While the cost of learning materials for college courses can pose a financial challenge to many students, faculty members at Lander University are doing their part to keep classes affordable for the students they teach. South Carolina Affordable Learning, also known as “SCALE,” is an initiative of the Partnership Among South Carolina Academic Libraries that annually recognizes Professors of Affordable Learning (PAL). Six members of the Lander faculty were recently given this distinction.
To be eligible for the award, professors submit syllabi for recent courses they’ve taught that utilize open education resources, materials available at Lander’s Jackson Library, resources accessible for free on the internet or low-cost materials not exceeding $50 total per student. According to Director of Library Services Lisa Wiecki, the librarians at Jackson Library are eager to help professors find affordable materials for use in their courses.
“Studying at a university is a special time in one’s life, like no other,” Wiecki said. “It is a profound time of personal growth for students as they prepare for their future lives and careers. I’ve seen students place huge expectations upon themselves and their performance in the classroom and because of that wrestle with anxiety and stress. Attending a class that is zero cost, or low cost, is just the thing many students need to release some pressure so they can successfully complete the course.”
This year’s PAL recipients are:
Wiecki presented this year’s PAL recipients with their awards during the final faculty meeting of the 2022-23 academic year.
“These faculty members understand that the learning is going to sink in better when students can focus on the materials, which they need to study,” said Wiecki, “not on how they will pay for those course materials. In my opinion their empathetic approach to student success makes them true campus heroes and we should celebrate them for this.”