Textbook Success Program

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The Textbook Success Program is a professional development package that equips faculty, librarians, administrators, and managers with the tools they need to make great open textbooks. Join a cohort of faculty members, program leads, and other open textbook creators for a twelve-session course + regular support calls* with OER professionals. Learn using Rebus resources developed over years of managing OER publishing.

We’ve worked with numerous open textbook projects, helping them through the OER publishing process. As we’ve learned, the most powerful tool in OER creation is an active community, and we’ve seen the power of bringing creators together in a shared support framework. This is why we built the Textbook Success Program with community, collaboration, and engagement in mind. In addition to providing extensive open resources, we work with groups of creators (as well as program administrators) in an open, interactive online course, walking them through the publishing process and connecting them with fellow creators around the world.


“The Rebus Textbook Success Program is a masterpiece of open education content, organization, and community-building. The amazing Apurva Ashok is insightful, knowledgeable, helpful, and supportive — she skillfully guides a TSP cohort through a host of important (and some complex) topics, keeping everyone involved, building group cohesion, supporting everyone to continue to contribute and build relationships. Absolutely a tremendously worthwhile program to help build capacity for OER creation projects and equip participants to tackle skillfully the many issues which will inevitably come up in a big (valuable!) OER project.”
Jonathan Poritz, OER Coordinator,
Associate Professor of Mathematics, 
Colorado State University – Pueblo,
Graduate of the May 2020 Cohort

“The level of support and guidance offered through the textbook success project was outstanding.”
Judah Viola, Associate Professor of Psychology,
National Louis University

Graduate of the May 2020 Cohort

“The Rebus Textbook Success Program was an invaluable resource for helping me connect with the broader open community, and it certainly helped my team of educators develop its open textbook. Detailed scaffolding is there for those who are less familiar with open archives, software, and other resources. The Rebus support team, especially Apurva, fosters encouragement and support. And those who participate in the program become part of your life. It’s really the perfect professional development experience for those working on OER textbooks.”
Joel Gladd, Instructor, Department of English,
College of Western Idaho
Graduate of the February 2020 Cohort

“I really appreciated the opportunity to zoom in close to the process of developing an OER team and project from the ground up. As a librarian, I’ve promoted OER use and helped authors share completed works, but the TSP expanded my knowledge of the whole endeavor of textbook authoring.”
Matt Ruen, Scholarly Communications Outreach Coordinator
Grand Valley State University Libraries
Graduate of the February 2020 Cohort

“When I started the Textbook Success Program, I did not know the first thing about curating and creating a book using Open Education Resources. By the end of the program, my colleagues and I were able to produce and pilot a modular first-year composition textbook designed around our state’s learning outcomes for written communication. The “textbook” itself has been invaluable to my teaching and has shaped my thinking about pedagogy. I am so grateful for this opportunity to learn and grow in a supportive, knowledgeable learning community.”
Liza Long, Assistant Professor, Department of English,
College of Western Idaho
Graduate of the February 2020 Cohort

“The Textbook Success Program facilitated growth in my knowledge of OER and teaching pedagogy. Without this program, my project would not be where it is. I highly recommend this program to anyone working in OER.”
Courtney Karasinski, Associate Professor and Director of Speech-Language Pathology, Grand Valley State University,
Graduate of the February 2020 Cohort

“The Textbook Success Program has been fantastic. The materials are clear, useful, and often address aspects of OER I hadn’t even conceived of prior to the program. The facilitators are the best I’ve worked with, and their approach to online meetings has even informed how I run meetings and remote instruction. The opportunity to work alongside other teams has been very encouraging and rewarding. Although I was already familiar with open publishing and pedagogy before the program, I now feel far better equipped.”
Ryan Randall, Librarian, Instruction Coordinator & Faculty Outreach, College of Western Idaho
Graduate of the February 2020 Cohort

“If you want your open access material to be more than just a resource for your specific class, then this program will give you the skills to move beyond your classroom. Some of the material seems daunting but the end result of our efforts will now be much better after going through this program. Also, all open access texts will benefit from the higher quality of material that this program promotes. The cross-disciplinary nature of our cohort helped make us realize that we are all in this together to improve education… Many academics dream about writing books or need to write books for tenure. This program makes those dreams come true in many ways and facilitates better educational opportunities for students.”
Virginia Sisson, Instructional Professor of Geology, Director of Summer Field Geology, Co-director of Geoscience Learning Center, University of Houston
Graduate of the February 2020 Cohort

“The Textbook Success Program instilled me with the confidence that we were releasing high quality open education materials packaged professionally and with the backing of a support team (academically, emotionally, and fiscally). The collaborative nature of the project ensured that we were integrating diverse perspectives and approaches to not only content but delivery and teaching approaches as well.”
Amy Minervini, Instructor, Humanities Division,
Lewis-Clark Community College
Graduate of the February 2020 Cohort

