Digital Learning

ASU Adopts Cloud Service to Make Low-Cost Course Materials Available to Students

Arizona State University has signed a three-year agreement with ProQuest SIPX, which will supply a self-service, cloud-based interface that allows instructors to set up course readings using all available library and open source materials. Students will have access to most materials at little or no charge, saving them and ASU as much as $3.67 million, and most copyright compliance issues for library officials will be resolved through an automated process.

"By expanding access to our library, we are providing the tools needed regardless of our students' physical location," said ASU Chief Academic Technology Officer Adrian Sannier.

The ProQuest SIPX service, called SIPX Central, came on the market only weeks before the university made the decision to adopt it. SIPX began at Stanford University in 2011 as the Stanford Intellectual Property Exchange, a project to prevent students from paying for course materials the institution already subscribed to, and was acquired by ProQuest in April.

Key features of SIPX Central include:

  • Access to course-relevant content that is available to students at no charge, including open access and library subscriptions;
  • Tools for sharing non-subscribed copyrighted material compliantly;
  • Analytics to monitor student engagement with reading assignments;
  • Support for integration with ASU's Blackboard learning management system and teaching platforms; and
  • Cost savings on course materials to students that the company says amount to 25 to 30 percent.

"ASU and ProQuest SIPX share similar goals of improving education and making it more attainable for all," said ProQuest SIPX General Manager Franny Lee.

Other higher education institutions that have signed on with ProQuest SIPX recently include Purdue University, University of Massachusetts Amherst and Claremont Lincoln University.

About the Author

Michael Hart is a Los Angeles-based freelance writer and the former executive editor of THE Journal.

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