Open textbooks are a type of open educational resources (OER) that are available to freely access and share under an open copyright license. Open textbooks are available digitally, accessed online, or through shareable formats, to be freely used by anyone: students, instructors, librarians, and members of the public. In general, they can be modified, printed, shared, retained, revised, and reused. If the work has been released with a Creative Commons or other open-copyright licenses, the user must adhere to that license’s legal requirements.
Students spend a lot of money on textbooks. Alternatives to the expensive textbooks that come from commercial publishers are open educational resources, or OER.
But, are these free resources as effective or of the same quality as textbooks? The research says yes.
This video by Research Shorts summarizes the available research synthesized in Hilton, J. (2016) Open educational resources and college textbook choices: a review of research on efficacy and perceptions.
Calculus by OpenStax [divided into 3 volumes for quarter-term delivery]