Open Educational Resources Fund

The Open Educational Resources (OER) Fund was established through the UBC Academic Excellence Fund to support affordable and inclusive access to learning materials through the adaption, adoption, development, and integration of OER within UBC credit courses.

In alignment with UBC's Strategic Plan, Shaping UBC’s Next Century, the Office of the Provost at UBC Vancouver, has committed $1-million over a four year period to support OER initiatives. At least $200,000 of this funding is allocated for yearly grants and in the 2020/21 cycle, the OER Fund provided over $240,000 in funding to over 25 faculty, staff, and student OER projects.

Resource grants may be used for, but not limited to:

  • Adoption, adaptation, or creation of open educational resources which address affordability and access to learning resources within UBCV credit courses;
  • Course enhancements using open educational resources, including assessment materials.
  • Activities and events that seek to engage the UBCV community in increasing awareness and capacity for supporting OER.

The OER Fund will consist of two grant pathways:

  • OER Rapid Innovation Grants: Small grants of up to $2,000, which are available to the UBCV community for innovative activities that increase OER development, awareness, and capacity building.
  • OER Implementation Grants: Large grants of up to $25,000 for UBCV faculty who wish to incorporate OER as required materials into their UBCV credit courses.

The UBC OER Fund is guided by the following principles, developed in consultation with student and faculty leadership at the UBCV campus:

  • Increase the creation, adaptation, adoption, and integration of high-quality OER, including assessment materials, in UBC credit courses.
  • Reduce student costs for learning materials and assessments.
  • Enable instructors to modify, edit, or adapt high-quality OER to fit their unique specifications and goals in order to help provide meaningful, contextualized learning materials for UBC students.
  • Engage with the UBC community to increase awareness of OER.
  • Grow capacity at UBC to support and sustain OER activities.

During this round of funding, we particularly welcome proposals that focus on the following areas:

  • First- and second-year undergraduate courses with high enrolment.
  • Implementation of OER into multi-section courses or multiple courses.
  • Development and implementation of open test/quiz/problem banks and other interactive content that can be used for assessment.
  • Support for increasing awareness of OER.
  • Student involvement in the development and/or implementation of the open educational resources.
  • Incorporation and adaptation of existing high quality open educational resources.

In-kind OER Fund Dedicated Support

  • Strategist, Open Education Initiatives, CTLT
  • Librarian, Flexible Learning/Open Scholarship, UBC Library
  • Open Education Student Librarian
  • The CTLT Projects and Faculty Partnerships team, which supports the TLEF, will provide in-kind support to the committee/funding process for the OER Fund.

Examples of OER Support Available

The CTLT and UBC Library provide in-depth information, consultation, and support for open textbooks, open educational resources, and open homework options. The full schedule of OER Fund consulting sessions, as well as OER related workshops, is available on the CTLT Events Open Education Calendar.

Support Category Primary Unit  Support Examples
Application Consulting Joint
  • Drop-in/scheduled consulting sessions
  • OER 101 workshops
  • Identification of existing OER
  • Ideation support
  • Evaluation plan development
  • Answering questions, emails, etc.
Funded Project Consulting Joint
  • Regular meetings with principal applicants/project teams
  • Answering questions/emails, etc.
  • Sharing resources, etc.
Identification, Curation, and  Evaluation of Existing OER Library
  • Reviewing existing OER for specific disciplines
  • Helping teams evaluate for high quality
  • Helping to identify suitable third party media (images, figures, etc.) that can integrate into OER
OER Training & Capacity Development  Joint
  • Ongoing workshops, consulting, training, etc.
  • Developing communities across projects
  • Creating student support and cohort opportunities across projects
  • In-class course support for open pedagogy and student OER creation
Project management & OER Development Best Practice Support Joint
  • Helping to develop project processes
  • Supporting best practices (style guides, accessibility, peer review, etc.)
  • Support and facilitation of resource development sprints, hackathons, etc.
  • Project team organization
Technology & Platform Support (e.g., Canvas, Wiki, PressBooks, OJS, PreText, LaTeX, WeBWorK, etc.) Joint
  • Training and support for using specific UBC platforms
  • Resource development (tutorials, guides, etc.)
Copyright Review and Support for Third-Party Materials Library
  • Review of incorporated materials for copyright status
  • Creative Commons Licensure criteria conflicts
  • Creative Commons attribution support
Indigenization Consulting Joint
  • Consulting for best practices, project planning, and community engagement
  • Consultation on digitizing and licensing of Indigenous and First Nations material
Instructional, Learning, Open Resource Design Support CTLT
  • Effective design of open resources to support learning
  • Best practices for inclusive learning, accessibility, UDL
Course Integration Support CTLT
  • Identification of course touchpoints
  • Technical support for integrating resources into courses
Sharing, Archiving, and Discoverability Support Library
  • Identification of open repositories suitable for resource sharing and archiving
  • Technical support for uploading resources to faculty selected repository tools
  • Support for assigning metadata for discoverability
Evaluation Consulting/Support CTLT
  • Evaluation plan implementation and support
  • Evaluation tool (survey, focus group) development
  • Data analysis

For budget development:

  • You can consult with CTLT to develop the budget for your project either at OER Fund Proposal Consultation drop-in sessions or by contacting Jeff Miller, Senior Associate Director, CTLT ( to arrange a time for a private consultation.
  • For open text or PressBook-based development projects, the UBC Library has created this resource [PDF] which contains time estimates for project development that can be used to help inform your budget.

The Office of the Provost and Vice-President Academic is pleased to announce the first round of 2019/20 OER Fund projects. As of June 1, 2020 over $240,000 in project grants have been approved to support the development and implementation of a wide range of OER projects, from open textbooks and open problem sets to online interactive resources.

Please visit the Funded Projects page to see the list and descriptions of OER Fund supported projects.


OER Fund(ed): complex concepts, simple English

By Sheridan Powell on November 6, 2020

Georg Rieger is customizing an open physics textbook in such a way that it will be a great learning resource for anyone, but especially for international students. Read More...

OER Fund(ed): real-world problems for biomechanics students

By Sheridan Powell on October 15, 2020

Robyn Newell is part of a group that received an OER Fund grant to create open biomechanics problems that are closer to real-world applications in order to help their students succeed. Read More...
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