Limestone University Awarded South Carolina Affordable Learning Grant

Monday, November 9, 2020 - 3:15pm
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Limestone University is one of eight colleges and universities in South Carolina to recently receive the South Carolina Affordable Learning Grant for its Open Education Resources campaign.

The Partnership Among South Carolina Academic Libraries (PASCAL) awarded $19,000 to affordable learning projects at eight member institutions through its South Carolina Affordable Learning Grant program. The grants will increase institutional awareness of affordable learning resources, encourage the adoption, revision, or development of Open Education Resources, and promote faculty course use of library licensed materials in their teaching.

A PASCAL initiative, the grant program seeks to reduce the overall cost of higher education for students by promoting the use of quality low-cost and no-cost learning materials.

Limestone’s Open Education Resources information campaign is a part of the University’s drive to bring affordable learning awareness to campus. With the support of the Provost, the University is partnering with its Center for Teaching Learning and Innovation, the Office of Academic Success, the Office of Equity and Inclusion, and the Director of the Nursing Program (as the faculty representative) in order to bring awareness to Limestone administrators, faculty, and staff regarding affordable learning initiatives.

“The issue of affordable learning is a growing concern on college campuses nationwide and it is no different for Limestone,” said Lizah Ismail, Director of the Library. “We are excited to receive this grant award as this will go toward funding activities that will raise affordable learning awareness on campus.”

The main goals of this project are to conduct an information campaign that would both educate and motivate administrators, faculty, and staff to recognize the substantial cost-saving value of adopting affordable learning options for students. The project is meant to encourage faculty to consider Open Education Resources options (including library and PASCAL resources) for their courses and incentivize faculty to review Open Textbooks for potential use in their courses. Faculty will be awarded stipends based on established criteria.

“Our students struggle with affordable issues at all levels, including textbook purchases and access which impacts enrollment and retention,” noted Limestone Provost Dr. Monica Baloga. “This grant award will help Limestone University move toward motivating faculty to consider affordable learning options by offering faculty stipends to offset additional work needed for Open Education Resources adoption.”

Grant awards will support institutions’ efforts to expand awareness and adoption of low or no-cost course materials.

South Carolina Affordable Learning Grant campus partners at Limestone include: Dr. Justin Bailey, Director of Saints Center for Teaching, Learning and Innovation; Selena Blair, Director of Office of Equity and Inclusion; Justin Davis, Information Literacy Librarian and University Archivist; Rachel Hill, Executive Director of Academic Success, Division of Student Success; Ismail, Director of the Library; Janet Ward, Assistant Director of the Library and Web Services Librarian; and Amber Williams, DPN, Director of Nursing Program.