A competitive instructional materials marketplace is necessary to ensure schools and students always have access to the highest-quality learning materials based on their needs at reasonable costs. Both commercially develop and open education resources have roles in the marketplace and neither can be allowed to skirt basic quality checks to ensure all students will be served well served by the decision to acquire a particular material.
Ultimately, instructional material selection is a local level decision for school districts, institutions of higher education and educators to select or develop the materials that best fit their programs and courses – whether they are OER or commercially-developed, digital or print. The Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA) and the Association of American Publishers (AAP) have developed these guides and checklists for educators and administrators in K-12 and higher education to identify best practices in the decision-making process, including identifying high-quality components all materials should be expected to address.
When determining instructional materials to adopt, it is vital that schools and educators consider the wide range of core and value-added elements in any material being introduced into the classroom to find the best match for their needs. While price is a factor, it is not the only factor in the value and quality of an instructional material.
Policymakers as well will find these materials informative to better understand the instructional materials market and the components of high-quality materials.