Pikes Peak Community College is offering a unique program to make education more affordable for their students. Instead of having to purchase an expensive text book for each class, now students will have a cheaper alternative for certain courses.
Some classes are offering a free digital version of the textbook to save students some money. We talked with one student who says this program is a game changer!
Shannan Craine is in her last semester at PPCC this summer and is majoring in Anthropology. She was able to take advantage of the open educational resources program for her psychology class and says not having to purchase the textbook and having the material available on the first day was a huge benefit.
"I would say an anxiety reliever first of all," said Shannan, "Second of all it helps the overall cost of my tuition, and coming from someone who does need Pell Grant and financial aid and all the assistance possible it makes a big difference."
Here's how it works. The OER program allows faculty to create digital versions of textbooks for students, so every student has the book day one. If they want a print version, they can purchase one for a minimal cost.
Right now the program is offered for 17 different courses. About 15,000 students have been able to take advantage of it and thanks to a $40,000 grant from the Colorado Department of Education they're hoping to expand the program in future semesters.