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Missouri A&OER Conference 2024

Virtual statewide conference March 2024

Schedule at a Glance


Conference Sched

Wednesday, March 6 Pre-Conference 
9:00 am - 5:00 pm Creative Commons Workshop

Thursday, March 7

Presentation Presentation
9:00 -  9:50 am

Moving Beyond OER Awareness: A Fellowship Approach to Supporting Faculty Who are Ready to Adopt or Author OER

Launching Library-Led OER Initiatives to Promote Student Success at a Small Institution

10:00- 10:50 am

Navigating Uncharted Waters: Embracing Open Educational Resources (OER) for the First Time

Elevating undergraduate anthropology students' learning experiences with OER and non-disposable assignments
12 Noon- 1:20 pm


Degrees of Open: The how and why of incorporating open education into courses one step at a time

1:30 -  2:20 pm

Birds of a Feather: Open Education at Private Institutions

Creating Open Educational Resources with Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Learning Experiences
2:30 -  3:20 pm 

Visualizing OER Cost Savings with Open Data

What do students think of OER and Textbooks? Voices of Students at a Regional Missouri University
4:00- 6:00 pm  Virtual Happy Hour!   


Full Schedule Details

Conference Sched

Wednesday, March 6

Time: 9:00 am- 5:00 pm

Creative Commons Pre-Conference Workshop

Faculty and librarians attending the Creative Commons workshop associated with the Missouri A&OER Conference will gain technical capacity in CC licensing; they will (1) learn about Creative Commons licenses, the basics of copyright, the public domain and exceptions to copyright such as fair use. Participants will also (2) practice openly licensing their own works and reusing other CC licensed works. Beyond building technical capacity, this workshop will (3) help participants start to explore the collaborative possibilities within the open education movement. 

This workshop will take one day to complete, and will draw from the CC Certificate training program content. Limited to 50 registrants and for those in Missouri.

Thursday, March 7 

Time: 9:00 am- 9:50 am

Title: Moving Beyond OER Awareness: A Fellowship Approach to Supporting Faculty Who are Ready to Adopt or Author OER


The need to support faculty who are adopting or creating OER is tantamount to growing a student-focused Open Education program. UT Austin is committed to providing faculty with opportunities to engage within the Open Education community, as well as to increase the amount of OER available to students. To that end, UT Austin libraries established the Open Education Fellowship, a stipend-supported fellowship in which selected faculty adopt or create OER for use in their coursework. As part of the OE Fellowship, UT Austin faculty commit to fully flipping their course from requiring paid materials to exclusively utilizing OER, thus rendering their course cost-free for students. In this presentation, attendees will learn about the Open Education Fellowship–its creation, funding sources, program schedules, and view sample work created by fellows. Attendees will leave the presentation with concrete ideas and resources to begin or grow a similar program at their own institutions, including ideas on how to market such programs, how to support participating faculty, how to overcome potential obstacles, and celebrate successes.

Learning Outcomes:

Attendees will leave the presentation having learned about UT Austin's Open Education Fellowship. Attendees will gain an awareness of how the fellowship got started, workflows of running the fellowship, outreach methods, what worked well within the fellowship, and areas of growth. Attendees will leave with concrete information about how to begin a similar program at their institution.


Heather Walter

Heather Walter is a the OER librarian at the University of Texas at Austin. Throughout her career, she has supported OER awareness and adoption efforts in both public libraries and higher education.



Time: 9:00 am- 9:50 am

Title: Launching Library-Led OER Initiatives to Promote Student Success at a Small Institution

