Metro Vancouver, B.C. – The price of university textbooks has skyrocketed by more than three times the rate of inflation.
“In my view, it is reprehensible that B.C. students are so often forced to choose between groceries and textbooks,” said Dr. Rajiv Jhangiani, a psychology instructor at Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU).
Jhangiani is a passionate advocate for open education, believing that everyone should have access to high-quality educational experiences and resources, including open textbooks.
Recognized for his expertise and extensive contributions to the field, Jhangiani was named the 2017 senior open education advocacy and research fellow for BCcampus last week.
BCcampus manages the B.C. Open Textbook Project, which makes available openly-licensed textbooks in the highest-enrolled academic subject areas. The B.C. Open Textbook Project now includes a repository of 168 peer-reviewed open textbooks that have been written or adapted by B.C. faculty. These textbooks may be adapted by faculty for their courses and are available to students free of cost in digital formats and at low cost in print format.
“Although KPU is the leading institutional adopter of open textbooks, relatively few B.C. faculty are aware that there is a free and high-quality alternative to expensive commercial textbooks,” said Jhangiani. “This is why I’m delighted to be leading a provincial research effort on open educational practices, and to assist my colleagues at other post-secondary institutions as they embrace an approach to education that is student-centred, affordable and personalized.
As the senior research fellow, Jhangiani will lead a team of three faculty researchers in the development of open education research. His work with BCcampus over the next year complements his current roles as research fellow with the Open Education Group (OEG), and as the open studies teaching fellow at KPU.
“This senior fellowship is a great honour for Dr. Jhangiani, and we’re extremely proud of his accomplishments here at KPU,” said Dr. Alan Davis, KPU president and vice-chancellor. “That he is recognized again and again as one of the leading experts in his field speaks to his commitment to removing barriers to higher education.
A high resolution photo of Rajiv Jhangiani is available for download on KPU’s Flickr page.
About Kwantlen Polytechnic University
Kwantlen Polytechnic University has served the Metro Vancouver region since 1981, and has opened doors to success for more than 200,000 learners. Four campuses—Richmond, Surrey, Cloverdale and Langley—offer a comprehensive range of sought-after programs in business, liberal arts, design, health, science and horticulture, trades and technology, and academic and career advancement. Over 19,000 students annually have a choice from over 120 programs, including bachelor’s degrees, associate degrees, diplomas, certificates, citations and apprenticeships. Learn more at kpu.ca.