Volume 24 Issue 3 Introduction
As always, Oregon Librarians are on the cutting edge of identifying our patrons’ crucial needs and creatively finding ways to remedy these needs. Providing our communities access to otherwise unobtainable resources that support growth and learning has always been among our shared goals as librarians. We know that by providing these resources, we are enhancing inclusive community engagement and providing a crucial contribution for both individuals and society as a whole.
A pressing issue at hand that speaks to both individuals and our society is access to higher education. Oregon’s college students are facing increasing barriers to accessing a college education, opting to delay, or in many cases, permanently putting off attending college due to rising costs. K–12 schools also face seemingly endless budget constraints. Trimming the budget by aging out textbooks or limiting the purchase of textbooks to a “classroom only set” are budget strategies that often make it to the bargaining table. Surprisingly perhaps, it is not just the rising cost of tuition. The cost of textbooks has outpaced almost every other consumer good—including food, healthcare, and housing (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2016). We can close this gap. Academic Librarians have found themselves embracing a new opportunity with the advent of Open Educational Resources (OER).