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Workshop Topic Detail

Institutionalizing OER: Tips, Tricks, and Strategies


This highly interactive workshop focuses on strategies to expand the use of open educational resources (OER) on an institution-wide scale. Initially, the presenter explores a variety of tips, tricks, and resources for finding discipline-relevant OER and evaluating it to ensure it meets desired learning objectives and is both accurate and accessible. Next, through a hands-on activity, participants discover how OER are ideally suited to enhance diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) in the classroom. Using the framework developed by OpenStax (Rice University), the presenter explores specific strategies and techniques used to analyze course materials to ensure inclusive and equitable instructional content. The workshop concludes by exploring strategies and tips for promoting an institution-wide OER adoption initiative. Both a macro and micro view of lessons learned by two Florida College System institutions will be shared. Come ready to be engaged and leave with a variety of strategies and a smorgasbord of resources that can fuel faculty adoption and implementation of OER and ignite your institution’s transformation through OER adoption on an institution-wide scale which can foster a greater sense of belonging and engagement for ALL your students.

By the end of this workshop, participants know or be able to:

    • Have the confidence and resources to find, evaluate, adopt, and adapt OER for your classroom.
    • Have the confidence to review course materials and enhance DEI in your curriculum.
    • Have the confidence to advocate for the expanded, institution-wide use of OER at your institution.

Plans for Audience Participation and Interaction:

Active engagement activities are embedded throughout the workshop to engage participants, get them to reflect upon the material as it is introduced, and showcase activities they can apply in their classrooms. Polling questions are strategically used to get a quick sense of audience experience in various topics and their willingness to try different activities.Chat rooms are used to encourage participants to respond to specific questions.Breakout rooms are used so participants can engage with each other in small groups and share their perceptions about the activities described, as well as participate in a hands-on activity involving reviewing curricular materials for inclusion and equity using the OpenStax DEI framework. At the conclusion of the workshop, each participant completes a 3-2-1 Activity during which they reflect on the workshop and identify three things they learned, two things they want to learn more about, and one thing they can’t wait to share with someone else.


Facilitator Photo

Erik Christensen holds engineering degrees from the U.S. Naval Academy and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He is a registered professional engineer in the Commonwealth of Virginia. His first career was in the U.S. Navy where he served for 23 years as an engineering duty officer and deep-sea salvage diver. Erik subsequently taught physics, astronomy, and astrobiology at South Florida State College for twelve years before becoming the dean of applied sciences and technologies for five years. Erik retired from South Florida State College in 2021 and was awarded the title of dean emeritus. He continues to teach astronomy online and support professional development focused on the flipped classroom, open educational resources, and soft skills. Erik continues to be regularly asked to provide keynote presentations and faculty development for various colleges; is an invited speaker at the SACSCOC Summer Institute; facilitates soft skills workshops for colleges, high schools, and local businesses; and is a faculty mentor for the American Association of Colleges and Schools’ Institute on Open Educational Resources where he provides in-depth, hands-on mentoring for three colleges each year. Erik regularly presents at national conferences on the innovative and creative strategies he uses to actively engage his students.