Faculty Successes


Samuel Kerstein

 Kerstein photo                         

Samuel Kerstein, Department of Philosophy, College of Arts and Humanities, teaches “Contemporary Moral Issues” (PHIL 140) once a year.  Rather than requiring a textbook that students must purchase, Kerstein provides PDF files of articles and book chapters on his CANVAS site for the course. In seven years, no students have complained about this practice. The course often uses the very same material that is anthologized in expensive textbooks. Kerstein provides the pedagogical help sometimes contained in textbooks by posting an outline of each reading on CANVAS. Kerstein usually teaches around 160 students using free resources, saving each student approximately $100 and a cumulative savings to students of $16,000.

Scott Roberts

Scott Roberts photo                         

Scott Roberts from the UMD Department of Psychology, along with his colleague Ryan Curtis, has participated in the University System of Maryland's MOST (Maryland Open Source Textbook) initiative and developed an open source textbook, OpenPSYC, for their introductory psychology courses.  Free to all students and teachers under a Creative Commons license, OpenPSYC not only saves students money, but it also provides them with up-to-date information and offers an interactive educational experience.




Did You Know?

  • College textbook prices increased by 186% between 1986 and 2004. (U.S. Department of Education)
  • An open source textbook is just like any textbook, except it has a nonrestricted copyright license
  • UMD estimates students spend $1,130 on books and supplies. (Office of Admissions)
  • 48% of Maryland students say that textbook prices affect which/how many classes they choose to take. (SGA and MaryPIRG survey)
  • 65% of Maryland student consumers have opted out of buying a college textbook due to its high price. (SGA and MaryPIRG survey)
  • In Fall 2014, students saved $873,393.00 at the University Book Center (UBC) by purchasing used books and renting their textbooks. (University Book Center)

Students Spend