1.3: Project Summary Template

This template may be used as you’re starting to define your project. Find an editable version here.

Project Summary: [Project Title]

Lead editor/author(s): [Name]


A brief summary of your OER. Explain how the project came about and its importance. What do you hope this resource will achieve?


Identify the primary motivators that drive this project.

Course and Audience

What courses will this OER be used in? Identify both the primary student audience (academic level, discipline etc.) and any secondary audiences (instructors, researchers, professionals, other interested parties).

Significant Learning Outcomes

  • Articulating the overarching learning goals will guide you in the process of locating useful resources and/or creating your own.
  • If the OER is assigned to be used in a particular course, list and revise the course outcomes.
  • What do you want students to learn that will still be with them several years later? 
  • Think expansively, beyond “understand and remember” kinds of learning. Use this as an opportunity to build your dream course.

Course Materials Needed

Think about the teaching environments in which your OER will be used. Identify what materials you will need in addition to a core textbook or ancillary materials. You may want to list and link to items like a syllabus, assessments, lesson plans, teaching aids, etc. List these out below.


  1. If you are creating a textbook, how will the textbook be structured? (e.g. 3 parts to every chapter, student-facing text plus instructor handbook etc.).
  2. Will you be drawing on existing OER? In what ways?
  3. What (if any) accompanying elements (e.g. instructor resources, presentations, quizzes, maps, data sets) will be produced or collected? If you are creating these ancillary materials, how would these be structured?
  4. What voices and representations will you want to use to help convey specific information in your OER?


Explain what license the OER will carry and why. You may want to link to external resources where readers can go for more information on the CC BY license, such as the Creative Commons website, or the Rebus Community Licensing Policy.

Anticipated Timeline

Provide an approximate timeline for the project. This doesn’t have to be comprehensive, or rigid, but an indicator of dates for major milestones (e.g. chapters submitted, editing complete, peer review complete, layout, accessibility review, initial release, classroom review, etc.).

Measures of Success

  • How will you know if you’ve met your goal?
  • What constitutes success, and how will you measure it?
  • Consider indicators along the production process like number of participants, diversity of perspectives (geographic, cultural, social, etc.), feedback opportunities, number of adoptions etc.
  • Also think about student success beyond traditional metrics of grades and focus on deeper learning measures. Do students feel joyful and empowered in the course?
  • These don’t have to be comprehensive, but help to clarify what success means to your project, beyond just writing a text

Find an editable version of this template here.


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The Rebus Guide to Publishing Open Textbooks (So Far) Copyright © 2019 by Apurva Ashok; Zoe Wake Hyde; and Kaitlin Schilling is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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