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Affordable Learning Solutions

As part of the California State University's Affordable Learning Solutions initiative, this guide is intended to lead Cal Maritime teaching faculty to a range of open-source instructional resources.

What are Open Education Resources?

Open educational resources (OER) are learning materials that are freely available under a license that allows them to be used, remixed, improved, and redistributed.  These include:

  • Learning content: full courses, course materials, content modules, learning objects, collections, and journals.
  • Tools: Software to support the creation, delivery, use, and improvement of open learning content, including searching and organization of content, content and learning management systems, content development tools, and online learning communities.
  • Implementation resources: Intellectual property licenses to promote open publishing of materials, design-principles, and localization of content.
    (Open educational resources. (2010, November 6). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia.)

For a good overview of OER and their application to teaching and learning, see "7 Things You Should Know About OER," a publication of the Educause Learning Initiative.

Higher Education Opportunities Act (HEOA)

In August 2008, the Higher Education Opportunities Act (HEOA) was signed into federal law. There are a number of HEOA provisions that impact the CSU. Complying with the HEOA requirements is a condition for the CSU receiving student financial aid from the Federal government.

For more information go to:

For a PowerPoint presentation, see: HEOA, the CSU, and You (PPT) 

CSU Affordable Learning Solutions

ALS is designed to enable faculty to choose and provide quality educational content that is more affordable for their students.  The ALS website is designed to:

  • Make it easy for faculty, staff, and students to find no/low-cost course content that can substitute for costly textbooks
  • Enable faculty to be recognized for their efforts in reducing costs for students
  • Share practices for using no/low cost digital content in CSU courses
  • Support campuses in customizing their strategies to enable affordable learning solutions