Author Archive

  • Portrait of the author

    Shifting Out of Neutral into OER

    I was eager to find ways to lessen the financial burden of being a college student in a university system that was once and should still be free to attend. I struggled to find resources that could make my courses a zero-cost experience and introduce students to critical traditions in psychology that are typically excluded in mainstream psychology textbooks and curricula.

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  • Photograph of author reading large book, next to a mildly surprised-looking brown dog.

    Increasing Engagement via Zero Cost

    It felt wrong, from the beginning, to require my students to find the money and spend so much on a book we would only read a few texts from, [made up of] classics of literature that largely belong to the public domain.... I needed to learn how to make this right and allow my students to engage with my course materials without having to go penniless for it.

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  • Knowledge, Power, and OER

    Encountering a paywall on my way to some piece of scholarship prompts me into critically questioning the systems of power that keep people in and out of the spaces where knowledge circulates and is transformed and grows, and in/out of the borders of peer-reviewed research in the various fields of specialized knowledge.

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  • “Researcher first, teacher second”: Time-Saving Suggestions for Open-Access Teaching

    Whenever I thought about exchanging my textbook for open access materials, I was cowed by the amount of time and effort I imagined such a process taking. I had spent years designing my slides, quizzes, lectures, and course schedules around my textbook—how could I square a complete course overhaul with the axiom of “researcher first, teacher second”?

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  • Defending Music Appreciation Against Its Devotees

    A music appreciation course, even one centered on the traditional body of European literate music, can have an emancipatory effect. [This effect], however, is limited in starkly practical terms by the availability of its pedagogical materials.

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  • OA/OER is a Liberatory Political Act

    This is the tenth in our current series of short essays by participants in the Open Knowledge Fellowship coordinated by the Mina Rees Library, these from Fellows in the Spring 2022 cohort. Fellows share insight into the process of converting a syllabus to openly-licensed and/or […]

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  • Performing History with OER

    With so much knowledge and information hidden behind paywalls, the vital cultural work that humanities scholars do will struggle to have a significant impact on the world beyond the walls of academia.

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  • Mixing & Matching Open Educational Resources

    I soon found that not one text fits all. Some excluded prominent musical traditions and genres, while others contained outdated embedded YouTube links. I wondered if I could mix and match supplementary resources while keeping everything open (and how I could do so legally!).

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  • Opening Music

    My favorite newly-discovered resource is the Massachusetts Hip-Hop Archive, maintained by the University of Massachusetts, Boston. This archive houses hundreds of tapes made by locally-known emcees active in and around Boston during the 1980s.

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  • Reading at the Margins of Open Access

    The workshops introduced me to resources I had no idea existed and with that, to the immense possibilities of OA and OER to enrich our courses not only in terms of public access but also our own imagination as scholars and instructors.

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