Many think open educational resources (OER) are the answer to reducing textbook costs. The education start-up panOpen has launched a new software platform it claims is a solution to making the collection and distribution of open content easier for instructors.
The platform, currently still in beta testing, allows faculty to build custom course libraries and share them with others around the world. The company has already partnered with nearly 900 subject-matter experts to collect and review content for business, chemistry, biology, psychology, and physics.
panOpen was started by Brian Jacobs, who also founded the online bookstore Akademos. While the service is free now, it could eventually charge between $15-$30 for content to fund customer support and analytics, according to a report in the student paper at the University of Connecticut.