Description: Park University is a small, private university located in Parkville, Missouri. Our student population is nontraditional, with many of our students based in military centers around the globe and/or taking classes entirely online. Like many institutions, the rising cost of living, tuition, and other expenses has placed a financial burden on our students that the library is attempting to alleviate through open educational resources initiatives. As the OER librarian, I am launching several projects for the 23-24 academic year to promote the use of free, library-owned, or open course materials in place of high-cost textbooks. I have identified “high-impact” courses with both high enrollment and high textbook cost, and secured grant funding to create a pilot course redevelopment program. Selected course developers will receive a stipend to work 1:1 with me to replace all paid course materials with materials that are free for students. In completing this pilot program and assessing the results, I hope to be able to demonstrate the impact of OERs and library-owned materials on student success, persistence, and completion within a course. Alongside the pilot program, I am leading a hands-on OER workshop in November with more than a dozen faculty members, during which I will guide them through a variety of resources for finding robust, course- and topic-specific OERs for their courses. Additionally, the Library is now in close partnership with the Digital Learning Team and the instructional designers at Park, and I am offering individualized consultations and support to all faculty undergoing the current course redevelopment cycle. I plan to gather insights from these faculty and the workshop participants to learn more about their perceptions and current usage of OER, and use these insights to inform the future of Park OER initiatives.

Learning Outcomes:

By attending this session, participants will learn: • How OERs can impact student retention, persistence, and completion • Case studies demonstrating the academic impact of OERs • How to connect with faculty members, even in remote learning environments, to promote the benefits of OERs • Low-budget initiatives institutions can employ to alleviate the financial burden of course materials for students • Results and impact of several OER initiatives at a small, private, nontraditional institution

Presenter(s): Anne Accardi and Danielle Theiss

Anne Accardi is one of three full-time librarians at Park University. In her role as Digital Initiatives & Resources Librarian, she works closely with faculty throughout the course development and redevelopment process to help them identify and implement free, library-owned, or open course materials. Working at a nontraditional institution with a high proportion of distance learners and faculty, Anne is passionate about making library services and materials accessible and equitable regardless of modality.

Danielle Theiss is the Park University Director of Library, Academic, and Career Success Services and holds an MBA from Rockhurst University, an MA in Information Science and Learning Technologies as well as an MA in Religious Studies from the University of Missouri, Columbia. Current research interests include library anxiety, assessing library services and resources, services for distance and online learners, and professional development and continuing education for librarians.



Time: 10:00 am- 10:50 am

Title: Navigating Uncharted Waters: Embracing Open Educational Resources (OER) for the First Time


This presentation addresses the apprehensions often associated with adopting Open Educational Resources (OER) for the first time and provides guidance on integrating these resources seamlessly into educational settings. OER, with its potential to enhance accessibility, affordability, and adaptability, presents a valuable opportunity for educators to transform traditional teaching and learning methodologies. However, many instructors face initial trepidation when considering the shift towards OER due to unfamiliarity with the resources and the perceived complexities involved. In our presentation, we aim to demystify the process of utilizing OER by acknowledging common concerns and offering practical strategies to alleviate anxieties. Addressing fears related to quality, relevance, and technological hurdles, the presentation highlights tools, and platforms available to assist educators in identifying high-quality OER materials. Moreover, we emphasize the pedagogical flexibility of OER, encouraging educators to tailor resources to align with specific learning objectives and student needs. Engaging with OER not only enhances content accessibility but also promotes collaborative, interactive learning experiences. We discuss the impact of open licensing and intellectual property considerations, facilitating a deeper understanding of how to respect copyright while making the most of OER. This presentation empowers educators to embrace OER confidently, fostering an inclusive and innovative learning environment. By addressing concerns and providing actionable strategies, we strive to inspire a wider adoption of OER, ultimately advancing equitable access to quality education.

Learning Outcomes:

1. Gain a comprehensive understanding of what Open Educational Resources (OER) are, their potential benefits, and how they differ from traditional educational materials. 2. Recognize and acknowledge common concerns and apprehensions associated with adopting OER for the first time, including issues related to quality, relevance, and technological barriers. 3. Explore the pedagogical flexibility that OER offers, enabling tailoring of resources to align with specific learning objectives, teaching styles, and diverse student populations. 4. Understand how the use of OER can promote inclusivity and enhance interactive, collaborative learning experiences for both educators and students. 5. Feel empowered and confident to navigate the OER landscape, enabling successful integration of these resources into educational curricula, ultimately fostering a more accessible and innovative learning environment.

