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VIVA: VIVA Open Adopt Grants

Virginia's Academic Library Consortium

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VIVA Open Adopt Grants

VIVA Open Adopt Grants provide awards of $2,000 to individual instructors to support the time it takes to integrate existing open or no-cost materials into a syllabus, and to ensure that the results of those efforts are widely available to Virginia educators.

Instructors interested in applying for this opportunity are encouraged to explore VIVA's repository of Open Education Resources, VIVA Open, to discover open resources that may be of use in their courses. Applicants do not need to choose a resource listed in VIVA Open to apply for the grant.

Team and departmental adoptions, as well as projects seeking to adapt or create new Open Educational Resources, should apply for the larger scale VIVA Open Course Grants.

Important Dates

The current round of VIVA Open Adopt Grants was announced on July 20, 2021. Applications are due October 4, 2021 via email at Notification of award recipients will take place by November 12, 2021. Adopted course materials must be piloted in the classroom by spring, 2023.

Informational webinars are scheduled for the following dates. Advance registration at the provided link is required:

July 28, 2021, 10:00 am:

August 31, 2021, 1:00 pm:

September 8, 2021, 2:00 pm:

September 21, 2021, 9:30 am:

Questions about all VIVA Open grants can be sent to

Grant Purpose

The VIVA Open Grants Program reduces the costs of higher education for Virginia students by eliminating the costs of textbooks and other course materials. These costs can be a significant barrier to student success, shaping everything from what majors are chosen to whether or not degrees are completed. The high cost of textbooks, technology and course materials, currently estimated by The College Board to be around $1,300 per student per year, means that students often do not purchase course materials, and academic performance suffers as a result. Barriers to curricular resources have been further exacerbated by COVID-19.

Although the need is clear, faculty who wish to design courses using open or no-cost materials have few resources available to them. The purpose of the Open Adopt Grant program is address this challenge by providing support for the time it takes to integrate existing open or no-cost materials into a course.

Grants are intended to:

  • Support faculty as they create or update a syllabus that relies on no-cost course materials.
  • Lower the cost of higher education for Virginia students and contribute to their retention and success.
  • Preserve academic freedom and provide both incentives and support to this critical work.
  • Make available syllabi and ancillary materials that rely on open materials to faculty across Virginia.

Grant Guidelines

Full or part-time faculty may apply for a grant to support the adoption of OER, including textbooks, software, test banks and ancillary materials, and library resources that replace a traditional textbook or other costly class resources. Applications must be from an individual course instructor only. Each grant recipient will receive a $2,000 award intended to support their time as they transition to open and affordable course materials, including the time required to gather assessment data and provide VIVA with any ancillary materials developed as complementary to the selected course content. Successful applications will receive 75% of the funding at the outset of the project and the remaining 25% upon completion of a final report.

Applications will be reviewed by members of VIVA’s Open and Affordable Course Content Committee and VIVA administrators.  Grants will be awarded based on:

  • Potential for student savings, including class enrollment and cost of existing course materials.
  • The use of OER (freely available and free to be modified).
  • Assessment data and ancillary materials made widely available to other education professionals.
  • Frequency of course offering, with a preference for high-enrollment, required courses.
  • Impact on educational equity and outcomes in traditionally underserved communities.
  • Commitment to continue offering the no cost course materials to students for future semesters/years.
  • Agreement to the terms of the grant and required activities.

Each awarded grant will receive support from VIVA in adopting existing OER, including access to Pressbooks, ISKME’s Open Author Tool, and copyright consultations. Recipients will have the option (but not the requirement) to meet with the VIVA grant coordinator and participate in the annual VIVA grant recipient kickoff meeting. Grant recipients will be expected to complete the following activities:

  • Institutional sign-off on a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) provided by the VIVA Central Office, using the project proposal as a statement of work.
  • Completion of a final project report, including provision of data on impact on student success and a course syllabus with resource links. The report must include overall changes in Drop/Fail/Withdraw (DFW) rates and student performance (examples: grades, standardized tests, other learning outcomes assessments), if available.
  • Ancillary materials must be created under a Creative Commons license and will be made accessible through the VIVA Open shared repository platformExceptions for other, more restrictive open licenses, including for test bank questions and homework materials, will be made on discussion with VIVA. Ancillary materials developed in authoring platforms that have proprietary features that are unable to be accommodated in the VIVA shared repository should include plans for how that content can be shared.
  • Syllabi for associated courses must be provided to the VIVA Open Syllabus Bank and openly licensed for access and use by other educators.
  • All intellectual property rights for content created remain fully with the creator, but VIVA requires permission to host the content in perpetuity.
  • Participation in VIVA-related communications, including post-project surveys.