Important: these are project "Goals" - not a mandate or requirement for anyone to use the 81 courses (in whole or in part)


  • design 81 high enrollment courses for face-to-face, hybrid and/or online delivery
  • lower textbook costs for students (< $30)
  • provide new resources for faculty to use in their courses
  • our college system fully engages the global open educational resources discussion.
  • improve course completion rates through good design and affordability

We will measure of the success of this project by:

  • Successfully designing and opening (to the world) 81 high quality courses.

  • The number of sections (in our system and globally) that use the 81 courses (in whole or in part).
    • In the Gates grant, the goal is listed as: "81 redesigned courses are adopted by 20% (64,200 students) of the total sections each quarter in the 2012-2013 academic year and increasing adoptions in subsequent academic years."
      • Increase number of sections available for 81 courses – using hybrid and online learning (completely optional).
        • Online / hybrid courses may save students money by reducing travel and daycare costs ... and may offer increased flexibility in students' schedules.
    • How do we track use of parts of courses? How much slicing and dicing qualifies the materials as being used? We'll wrestle with this throughout the project.

  • Money saved by students due to not purchasing expensive textbooks.
    • Estimate $6.4+ million in savings annually if 20% of the colleges’ sections adopt the 81 redesigned courses.

  • The number of project team members who learn how to find, adapt, adopt, use, and contribute to open resources.
    • Project faculty and staff making explicit the processes to find, adapt, adopt, and use open resources ... may be viewed as equally important as designing the 81 courses, possibly translating to a much higher reduction in cost to students over the course of those faculty members' careers.
    • An overarching goal of this project is to begin building a culture of openness and sharing throughout Washington’s 34 Community and Technical Colleges.

  • Completion rates increase 10% in each redesigned course. The goal is to have 95% completion rates in all designed courses.
    • How Might the Completion Rates for the 81 Courses be Increased?
      • Note: the other three parts of the Gates grant strongly address student retention and completion.

      1. Better designed courses will potentially lead to higher completion rates.
      2. Significantly reducing the costs of instructional materials (instructional materials will be < $30) will potentially help students stay in school.
        • This project is new research on whether significantly reducing textbooks costs improves completion rates. The idea is that the cost of textbooks is a barrier to students. We have all certainly seen students who could not get started on time — and ultimately did not complete the class -- because they couldn’t afford to buy their textbooks. Will removing that cost barrier make a difference?
        • With Their Whole Lives Ahead of Them (Report)
          • News release / Report / Washington Post article
          • The cost of textbooks and other fees besides tuition affected students financially:
            • 60% of students who did not graduate
            • 58% of students who did graduate
          • How would the following help someone whose circumstances are similar to yours.... in getting a college degree? Percent who say the following will help a lot:
            • Did not graduate: Cut the cost of attending college by 25 percent = 78%
            • Graduated: Cut the cost of attending college by 25 percent = 83%
            • Note: WA Community and Technical College tuition, for full-time students, is roughly $3000/year & textbooks are roughly $1000/year = 25 percent
          • "Most young adults who started college but didn’t finish left because they needed to work more to make ends meet, according to a recent survey of more than 600 individuals aged 22 to 30 by Public Agenda."