Open Textbooks

Many universities and other institutions have created initiatives to create textbooks that are free to use and open to all who want to learn. Open textbooks allow professors or other professionals to use and adapt textbooks based on their needs or the needs of their students. The Open Textbook landscape is a rapidly changing one, so these links will be updated regularly. If you find resources that should be here please let Library know​.

Using an open textbook for your class

  1. Find the right textbook.
  2. Review and evaluate to see if it matches your criteria and based on content, presentation, online accessibility, production options, platform compatibility, delivery options, interactivity, consistency between online and printed versions, and available ancillary material (test banks, PowerPoints, etc.). Many of the texts have been reviewed and some included support material.
  3. Decide if you want to use as is or modify it. One of the benefits of open textbooks is the flexibility to modify and customize them for specific course designs as much or as little as you desire. If you want to make edits or append content, make sure the Creative Commons license allows for that (every CC license except the non-derivative license allows for modifications). If you are interested in modifying an open textbook, BC Campus provides some information about how to modify an open textbook.  The Robertson Library has installed Pressbooks and can help faculty with migrating a text so that they can modify and adapt it.
  4. Distribute to your students. There are a number of ways in which you can do this.
    • If you’re using an open textbook, provide the link to the textbook to your students. They will have the option to select which file type they would like to download, or they can purchase a low cost printed version. The Robertson Library has an Espresso Book Machine and we work with the bookstore to supply texts using a "print on demand" approach.  Keep in mind that textbooks that have a specific non-commercial clause (CC-BY-NC) cannot be sold with markup or at a profit. However, charging a modest cost-recovery fee for physical textbooks is considered reasonable.
    • Alternatively, you can download copies of the book and put them on another site. Some examples of where you could put your own copies of the book files are:
      • You can load the book files into your Moodle course and make them available for download.
      • Use your Google Docs to store digital versions of the file and provide links to your students.
  5. Let us know. If you adopt an open textbook, tell us about it. Faculty adoption information is important to us and we would like support you. (Adapted from BCcampus CC-BY.)

BCcampus OpenEd

A project which was created in British Columbia to advance learning. Part of BCcampus OpenEd is the Open Textbooks program. Currently, the project has created textbooks in 40 different subject areas.  All of the textbooks are licensed under a creative commons license and can be used freely by anyone. 

Directory of Open Access Books

A directory of open texts organized by discipline.


A rich collection of open books in science and technology, mostly for more advanced areas of study.

Knowledge Unlatched

Includes open access scholarly books that are not traditional textbooks but may be useful as such. The site currently contains over 300 books that users can access using OAPEN Library. All of the books available on the website are licensed under a creative commons license.


One of the original repositories of learning resources.

Open Textbook Network

One of the better and more comprehensive lists of open texts.


Created at Rice University with the goal of providing users with educational material that is free to use. Authors are encouraged to create and share their work and to adapt the work of others. OpenStax provides a series of textbooks on a wide range of subjects.

Saylor Academy

A website that provides access to over 100 textbooks. The textbooks are available to download in three different file formats, and topics encompass a wide range of subjects. encourages users to share and improve the textbooks they provide.

Writing Commons

Writing Commons was created at the University of Southern Florida with the intent to create a resource that provides users with a series of online textbooks on a wide variety of subjects.

Karen Keiller's Listly Collection - A collaborative list of resources for open texts.

Open Textbooks - A guide from the Council of Atlantic University Libraries (CAUL) 

See "The Price Is Still Right: 15 Sites for Free Digital Textbooks" article by Dian Schaffhauser in the April 2016 issue of Campus Technology.

Known Open Textbooks Adoptions at UPEI 



Open Textbook

Anthropology 1050


Perspectives: An Open Invitation to Cultural Anthropology

Biology 1210/1220/1230

Prof. Kevin Teather    

OpenStax - Anatomy and Physiology

Biology 3660

Prof. Christian Lacroix    

OpenStax - Anatomy and Physiology

Chemistry 1110/1120/3310

Prof. Jason Pearson

OpenStax - Chemistry

English 2550/3910 


Internet Shakespeare Editions

French 1010/1020


Open Textbook Library - Liberté

History 1010/1020 


BCCampus - Canadian History: Pre-Confederation

BCCampus - Canadian History: Post-Confederation

Math 3510

Prof. Gordon MacDonald

Introduction to Real Analysis

Psychology 1010A 

Prof. Philip Smith

Introductory Modules from OpenStax

Noba Project Textbook

Psychology 1010B 

Prof. Stacey MacKinnon

Noba Project Textbook

Psychology 1010C

Prof. Cheryl Wartman

Noba Project Textbook 

Psychology 2420 

Prof. Stacey MacKinnon

Introduction to Psychology: The Full Noba Collection

BCCampus - Principles of Social Psychology – 1st International Edition

Psychology 2510

Prof. Philip Smith

Noba - Introduction to Psychology I

Noba - Introduction to Psychology II

Research Methods in Psychology, 2nd Canadian Edition

UPEI 1020

Prof. Brittany Jakubiec

Open Textbook Network - College Success 

Veterinary Medicine  8020


A First Course in Design and Analysis of Experiments

Not specified