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UNG Press provides $4 million worth of free resources during COVID-19

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UNG has been a valuable resource for students, teachers and parents during COVID-19 through its continued offerings of free online textbooks plus a manuscript about effective use of powerpoint in teaching that is free to access through August.

The University of North Georgia (UNG) Press has experienced a massive influx of interest during COVID-19 in its open textbooks, which are free online versions of textbooks used by the University System of Georgia's (USG) eCore classes.

More than 55,000 downloads of the open educational resources (OERs) have been accessed since the pandemic pushed education online across the country. The online nature of these texts also allows for easy updating when new versions are available.

The UNG Press is the leading university press in the state for OERs and open textbooks through its partnership with the USG, eCore and Affordable Learning Georgia (ALG).

The monograph titled "Slides for Students: The Effective Use of Powerpoint in Education" is available as a free download until Aug. 31 on UNG Press. The monograph, which is usually $39.99, has received more than 500 downloads.

Between the textbooks and the monograph on powerpoint by Gary D. Fisk, the resources have saved students, teachers and parents more than $4 million.

"We know that times are tough right now, especially as teachers and parents have transitioned to at-home schooling," said Dr. BJ Robinson, director of UNG Press. "We made this monograph free for a few months to assist instructors adapting their teaching methods to online learning during the COVID-19 pandemic."

Robinson said Association of University Presses Executive Director Peter Berkery visited UNG in 2019 and told Robinson others would love to have the money-saving reputation UNG Press has with students.

Literature and writing textbooks have been the most popular during COVID-19, with mathematics, Accounting 1 and 2, macroeconomics, history, art and geology among the other offerings.

"Over the past few years, we’ve seen the need for open and easily available educational materials, and this need guided our publishing decisions," said Jillian Murphy, assistant managing editor for UNG Press. "We are proud that our years of hard work continuously helps students in the present day, especially during such unprecedented times."

UNG Press has published 18 open textbooks through its partnership with ALG, and 15 more are in production. These open textbooks are always available at the UNG Press website and Galileo Open Learning Materials and recently have been promoted via USG Learning Everywhere.

UNG Press has a partnership that allows it to offer print-on-demand service for its open textbooks, with prices for those capping out at $29.99 and still saving users more than half the cost.

Corey Parson, managing editor of UNG Press, does the layout work and has designed the textbooks to be accessible for all devices in the new Manifold format being developed by ALG.

UNG follows Section 508 Standards and WCAG 2.0 for web accessibility. If you require the content on this web page in another format, please contact the ADA Coordinator.

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