Now Open: Alberta’s Provincial OER Publishing Program!

March 12, 2020

The University of Alberta Library and the Alberta OER Technology and Infrastructure Working Group are pleased to announce the new Open Education Alberta program.  This no-fee provincial program seeks to eliminate barriers to adopting, adapting and creating open textbooks by providing Alberta post-secondary institutions with easy-to-use online publishing software. The University of Alberta Library will host and maintain the Pressbooks publishing software, and partner institutions will establish workflows and service models that fit their unique community needs. Thank you to Mount Royal University, MacEwan University, University of Calgary, University of Lethbridge and the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology for their contributions to the development of this program.

Why do we need this program?

Many institutions are eager to pursue the development of Open Education initiatives on their campuses, but do not have access to the technical infrastructure or staff to host the tools and software required to adapt or create new content.  The UofA, which already manages a local OER publishing program, is well-positioned to expand its hosting to support more content, while institutions with special expertise in content and course creation, open pedagogy, scholarly communications, and project management, can contribute to the program through the development of content and supporting materials. Because the published textbooks will be openly available to anyone, the entire post-secondary community in Alberta can benefit from this collaborative program. 

What are OER?

Open Educational Resources (OER) are teaching and learning materials that allow free use and reuse, without charge. OERs often have a Creative Commons license that states specifically how the material may be used, reused, adapted, and shared. 

What is Pressbooks?

Pressbooks is a simple publishing software for the authoring and publication of multimedia-rich print books, ebooks, and webbooks. The published books are shareable in multiple formats including pdf, epub, and mobi and can easily be adapted and updated using the Pressbooks software.

For more information, see or contact

Working Group Members

Initiative Co-Leads (2019-present)
Michelle Brailey (University of Alberta) & Cari Merkley (Mount Royal University)

Institutional Representatives and Contributors:
Robyn Hall (MacEwan University)
Christie Hurrell (University of Calgary)
Jessica Norman (Southern Alberta Institute of Technology)
Erika Smith (Mount Royal University)
Joerdis Weilandt (University of Lethbridge)