER materials. By selecting faculty members who have already adopted OER for their courses, they are in a position to help mentors others through the process.
Primary responsibilities include (but are not limited to):
1. Promote OER Week – Partner with library and/or other faculty to promote your OER initiative throughout your campus
2. Attend department meetings to discuss your OER initiative when requested
3. Attend Student Involvement Events as requested
4. Proactively invite and answer questions for faculty members pertaining to OER
5. Assist faculty if needed adopting OER courses (e.g. guidance around technology, course design, finding/adopting/adapting OER course materials, using the Lumen Platform, etc.)
San Jacinto designates ambassadors for their north, south, and central campuses. The OER Ambassadors attend events during Open Education Week by partnering with library and/or other faculty to promote Open Books throughout their campus. They attend department meetings and student events to promote OER as requested. They also assist faculty with getting started with OER with course design, uploading course cartridges, and sharing pedagogical strategies. More importantly, they are a familiar face on campus to talk about OER and teaching.