Skip to main content

Open and Affordable Course Materials

Option 2: Create / Author an Open Textbook

Proposals are invited to create/author a substantially new open textbook to support an upcoming course/program at Queen's.  A maximum of $7,500 is available per course.

Eligibility: Applications are encouraged for large undergraduate courses and/or courses for courses with high-cost traditional ‘closed’ textbooks.

You may be interested in this essay by Tony Bates: Writing an online, open textbook: is it worth it?

How to Apply

Submit a Proposal to Create/Author an Open Textbook, linked below.

Submission deadline: October 16, 2017 (now closed). 

If you have any questions or comments, please email:

Evaluation Criterion

Project proposals will be evaluated using a rubric that balances the following criteria to prioritize the quality of proposals and their potential impact:

Criteria / Weight


Quality (40%) 

  • The project description and objectives:
    • Clearly articulated and reasonable
    • Are mapped to specific course learning outcomes or competencies 
    • Indicate proposed subject matter to be addressed
    • Indicate proposed assessment strategies
  • The Project Plan Overview includes clearly defined project milestones such as a high-level overview of:
    • The project pan (timelines, budget estimates, resources)
    • Approaches in content design supporting the innovative uses of technologies and/or pedagogies
    • ​An initial conceptualization and/or content map for the book
    • Approximate timelines for the completion of the project (e.g project plan, book outline; final copy; editorial processes; review and publication etc.,)
    • Approaches to ensure the future sustainability of the project e.g. how open content will be maintained and kept up to date.



The Impact Assessment Plan clearly describes how you will determine the use, effectiveness and impact of your project, including: 

  • Estimated student savings compared to grant amount
  • Estimated number of students who will take course
  • How content will be made openly available at Queen’s
  • Articulate how content will be developed to promote remixing, reuse and redistribution by individual educators to meet their own course plans.

Budget (25%)

The proposal clearly outlines: 

  • Estimated cost projections and priorities of the project at a high-level
  • The budget does not exceed the maximum amount allowed per course $7500
  • Staff roles associated with the respective cost estimates (e.g. subject matter expert, instructional designer, project manager, etc.), provide FTE percentage for each phase of the project, and rate/cost
  • Information about any other direct costs included in the project.

Eligible Expenses:

  • Salary costs associated with hiring an educational designer
  • Salary costs associated with hiring a research assistant, etc;
  • In-kind support
  • Costs associated with editing or copy-editing, peer review etc.


Proposal evaluation process:

Applications to Create / Create/Author an Open Textbook will be evaluated by the Open and Affordable Course Materials Working Group.  Applicants can expect to receive a written response to their application later in the Fall semester.  

Requirements for successful grant recipients:

  • Share your work with an appropriate open license so that others can easily adopt and reuse.
  • Work with the Open and Affordable Course Materials Working Group to develop a timeline of deliverables, and assessment plan (once your textbook is completed).
  • Publicize your work by providing the Open and Affordable Course Materials Working Group with press-worthy updates; participate in related events; and post your adoption on the Open and Affordable Course Materials Working Group Project Page.