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Faculty Stories – Dr. Wayne Riggs

Dr. Wayne Riggs is an Associate Professor and Director of Graduate Studies in the Department of Philosophy.  He has adopted an open textbook for teaching Logic.  


The following is a brief conversation about adopting an alternative textbook for teaching. 

Stacy Zemke: What areas do you teach in and in what course are you using an open textbook?
Wayne Riggs: I teach in the Philosophy Department and I regularly teach a course on symbolic logic. That is the course for which I am using an open textbook.

SZ: Why did you decide to switch to or try out an open textbook solution for your course?
WR: The main motivation is the high cost of commercial textbooks. I actually think there is an advantage to having a paper copy of most readings, including this textbook, so there is a disadvantage. But the students can get a printout of the text at a very reasonable price from the print shop if they are so inclined. I recommend that they do so.

SZ: What is the open textbook source or sources you are using for your class and what book/books did you replace?
WR: I have used probably a dozen different logic texts over the years. I am now using for all x, an open text written by P. D. Magnus.

SZ: How many students of yours have used this open solution (total across semesters).
WR: Approximately 60

SZ: What was your process for selecting/creating this open book?
WR: I did a Google search for open access logic texts. I found several options, looked at them all carefully, and selected Magnus’ text.

SZ: What are/were the challenges in changing to the open textbook – is it similar to adopting a new “traditional’ textbook for a course – or are there other challenges?
WR: There were no special challenges to adopting this textbook.

SZ:  How have your students responded to this open textbook?
WR: They seem to treat it the same way they have treated any other textbook I have ever used. I have not heard any complaints but I have heard a few students say they appreciated not having to buy an expensive text.

SZ: Will you continue to use this current open solution?
WR: Yes.

SZ:  Would you consider using an open source for other courses that you teach?
WR: Yes,  though I commonly use coursepacks of readings I have selected myself already.

SZ: What advice do you have for other faculty who are considering using alternative textbooks?
WR: Take the possibility of open access texts seriously. In my opinion, the cost of textbooks these days makes it worth taking the effort to at least look around for an open access alternative. In my experience, no text is perfect, so one always has to make certain compromises. If an open access text constitutes a compromise in terms of content, at least there are compensatory advantages that might make it worth the switch.


Image source – http://faculty-staff.ou.edu/R/Wayne.D.Riggs-1/riggs.html

Alternative textbooks and tablets in Engineering

Am just sitting in the final exam for AME 3153 Fluidmechanics with Dr. Kurt Gramoll, who is one of our Alternative Textbook Pilots for the year. He wrote a great post about his project in this blog, but it is a fascinating experience to see his project in action. Dr. Gramoll has already created open textbooks forContinue Reading

Open Access Week 2014

Open Access Week 2014

This week is Open Access Week and as such there will be related events aimed at expanding the understanding of Open Access in the library throughout the week.  Below is a schedule of events, we would for you to attend a few. Beyond Our Walls: A conversation with Kristi Jensen Monday, October 20, 3-4pm BizzellContinue Reading

Beyond OUr Walls: Kristi Jensen, University of Minnesota Libraries

Beyond OUr Walls: Kristi Jensen, University of Minnesota Libraries

Kristi Jensen from the University of Minnesota Libraries will be presenting a talk on Open Textbooks: Access, Affordability and Academic Success on Monday, October 20th at 3:00 pm in the Bizzell Library Community Room, LL118, just across from the new Bookmark Cafe. Learn more about Open Textbooks and how you can make a difference by adoptingContinue Reading

Open Textbook Workshop – October 21st

Open Textbook Workshop – October 21st

Are you an instructor who is concerned about the impact of high textbook costs on your students? Explore possible open textbook solutions by attending a two-hour workshop and writing a short textbook review. Receive a $300 stipend for your efforts! The University of Oklahoma Libraries is hosting an Open Textbook Workshop on Tuesday October 21st.Continue Reading

Faculty Stories: Paul Sims

Faculty Stories: Paul Sims

As part of our ongoing series of faculty’s experiences creating and adopting alternative textbook solutions for students, this weeks post is from Dr. Paul Sims.  Dr. Sims received a grant from the Alternative Textbook Initiative here through OU Libraries to take the iBook he created for his CHEM 3753, Introduction to Biomechanical Methods lab andContinue Reading

Why Tablets for Exams

Just a quick note from Stacy:  Dr. Kurt Gramoll will be guest blogging over the next few weeks to talk about his open textbooks and how he uses them in the classroom.  He received an Alternative Textbook Grant in the summer of 2014 to support further use of his content and assessments in the classroom.Continue Reading

Open Textbooks from OpenStax

Open Textbooks from OpenStax

The Open Educational Resources team at OU Libraries is happy to announce that we have open textbooks published through OpenStax College available for viewing in Bizzell Library.  We are part of a special project sponsored through OpenStax to make these books available for faculty and students to review.  Two faculty members at OU are currentlyContinue Reading

Faculty stories: Laura Gibbs

Dr. Laura Gibbs has been teaching online since 2002, and has been teaching with open content almost exclusively for that time. She has worked over the summer of 2014 to create an Un-Textbook.  The resources are created from open content – so they are openly available for students in her MLLL 3043 Mythology and Folklore course, as well asContinue Reading

New Series – Faculty stories of Open Adoption

Back in July, I wrote about adopting an open textbook for my summer course, and received lots of great feedback – and I think many of us are wanting to know what others are doing to adopt open content. I would love to hear about the experiences of other faculty, support staff and students asContinue Reading