In many parts of the world, access to affordable, relevant and peer-reviewed academic textbooks remains a pipe dream for all but the largest, best-funded universities. The International Association for Digital Publications (IADP) exists to challenge this state of affairs and Indigo is delighted, therefore, to announce a grant of £10,000 towards their Affordable Access Programme. The grant will be used to enable IADP and its partner universities to identify collections of relevant and affordable eBook titles in support of the Open University’s TESSA (Teacher Education in Sub-Saharan Africa) and HEAT (Health Education and Training) projects.
The IADP is a British charity that works with publishers and centers of education to create awareness of relevant, high quality educational resources, and it provides access to downloadable eBooks across all subject areas at discounts of 45-85%. The IADP operates in Southern Africa in association with OER Africa, and it is now extending its operations into other regions. The IADP programme is built around four key pillars:
- Raising awareness among academic staff of relevant, high quality educational resources;
- Securing major discounts from publishers that can be differentiated at the institutional level;
- Providing downloadable resources to overcome lack of internet access and/or inadequate bandwidth; and
- Integrating eBooks and OER (Open Educational Resources) into curriculum design and pedagogy.
In brief, IADP works with its partner universities to identify the content most relevant for their students and provides tailored content depending on the needs of students. By working with several major academic publishers, IADP is able to provide heavily subsidised materials for a wide range of academic disciplines. In addition, through collaborating with less well endowed colleges and universities, IADP is attempting to build Communities of Practice (CoPs) so that resources can more easily be peer reviewed, and OER can be developed, adapted, and shared. IADP is now preparing to upload over 50,000 eBooks and make them available to students in selected developing countries. We wish them every success with this important programme.