“This program helps a project and individual grow and strengthen as a designer/developer or other roles in a project over time. All the resources to build a project are wonderful and positively affect growth of a project and community around a project.”
Julie Meyer, Instructional Designer, Instructional Services
Penn State Schuylkill
Graduate of the February 2020 Cohort

“Being part of Rebus gave me the opportunity to have an outlet where I can write my book and have it accessible to my students at no cost for them.”
Franziska Borders, Adjunct of German,
Boise State University 

Graduate of the February 2020 Cohort

“The TSP is a fantastic way for individuals and teams to learn about the process of creating, sharing, and improving instructional materials. Information about book-production and distribution is helpful to both novice and experienced writers, editors, adopters, and adapters of educational resources. Thanks for sharing a collaborative community of educational practice with us!”
Michael Polgar, Associate Professor of Sociology, Pennsylvania State University
Graduate of the February 2020 Cohort

“The TSP was a focused journey through open publishing that inspired me and my fellow educators to play with tools,  expectations, and interests in pursuit of new creative goals”
Jonathan Lashley, Associate Chief Academic Officer,
Idaho State Board of Education
Graduate of the February 2020 Cohort

“This program informs and educates participants on every facet of creating an OER textbook.”
Graduate of the February 2020 Cohort

“The Rebus TSP has been an invaluable experience that has lifted the veil off the publishing process in various ways, and has given me the confidence to continue supporting these projects in the future, as well as possibly endeavoring on my own at some point.”
Amanda Wentworth, Digital Humanities and Learning Coordinator, SUNY Geneseo
Graduate of the October 2019 Cohort

“I am very grateful to have participated in the Textbook Success Program. The incoming editor for a new open textbook (Donna) and I joined at the very beginning of our project. Our project has thus benefited from having a common foundation in content development, review, publishing, and marketing, and reduced substantive efforts for me in providing all of the background knowledge (and more) a new author might need. It also gave me the freedom to participate as a learner. The cohort model was wonderful for sharing ideas, strategies, problems, and exploring tools and solutions. Apurva is extremely knowledgable and patient; I highly recommend taking this program with her.”
Anita Walz, Assistant Director of Open Education and Scholarly Communication Librarian, Virginia Tech
Graduate of the October 2019 Cohort

“The Textbook Success Program was a great opportunity to learn about the wide variety of projects that are happening in the open publishing world. In addition to learning about the entire open publishing process from someone with a lot of experience, it was really valuable to have people learning and applying new skills and thought processes alongside me.”
Samantha Dannick, Engineering & Scholarly Communication Librarian, Alfred University
Graduate of the October 2019 Cohort

“The main goals of this program were to provide a rich, collaborative and fun experience in open publishing. These goals were successfully achieved.”
Walcir Cardoso, Professor, Education, Concordia University
Graduate of the October 2019 Cohort

“I would encourage anyone who is considering authoring or editing an open book to take a part of this program. The advice and strategies are incredibly practical and the cohort of like-minded professionals lent support along the way. As the publishing process moved ahead, we were able to learn from others who had previous experience. This program served as a life line to someone who was a novice to publishing in the open.”
Graduate of the October 2019 Cohort

“The Textbook Success Program has helped me gain the insights to plan publishing projects with confidence. Learning from others going through the same process for the first time provided valuable perspectives on difference ways to undergo the steps of publishing. I appreciated the advice and support of the other members and the Rebus team. I’d recommend this program for anyone looking to increase their knowledge of managing open publishing projects to ensure it is done thoughtfully and successfully.”
Graduate of the October 2019 Cohort

“The Textbook Success Program provides invaluable knowledge and resources for embarking on a publishing project!”
Graduate of the October 2019 Cohort

“The Textbook Success Program provides a very safe and supportive space for people to learn about the ins and outs of open textbook publishing.”
Graduate of the October 2019 Cohort

“The Textbook Success Program is a whirlwind tour through Rebus’s extremely well-planned and -organized approach to open publishing. The weekly sessions in the first, intensive professional development phase are full of insightful material and engaging conversations. The facilitator was responsive to the group’s needs and kind and supportive of all of us.”
Jonathan Poritz, OER Coordinator, Director of Teaching and Learning, Associate Professor, Colorado State University-Pueblo
May 2020 Cohort

“I found the course to be engaging, thorough and informative. The facilitator was engaging and always available for questions and feedback. I absolutely felt supported and feel confident that I will be supported in the future. I couldn’t ask for more.”
William Redmon-Palmer, Community Outreach Liaison, Baltimore OUTloud
May 2020 Cohort