Presenter(s):Monica Radu, Kristen Sobba, and Joshua Shadwick

Dr. Monica Radu is an Associate Professor in the Department of Criminal Justice, Social Work, and Sociology at Southeast Missouri State University. She teaches introductory and upper-level sociology courses, including social problems, deviant social behavior, and work and family life. She also teaches courses for the graduate program in criminal justice, including social inequality, research methods, and statistics.

Dr. Kristen Sobba is an Associate Professor in the Department of Criminal Justice, Social Work, and Sociology at Southeast Missouri State University. She also serves as the Criminal Justice Graduate Coordinator. Dr. Sobba teaches a wide-range of undergraduate and graduate criminal justice courses, including juvenile justice, victimology, research methods, and introductory criminal justice courses.

Dr. Joshua Shadwick is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Criminal Justice, Social Work, and Sociology at Southeast Missouri State University. He teaches criminal justice courses related to policing, drugs, gangs, wildlife crime, research methods, and criminological theory. Dr. Shadwick also serves as chair of the Faculty and Student Engagement Committee.



Time: 10:00 am- 10:50 am

Title: Elevating undergraduate anthropology students' learning experiences with OER and non-disposable assignments


This presentation focuses on the teaching experience of Dr. Mark Kinney, a Missionary in Residence at Evangel University, who used an open textbook for his senior course “Enculturation and Spiritual Development Across Cultures” with an emphasis on anthropology. Being new to the world of digital learning, he had to overcome some challenges while working on his first course design. During this process he was introduced to the field of Open Educational Resources by one of the Evangel University librarians. The utilization of the OER was a game changer for him as an instructor, as well as for his students. As an instructor in the field of anthropology he found the OER to be abundant in scope and up-to-date editions, as well as professionally edited for easy usage in the university classroom. Not only did the free textbook help his students financially, but it also provided them with opportunities to contribute to the ongoing accumulation of knowledge in their selected field of study. This was achieved by assigning them the so called “non-disposable assignments,” which were published with Creative Commons licenses on the Open Educational Resources Commons (OERC). Dr. Kinney plans to engage his new students in the next offering of the same course by building on the content, which his previous students published on the OERC.

Learning Outcomes: Session’s participants will be provided with examples of students’ course work, a form for CC licenses to be signed by students, and will be introduced to “Open Author,” the free digital tool for content creation on the OERC:

Presenter(s): Mark Kinney and Rumyana Hristova

Dr. Mark Kinney served as a missionary in Argentina for many years where he also taught missions and systematic theology courses at the undergraduate level. He earned a master’s degree in Cross-Cultural Communication and a doctorate in Intercultural Studies at the Assemblies of God Theological Seminary (AGTS). He joined the faculty of Evangel University (EU) in 2022, where he is teaching anthropology courses at undergraduate level.

Rumyana Hristova is the Catalogue and Outreach Librarian at Evangel University and AGTS. She has also been serving as the coordinator for the OER initiatives at the EU campus since 2018. She earned a master’s degree in English and American Literature from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville and a master’s degree in Library and Information Science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC).



Keynote Presentation

Time: 12:00 Noon - 1:20 pm

Title: Degrees of Open: The how and why of incorporating open education into courses one step at a time

Presenter(s): Virginia Clinton-Lisell, PhD, is an Associate Professor in Educational Foundations and  Research at the University of North Dakota where she is a Rose Isabella Kelly Fischer  Professor. She holds a masters’ degree in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages  from New York University and a doctorate in Educational Psychology from the University of  Minnesota. Dr. Clinton-Lisell’s research focuses on open education and digital reading. 



