25 Portland Community College nursing students gathered to kick off a year-long curriculum review by students, in order to discover whether any required textbooks that are unnecessary; to perform an environmental scan for materials to cover content at no cost to the student the next time the course is taught; and then for subsequent courses to be implemented with the revised book list and updated with no-cost resources. This project is supported by an Open Oregon Educational Resources grant, with Jane Palmieri, nursing faculty, as the grant lead.
There is a known need for open nursing textbooks as currently there are no texts available to replace any of the required texts in PCC’s nursing program curriculum. Nursing students are burdened with an initial purchase of 14 textbooks and 3 additional titles while completing their Associates in Applied Science in Nursing degree. Students are expected to use their textbooks throughout the 10 courses in the program. The nursing faculty must participate in a program-wide consensus process in order to add or remove a book from the required reading list.
The Open RN project, funded by a $2.5 million dollar grant from the Department of Education to the Chippewa Valley Technical College, will create 5 OER Nursing Textbooks with 25 associated Virtual Reality scenarios. These textbooks will be reviewed when they are available.
Students use online forms to analyze required program textbook utilization, with the aim of eliminating underutilized books; and to recommend no-cost resources that they have discovered on their own that meet learning objectives and can replace expensive textbooks. Student incentives include course points, breakfast burritos, raffle prizes, and an end-of-year party to celebrate the completed work.