JMU Open and Affordable Initiatives

The American Association of Colleges and Universities states that “Open Educational Resources are emerging as both a quality and an equity strategy for higher education that should be considered by all colleges and universities as they develop and revise their student success initiatives.”

Open Ed Institute

fantastical graphic of open laptop/book with icons pouring out

With this in mind, JMU has formed a group of representatives from across campus who are working to promote open education at JMU. This group was accepted into the American Association of Colleges and Universities (AAC&U) Institute on Open Educational Resources for the 2023-24 academic year, joining higher education institutions across the country in working toward similar goals.

AAC&U Institute Team

The members of JMU’s team participating in the AAC&U institute include:

  • Will Brown, Senior IT Consultant, Student Affairs
  • Malika Carter-Hoyt, Vice President Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
  • Oleksandr “Sasha” Kokhan, Associate Professor in Biophysical Chemistry and Faculty Senate Representative
  • Rudy Molina, Vice Provost for Student Academic Success and Enrollment Management
  • Liz Thompson, Open Education Librarian, JMU Libraries 


The team will know whether they have achieved their goals by tracking success in the following areas:

  • Decrease the cost of course materials at JMU
  • Increase usage of open educational materials in JMU courses
  • Improve JMU’s rates that track students’ academic success
  • Improve awareness of OER among faculty members
  • Improve accessibility and inclusion
  • Grow the institutional commitment to open educational materials
  • Grow the collection of open materials

Other JMU Initiatives

For years, JMU Libraries has been working behind the scenes to translate the concept of open education into tangible benefits for JMU students and faculty. 

For example:

  • We partnered with the JMU Registrar to create a “No/Low Cost” filter in the class enrollment system that allows students to easily find courses with affordable textbooks. 
  • We offer additional services that support affordable course materials, including Course Reserves, guidance on copyright, and scanning of articles and book chapters. 
  • We work hard to keep faculty informed about grants, workshops, and other opportunities to support their efforts to move to open and affordable course materials.
  • Our Open Education Librarian leads the Libraries’ open education efforts and helps faculty to find open textbooks and grants to adopt or create open course materials. 
    • In 2020-21, she also led a VIVA-funded effort to purchase digital copies of some books required for JMU classes and notified faculty when they were available so that students could access the books for free.
    • She also serves on SCHEV’s Open Virginia Advisory Committee and helped to update JMU’s Textbook Policy.

JMU Faculty Can Help

JMU faculty can be part of this campus-wide effort! Here are some ideas for getting started:

Questions or Ideas to Share?

Contact Liz Thompson, our Open Education Librarian, to share your ideas for open education at JMU.