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Newsroom: Affordable Learning Impact

Louisiana sees $26.8 million in student savings with open and affordable textbooks and materials that have impacted more than 126,000 higher education students

LOUIS: The Louisiana Library Network, a program of the Louisiana Board of Regents, is excited to announce $26.8 million in reported savings for 126,306 higher education students in the state since 2012.  Dr. Teri Gallaway, Associate Commissioner and Executive Director for LOUIS, commented, “Post-secondary education students in Louisiana spend an average of $1200 per year on textbooks and materials for their classes. In Louisiana we have the second highest rate of food insecurity in the United States. When students are struggling to afford the most basic life necessities, we want to do all we can to reduce the financial burden of textbook and material costs. Academic librarians have been leaders on their campuses to gain support from faculty, administrators, and students for the adoption of open and affordable education resources. We can clearly see that these efforts have paid off by saving more than 126,000 students close to $27 million!”

Over the winter, LOUIS member libraries contributed their Return-on-Investment (ROI) numbers for Open Education Resources (OER) and Affordable Education Resources (AER) adoptions. The ROI reports the number of students in courses that have adopted titles made available through LOUIS’ Affordable Learning Louisiana programs and the associated savings. For AER, programs included Curriculum Driven and Evidence Based acquisitions, and Perpetual Access Collections funded through LOUIS. Also reported were OER savings from programs including OpenStax, the Open Education Network, and LOUIS’ competitive Faculty Cohort and Course Transformation programs. Additional data collected reflected savings from the Inclusive Access agreement negotiated by LOUIS, and from no cost and low-cost course programs at the Louisiana Community and Technical College System.

The impact of OER and AER adoptions is felt by students and faculty across all types of post-secondary education institutions in Louisiana. Savings came from 38 institutions, reflecting all public and private systems in the state. Of note, since the conception of this coordinated work in 2012, Bossier Parish Community College has saved 10,750 students $3.3 million, while Louisiana State University Shreveport has saved more than 29,000 students $3.2 million. For more information, explore the interactive display of the members’ student savings and impact.

Impacts will continue to grow thanks to LOUIS’ award of a $2M grant award for the Open Textbooks Pilot Program from the U.S. Department of Education. This will result in the creation of 25 Dual Enrollment general education open courses, with the potential to reduce costs and improve outcomes for approximately 20,000 high school students and 250,000 total enrollments statewide per academic year.  

LOUIS is a consortium of 47 public and private college and university member libraries in the state of Louisiana. This partnership was formed in 1992 by the library deans and directors at these institutions, in order to create a cost-effective collaboration among the institutions for the procurement of library technology and resources. For questions, contact Laurie Blandino at