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Online Instruction Resources: Textbooks

One stop shop for tools and programs to benefit online instruction.

Sites Offering Free Textbook Access

  • RedShelf and VitalSource: These major textbook providers have opened up free access for students until the end of term. Refer to their websites for details and to see if your texts are available.
  • CENGAGE has created a Resource Page which will help you locate your Cengage representative to enable the following resources:

    • Free Access to CENGAGE Unlimited: Free access to their entire catalog of online learning platforms and eBooks through Cengage Unlimited, through end of term, to any student in any class at any US college that has been impacted by COVID-19.
    • Support Transition to Online: CENGAGE will complement that offering with services and resources to back up educators as they change the way they teach.
    • Free Access to eBooks through programs being offered by CENGAGE partners VitalSource and RedShelf. 
  • Wiley: Instructors without an adopted online learning solution, such as WileyPLUS, Knewton Alta, or zyBooks, can receive free access for their students for the remainder of the Spring 2020 term. Instructors teaching at impacted institutions can request access to WileyPLUS or Knewton Alta or request access to zyBooks. Instructores who are already using WileyPLUS or Knewton Alta should contact Customer Success Specialists--who are equipped to provide additional support, including extension of due dates, adjusting assignments or increasing the capacity to work remotely. Wiley is also partnering with organizations, like VitalSource, to offer free etexts to students whose classes have move online.
  • ProQuest has announced that its Ebook Central titles will have unlimited simultaneous users for over 50 of their included publishers until mid-June. Their full press release provides a list of the publishers.

Lumen Courseware

Lumen Learning is offering to assist with the rapid transition faculty are making to online learning. Their courseware is designed to help students succeed in digital environments, and their catalog includes 50+ general education subjects. They are taking the following steps to help instructors get students through this term successfully:

  • Making their courseware, Waymaker and OHM, available at no cost for courses currently in session. For faculty members seeking a well-designed digital alternative or a supplement to their current textbook, Lumen Learning courseware may be a good fit. Course set-up is simple, and faculty can be ready to teach the same day they make the change. Lumin Learning will also provide free services to support a successful transition (Learn More).
  • To support professional development, Lumen Learning offers Resources: Teaching with Lumen Courseware, and is introducing a series of short videos about effective digital teaching and learning using Lumen courseware. They will be available at the Lumen blog, What's New with Lumen. Topics include:
    • Setting up your course in the LMS
    • Engaging students in virtual environments
    • Staying connected to students at a distance
    • Helping students become self-directed learners

Lumen’s Support Team is available to assist with any needs and answer questions for faculty, instructional designers, LMS administrators, and others working with faculty as they switch modalities using Lumen courseware. Contact them at or schedule an Office Hours appointment for live virtual support.

Open Access Textbooks

Free Courseware

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