Streamlining Access to Course Material

Brock’s new Academic Plan is centered on five key priorities, including a teaching and learning environment that is “Accessible, Flexible, and Customizable” (Priority #2).  One of the actions nested under this priority is to “Streamline the processes by which students access learning materials and maximize the use of library resources for course support”. 

We know from research that access to learning materials such as textbooks, readings, open educational resources, and other learning materials is a key factor in equity and academic outcomes.  Conversely barriers to course materials have a significant negative impact on student success.   

We also know that instructors play a pivotal role in helping students access and use course readings.  On March 2nd, the Library, the Campus Store, and CPI hosted an event for faculty highlighting various options available to instructors to help facilitate access for students.  The goal was to promote resources and services available to faculty through the Brock Library, Campus Store, and CPI, and to kickstart a discussion about how to better streamline the course materials landscape at Brock. 

Library support for Course Material 

One of the ways that the library supports affordable and accessible course materials is through the Course Readings service. Instructors can share their course syllabus with the Library’s Course Readings team, who will then locate the material and load it into an online platform which connects directly to the course within Brightspace.

We can add digital material from: the library collection, the web (including open educational resources), audio/visual sources, and materials we source from partner institutions. Additionally, we ensure the resources we put in the platform are accessible and copyright compliant.  

While online/electronic material offer the greatest flexibility for students, we are also able to put print material (including instructor copies) on short term loan at the Ask Us desk in James A. Gibson Library. 

The Library currently supports over 300 courses across the University. Learn more about the Library’s Course Readings service.

If an instructor is considering moving away from the traditional textbook model and into adopting an open textbook or other open educational resources (OER), the library can help with that, too. Learn more about Library support for OER.

Campus Store support for Course Material 

Did you know any profits earned through the Campus Store are invested right back into faculties, programs, and courses at Brock?  

The Campus Store’s Course Materials team actively connects with instructors to ensure course materials are available for students when courses start. The team is currently finalizing adoptions for the Spring/Summer and working hard for the Fall/Winter terms so students can start the semester with material in hand.  

Through the My Course Materials platform, students receive a personalized shopping list of course materials available through the Campus Store for the courses they have registered in. Over 25,000 students viewed the Campus Store’s My Course Materials this past fall and winter terms – you’ll find a link to it in the Brightspace menu. 

With course materials continually evolving and affordability at forefront, the Course Materials team is a knowledgeable resource for multi-format sourcing and price matching with leading competitors. 

Missed the email from the Campus Store Materials Team? Please contact us at 

What’s Next 

The Library, Campus Store and CPI are committed to finding ways to streamline access to course materials and finding new ways to make course materials more affordable and accessible to all students.

This past year, the Library and Campus Store have worked together on a pilot project to make printed course packs more affordable by leveraging library-acquired materials when possible, and we will continue to build on this collaboration. All three partners have been working to ensure access to all resources can happen through Brightspace.

Future initiatives are likely to include making open educational resources easier to adopt for instructors and easier to use for students. We welcome your feedback, ideas, and suggestions on how we can make your experience and access to course materials even better.

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