Time: 1:30 pm- 2:20 pm

Title: Creating Open Educational Resources with Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Learning Experiences

Description: The increasing number of English as a Second Language (ESL) students seeking education, the escalating costs of tuition, and the high proportion of students from racial minorities dropping out call for course content that is accessible, affordable, and all-embracing. First, recent studies have consistently found that most Open Educational Resources (OER) are designed for learners with advanced levels of English proficiency, which counters the purpose of offering curriculum to the general public. First-generation students and immigrant students are disproportionally disadvantaged by not having early exposure to terminology spoken by family members working in specialized professions such as law or medicine. Second, annual statistics have repeatedly shown the costs of tuition at both public and private universities rising faster than inflation, which reverses the improvements that higher education has made for decades in creating pathways. The decreasing affordability of attending college has negatively impacted under-sourced students who did not come from families that can provide financial support or graduated from school districts that could find funding sources. Third, the Department of Education findings indicate the high dropout rates among under-represented students, such as Latinx males and Black males due to monetary and mental health issues. The lack of representation in textbooks and case studies has resulted in a learning environment that is devoid of the multiplicity of ideas and acknowledgment of different cultural influences. In this session, the presenter will provide strategies for course materials that integrate common English, everyday application assignments, and examples that resonate with students.

Learning Outcomes:

At the end of this session, the participants will have learned curriculum designs that incorporate accessible English, useful real-world applications, and relatable lived experiences that meet differentiated student needs in a costly and globalized higher education learning environment.

Presenter(s):Caroline Chance

Caroline is a lecturer in the Department of Kinesiology and Public Health at California Polytechnic University San Luis Obispo. Before her work in higher education, she worked in both the nonprofit and private sectors. During her previous work as a researcher, she witnessed the upward mobility disparities among minority populations, which has led her to improve education access by initiating feasibility studies and program designs. Her interdisciplinary approach to improving education has led her to serve as a consultant in providing training. She graduated from the University of California Berkeley with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and from Tufts University School of Medicine with a Master of Public Health.



Time: 1:30 pm - 2:20 pm

Title: Birds of a Feather: Open Education at Private Institutions


The birds of a feather discussion about promoting and developing an open education service model and/or program will be hosted by librarians Treasa Bane from Washington University Libraries and Quetzalli Barrientos from Gutman Library at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. We are two mid-career librarians at private universities who are navigating the labyrinth that is scholarly communications and its work. Our journey to being a Copyright and Scholarly Communications and Open Education Research Librarian has not been a linear one. We share the experience of ambiguity in our roles and building grassroot efforts. We’ll begin by discussing how this work starts with defining “open” and the powerful potential of creating resources with students as opposed to for students, clarifying misunderstandings, and pointing to existing work and examples that go by different terminology, like shared google documents for a group project. Next we’ll discuss how the methods of advocacy differ between students and instructors. Then we’ll discuss responding to resistance and also differing levels of knowledge from both groups—the vulnerability in getting it wrong from students and the loss of control and difficulty assessing success by instructors. Finally, we will facilitate a conversation where attendees brainstorm successes, difficulties, resources, questions, and ideas. Attendees will hopefully learn to better navigate ambiguity and be able to take next steps to find support or implement a community of practice. This session is geared for attendees from medium to large sized private institutions, but all are welcomed.

 Learning Outcomes:

-Audience members will be able to brainstorm what they need to build a community of practice, finding support, and sharing similar experiences with others -Audience members will be able to strategize and brainstorm working within their own open education landscape. -Audience members will be able to take student learning to the next level with open education, regardless of their comfort with open education.

Presenter(s):Treasa Bane and Quetzalli Barrientos

Treasa is responsible for supporting copyright information policy and education, delivering services and outreach to faculty, students, and staff regarding topics such as fair use, authors’ rights, Creative Commons licensing, and privacy that connect to teaching, research, and library services.

Quetzalli Barrientos is the Open Education Research Librarian at Gutman Library-Harvard Graduate School of Education. While she is the point person for open education at Gutman Library, her other duties include being a library liaison, student outreach, and conducting research appointments with students, faculty, and alumni. Prior to this position, Quetzalli’s prior library experience has included elements of teaching First Year Writing, conducting outreach to students via social media and collaborating with student centers on campus. She is excited to use her past experiences and skills to promote OER. Quetzalli has seven years of academic library experience. She graduated from the University of Illinois Champaign-Urbana in 2015 with a Masters in Library and Information Science. In 2013, she graduated from Illinois State University.



