Z Initiative


The WCET Z Initiative connects institution-level OER champions, legislators, state systems of higher education, educational technologists, and national OER leaders. The Z Initiative is focused on research, practices and policies promoting the adoption, implementation, scalability, and sustainability of open educational resources, Z Courses, and Z Degrees.


  • Affordability of higher education is a growing issue for students and policy makers are finally taking notice. Textbook costs have emerged as a major contributing factor.
  • The College Board estimates the cost of books and supplies to be $1,250 at four-year public institutions and $1,390 at two-year public institutions.
  • Textbook retail prices have risen 88% over the last decade – faster than tuition and fees.
  • Recent studies have found this has a negative impact on students. Two out of every three students report that they skip buying some of their required materials because of costs.

The Solution

Working collaboratively, institutions, systems, and states can implement change more efficiently than working on their own. The WCET Z Initiative will increase cooperation, reduce duplication of effort, and scale the implementations more quickly than would happen with each entity working in isolation. Through access to experts and by joining the network of others seeking to implement OER Courses and Z Degrees, the WCET Z Squad provides:

Types of Events:

  • Research Reports, Resources, and News
  • Email lists-Discussion Opportunities
  • Implementation Advice
  • Discussions with OER champions
  • Face-to-Face meetings
  • Training Webcasts
  • Monthly calls for the membership coordinators
  • Consulting services

Join the Z Squad Email List for Free...

Just email Sherri Artz Gilbert and ask to be added.

How to Join?

Tanya Spilovoy at the WCET Z Initiative will be happy to answer any questions.