For the second year in a row, the California Community Colleges, California State University, and University of California are coming together for Cal OER 2022. From August 3rd through 5th, the conference, which is open virtually to all, will focus on:

  • Ways to engage students in Open Educational Resources (OER) advocacy
  • How to involve students in OER development
  • Improving student outcomes through open authoring and open pedagogy 
  • Encouraging and fostering OER adoption and development
  • Ensuring that today’s resources remain relevant and current 
  • How to find OER that might meet your needs

The Michelson 20MM Foundation is pleased to once again sponsor this conference as we continue to support initiatives that aim to expand the reach of OER throughout the state.

2022 Keynote Speakers

The three-day conference will be centered around three keynote addresses. Kicking off the conference is Mark McBride, Associate Director of Libraries, Scholarly Communications, and Museums for Ithaka S+R, who will discuss lessons learned from SUNY OER Services. McBride is also the co-founder of the Open Education Research Lab at the University at Buffalo, as such he is an OER champion with a wealth of firsthand implementation experience. 

On Thursday, Dr. Angela Haydel DeBarger, Program Officer in Education at the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation; Dr. Rajiv Jhangiani, Vice Provost for Teaching and Learning at Brock University; Ms. Joy Shoemate, Director of Online Education at College of the Canyons; and Ms. Kyra Karatsu, Online Education Resources/Zero Textbook Cost Specialist and second-year Communication Studies major at College of the Canyons will explore the value of OER beyond the cost-savings. 

Finally, on Friday attendees will crunch the OER numbers with Dr. Julia Seaman and Dr. Jeff Seaman from Bay View Analytics. Their research through Bay View Analytics has been featured in the Chronicle of Higher Education and Inside Higher Ed; additionally, it has been mentioned in hundreds of dissertations and over 20,000 academic citations.


Open Educational Resources are teaching, learning, and research materials that reside in the public domain or have been released under an open license that permits their free use and re-purposing by others. Incorporating OER into existing curricula–or, better yet, becoming an entirely OER class and campus–significantly improves college affordability and advances equitable educational opportunities without sacrificing the quality of a student’s education. In fact, 93% of students who use OER do as well or better than those using traditional materials.

Why California

During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, more than half of California’s postsecondary students reported not buying their course materials due to the expense. The following year, however, California Governor Gavin Newsom took action and made a $115M investment in Zero-Textbook Cost Degree programs as he called on the state “to disrupt that entire system nationwide.” Backed by this historic investment, California has an opportunity to lead the nation in OER adoption and implementation. 

By bringing together California’s three educational systems and providing an opportunity to share lessons learned, Cal OER 2022 will play an integral role in ensuring OER has the greatest impact on students. 

Register for Cal OER 2022

Michelson 20MM is a private, nonprofit foundation seeking to accelerate progress towards a more just world through grantmaking, operating programs, and impact investing. Co-chaired and funded by Alya and Gary Michelson, Michelson 20MM is part of the Michelson Philanthropies network of foundations.