Time: 2:30 pm - 3:20 pm

Title: Visualizing OER Cost Savings with Open Data

Description: Open educational resources (OER) have reduced the cost of educational content for students, but quantifying these savings is challenging. In this talk, I describe my process of compiling and curating granular data on OER usage, and enrollment numbers. Using transparency-focused methods on data from the University of Missouri-St. Louis, I have built interactive Tableau dashboards showing substantial cost savings from OER adoption over the course of several semesters. These clear data visualizations make a compelling financial case for expanding OER initiatives. In this talk I discuss how openly sharing the methodology, raw data, and visualizations used in this project can empower more analyses of OER impacts in the future. With customizable data sets and dashboards, campuses can clearly demonstrate localized savings outcomes from OER adoption. This promotes additional OER use with targeted, customizable and verifiable data while upholding open values. This talk offers strategies for using open-data approaches to support your OER goals.

Learning Outcomes:

1) Identifying the challenges in quantifying exact cost savings figures from OER adoption initiatives 2) Understanding how compiling granular data sets and utilizing interactive dashboards can effectively demonstrate the financial benefits of OER 3) Finding strategies for coordinating with campus stakeholders to access essential OER savings metrics


Helena Marvin

Helena Marvin is the institutional repository, open educational resources and a reference librarian at the University of Missouri-St. Louis. She has had a long term fascination with open culture and technology and these days she feels very lucky to share open access articles, open data and open educational resources professionally.



Time: 2:30 pm - 3:20 pm

Title: What do students think of OER and Textbooks? Voices of Students at a Regional Missouri University


Southeast Missouri State University began an A&OER initiative in 2020 which included faculty workshops and surveys to support faculty use of A&OER. However, until last spring, student voices had not been included in the initiative. Inspired by a professor’s experience using A&OER in a classroom in 2019 and 2021, and sponsored by an internal grant, undergraduate students were surveyed. There were 422 students survey responses from whom 15 volunteers were randomly selected to join two focus groups. The responses were demographically representative of the student body except for slightly higher reported GPA and more upper-level students. Significant survey findings included barriers to reading as well as changes in reading activity and hours enrolled if materials were embedded in learning management systems. Explore focus group questions that allow students to elaborate on survey responses, their perceptions of a sample OER, and feedback on a campuswide A&OER initiative. Learn how a review of past research both galvanized and paralleled student comments. Discover the surprising results of a survey and two focus groups about student opinions of textbooks, faculty who use OER, and the impact of OER on course selection and student engagement with course materials. Explore OER as a possible solution to student and faculty identified challenges. Join a discussion about what might happen if A&OER were used more widely at Southeast and other campuses.

Learning Outcomes: 1. Participants will gain insights into student textbook preferences and frustrations. 2. Participants will recognize potential solutions A&OER can offer. 3. Participants will synthesize ideas presented by speakers and attendees to advance student learning and engagement by using A&OER.

Presenter(s):Stephanie Hallam, James Newman, and Mary Bangert

Stephanie Hallam is the Education Information Librarian at Southeast Missouri State University where she leads a campus-wide open educational resource (OER) initiative, supports departments in the College of Education, Health, and Human Studies, and develops the children’s literature collection. She has presented workshops on OER and open pedagogy at eight regional and national conferences. Stephanie enjoys hiking, dancing, and living with her husband and two beautiful daughters.

James Newman is an associate professor in the Department of Political Science, Philosophy and Religion at Southeast Missouri State University.

Mary Bangert is the Government Information & Literacy Librarian at Southeast Missouri State University. Bangert is currently involved in promoting government information OERs and advocating for collaboration between academic and school librarians to promote successful student transitions. A recipient of the Missouri Association of School Librarians Special Service Award, she was selected by her colleagues as district Teacher of the Year during her time in secondary education. Mary and her husband have three children and live on a sixth-generation family farm.


Time: 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Title: Happy Hour 


Have your favorite or OER -themed drink of choice and join us for a virtual Happy Hour! Discuss various OER topics in an informal (virtual) setting.