Program Graduates

May 2020 Cohort

  • Bill Palmer
  • Denise Henry
  • Frances Cincotta
  • Geraldine Palmer
  • Jenny Piazza
  • John Redmond-Palmer
  • Jonathan Poritz
  • Judah Viola
  • Mark Branson
  • Maureen Reb
  • Robin Armstrong
  • Todd Rogers
  • Werner Westermann
  • Zachary Townsend

February 2020 Cohort

  • Amy Minervini
  • Andrew Horning
  • Ani Alcocer
  • Ann Abbott
  • Annie Gaines
  • Ariana Santiago
  • Becca Sibrian
  • Brad Antill
  • Bryan McGreary
  • Courtney Karasinski
  • Daniel Hauptvogel
  • Elisabeth Shook
  • Elizabeth Long
  • Franziska Borders
  • Gemma Morawski
  • Geraldine Terry
  • Jackie Rander
  • Jamaica Ritcher
  • Jessica (Xiaoxia) Xie
  • Joel Gladd
  • Jonathan Lashley
  • Julie Meyer
  • Matt Ruen
  • Melina Zavala
  • Michael Love
  • Michael Polgar
  • Paul Belue
  • Ryan Randall
  • Sara Davis
  • Sylvia Johnson
  • Tyler McLane
  • Valia Tatarova
  • Virginia (Jinny) Sisson
  • Wade Shumaker

October 2019 Cohort

  • Alexis Clifton
  • Alisa Lazear
  • Allison Brown
  • Amanda Wentworth
  • Anita R. Walz
  • Anne-Marie Sénécal
  • Chloe Lei
  • Christine Faraday
  • Donna Westfall-Rudd
  • Ed Beck
  • Evan Howard Ashford
  • Jeanine Cook-Garard
  • Joan Buckley
  • Joseph Stabb
  • Kerry Kautzman
  • Kimberly Davies-Hoffman
  • Marcia D. Williams-Hailey
  • Mary Joseph
  • MaryAnn Snow
  • Michael Barcomb
  • Samantha Dannick
  • Susana Castillo-Rodriguez
  • Walcir Cardoso

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Textbook Success Program?

The Textbook Success Program is the pairing of a 12-week course and a monthly check-ins regimen for teams creating open textbooks. Participants will join a group made up of project teams from their institution as well as teams from other universities and colleges. The entire open textbook process, from ideation to adoption tracking, will be covered over the first 12 weeks. Once the course portion is complete, monthly check-ins with the group and the Rebus team will be held for nine months.

Who is the Textbook Success Program for?

The Program is for teams with institutional funding for OER creation. One to three team leaders per project should attend the course and check-ins. OER program coordinators from the institutions represented are also welcome. The goal is to create a supportive learning community, build an institution’s capacity for OER creation in the future, and encourage the growth of OER communities on campus.

I do not have institutional support, can I still participate?

The cost of the Textbook Success Program might be prohibitive to the individual and it is designed to teach OER creation while supporting institutional programs. That said, projects without institutional support can participate if they can raise the funds. They can also apply for the Rebus TSP subsidy for projects working on underserved disciplines and by underrepresented peoples. The subsidy will be available as of Summer 2020.

How many projects do I need to participate?

We’re aiming to fill cohorts with ten projects representing two institutions, but we also want to respond to the needs of a range of institutions. We accept single projects, but there is a discounted rate for institutions with more than three projects. Request a consultation, and let us know how many projects you have.

What kinds of projects do you accept?

We are looking for open textbook projects in the broadest sense. That can mean a book created from scratch, an adaptation, ancillary materials, or a combination of these. Because the creation process is iterative and cycles back on itself, projects can be at a variety of stages of creation and still benefit from the course and regular check-ins.

When does the Textbook Success Program begin?

We understand that the school year is busy for faculty and administrators so start dates and schedules are flexible. To schedule your start date, we will work together with you and the other members of your cohort.

Why is this a paid program?

Ever since we began supporting open textbook creation, we knew we would have to find ways to keep our services available in the long term. One way that we are doing that is to create infrastructure (a platform, guides, templates, etc.) that anyone can use and remains openly available, remixable, and customizable. In order to keep these tools free, updated, and relevant, we need to pay our people. Yes, we have funding from the Hewlett Foundation, but we are working on sustainable solutions for the organization and the community. As such, we have created a paid offering that will provide intensive and valuable guidance to teams with institutional support. The funds received from the Textbook Success Program will support the program itself as well as our other initiatives and regular operations.

Are the resources used in the Textbook Success Program open and licensed CC BY?

Yes! We’ll be using The Rebus Guide to Publishing Open Textbooks (So Far) which is open, licensed CC BY, and available in multiple formats. All other resources created for the Textbook Success Program are open and licensed CC BY. You can find these regularly updated and customized for each cohort on our platform.

*Support calls last for one year from the program start date

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