OhioLINK awarded Governor’s Emergency Education Relief (GEER) funds to bridge COVID-created gaps in higher education instructional materials and library resources

Dec 21, 2020

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- OhioLINK, Ohio’s academic library consortium, has received $2.5 million from the Ohio Governor’s Emergency Education Relief (GEER) funds through the Ohio Department of Higher Education. The funds will be used to purchase digital resources for Ohio colleges, such as streaming video and e-books, to supplement online research, as well as provide instructional support for a wide range of curriculum, including physical and applied science courses that traditionally have not been taught online. GEER is part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act, which authorized federal economic aid in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The CARES Act includes several funding streams, such as GEER, to support the education community's response to the public health emergency.

“The pandemic has put tremendous stress on institutions of higher education, their faculty, and students in the pivot to online instruction, and we’re thankful to the Governor Mike DeWine’s office for providing assistance through GEER funds,” said Ohio Chancellor Randy Gardner. “OhioLINK’s capability to identify, negotiate, and manage the distribution of these resources across the state will help us address some of these challenges, as well as ensure that the Ohio Department of Higher Education is delivering broad, positive impact for teaching and education.”

OhioLINK Executive Director Amy Pawlowski added, “We’re so pleased to have Governor DeWine’s office recognize OhioLINK’s value within Ohio’s higher education community, and the positive effect this investment in library resources will have on librarians, faculty, and students.”

OhioLINK member institution librarians have been invaluable in helping their faculty navigate the existing e-resources available to support online/hybrid courses and research. However, the immediate nature of the pandemic response created a gap in research and instructional materials for courses that traditionally have not been taught online. In addition, libraries did not have adequate materials in the digital formats needed for online instruction, such as streaming video and e-books. And with pandemic-related budget challenges, purchasing newly needed materials was not an option.

Leveraging its aggregated purchasing power, OhioLINK negotiated deals for five collections to address a broad range of curriculum, with two collections focusing on the most pressing resource needs in STEM subjects and the allied health fields. The new content packages include:

Resource

Supports

JoVE Core Science Videos + Lab Manuals

Sciences, medical, and allied health curriculum

InfoBase Films on Demand (curated collection)

Broad curriculum (e.g., sciences, humanities, history, arts, political science, sociology, technology)

Wiley Cochrane Library

Medical and allied health curriculum

MIT Press Direct (collection through 2021)

Broad curriculum (e.g., sciences, humanities, business, economics, mathematics, technology, sociology)

Sage Business Cases (collection through 2020)

Business curriculum (e.g., entrepreneurship, human resource management, international business, marketing, operations management)

 Available for use starting in spring semester, these resources will support instruction for online/hybrid courses for Ohio’s 2-year, undergraduate, and graduate-level students across a wide range of disciplines. They will integrate with Ohio institutions’ Learning Management Systems (LMS) via Learning Tools Interoperability (LTI) apps making it easy for instructors to use these resources.

For more than 27 years, OhioLINK has been reducing the cost of higher education through shared resources. OhioLINK users interact with its resources every 1.1 seconds. As COVID-19 forced remote education, its 88 member institutions relied on access to OhioLINK’s electronic scholarly resources, as well as access to affordable learning strategies such as inclusive access textbooks, Open Educational Resources (OER), and eTutoring services. For more information on OhioLINK’s pandemic response, see the article on page 4 of the 2020 Summit Magazine.

 

About OhioLINK: Connecting libraries, learning and discovery.

Established in 1992, the Ohio Library and Information Network (OhioLINK) is Ohio’s statewide academic library consortium, serving 88 institutions plus the State Library of Ohio. Delivering both IT infrastructure and content negotiation, OhioLINK provides students, researchers, faculty, and staff with access to valuable digital research collections at a fraction of the cost if those collections were purchased by individual institutions. OhioLINK also connects library services, print and digital collections among its member institutions and manages collaborative services aimed at reducing students’ cost of higher education in Ohio, including eTutoring and Affordable Learning. A member of the Ohio Technology Consortium of the Ohio Department of Higher Education, OhioLINK creates a competitive advantage for its member institutions and supports student and researcher success across Ohio. Learn more at ohiolink.edu.