Opening World Regional Geography: A Case Study

Caitlin Finlayson


A growing body of research has demonstrated that open educational resources (OER) provide an opportunity for improvements in learning outcomes compared to traditional texts. This project builds on the Open Education Group’s COUP framework to explore student and faculty use and perceptions of an open education World Regional Geography textbook. World Regional Geography is a lower-level course that is typically taught using traditional methods and with an emphasis on breadth over depth. As this case study explores, however, the creation and use of OER has provided an opportunity to completely reconfigure the course using a flipped classroom approach. Further, this study finds a statistically significant difference in student perception of OER before and after using the open course textbook, a significant difference in how often students read the book, and an overall positive response from students. Shifting to an open textbook has thus transformed and revitalized the class both from a student and an instructor perspective.


open educational resources; geography; open textbooks

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