Tarleton State University has received a $172,139 Student Success Acceleration Implementation Grant from the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Fund to develop or expand initiatives that positively impact workforce transitions.
Tarleton’s grant program, “Developing University Infrastructure to Increase the Use of Open Educational Resources and Affordable Course Materials,” ties into the university’s strategic plan to have at least 90 percent of core curriculum lecture/lab courses utilize open educational resources by 2025.
“I appreciate faculty willingness to consider these resources as quality options that do not interfere with rigor while improving affordability for students that ultimately translates into increased retention,” said Dr. Diane Stearns, Tarleton Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs.
Aimee Shouse, Associate Provost and Associate Vice President for Curriculum and Faculty Affairs, is the principal investigator, with Lesley Leach, Associate Dean for Faculty Affairs and Development, and Dean of Libraries Katherine Quinnell serving as co-PIs. psychological sciences Assistant Professor Trina Geye and philosophy Assistant Karl Aho will lead the grant program, which is focused on building a culture of affordable course material usage across campus.
“Tarleton puts student success at the center of everything we do, and a significant part of that is students’ academic success,” Dr. Shouse said. “The cost of textbooks can be prohibitive for many students, and if students don’t purchase textbooks for a course, it puts them at a disadvantage in learning, completing their courses and, ultimately, completing their degree. The GEER grant puts us on a path to removing the barrier of textbook cost for Tarleton students.”
The grant is part of more than $12 million awarded to 60 institutions. It supports public and private/independent colleges, universities and health-related institutions affected by the pandemic.
“This project will take us one step closer to making a university education more accessible and affordable for all Tarleton Texans,” Dr. Leach said. “We are grateful to the Coordinating Board for investing in the university’s strategic vision to strengthen student success through increased affordability.”