HCC receives Innovation of the Year Award for Zero Textbook Degree
Jun 11, 2019
Houston Community College (HCC) received the Innovation of the Year Award for its Zero Textbook Degree (Z-Degree). Chancellor Cesar Maldonado said the 2019 honor from the League for Innovation in the Community College is given annually to outstanding programs, policies and leadership within its member institutions.
“The Z-Degree program is managed by an entire group of hardworking and forward-thinking HCC faculty who are all deserving of the accolades currently bestowed on them,” said Dr. Maldonado, who announced the award during last Wednesday’s board meeting.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics has said that college textbook prices have increased 88 percent since 2006, with a typical textbook possibly costing some HCC students more than their tuition.
The first Z-Degree program was launched at HCC in 2017. Since then, the program has grown from 28 to 98 sections and currently offers a Z-Degree core curriculum option at five campuses, including online. HCC’s goal is to offer it at the 10 largest campuses at HCC by 2021.
Though Zero Textbook and Open Educational Resources (OER) degree plans have been implemented at other colleges and universities in the US, most programs have emphasized the types of material used, while HCC has focused on the cost savings. Given all of its combined efforts, HCC estimates a cost savings of over $4.5 million, in total. That’s up to $1.5 million in savings for students each year.
As a result of these achievements and others, Drs. Stephen Levey, Nathan Smith, and Amy Tan were recently interviewed on the "Open Education Rising" blog, and HCC was awarded the "Recognition of Excellence" from the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (THECB).
“These honors demonstrate that HCC is an innovative leader among community colleges,” said Dr. Maldonado. “They and our entire faculty, staff, and administrators are dedicated to building even greater student success at Houston Community College.”
Program Chair, Computer Programming
Program Chair, English
Program Chair, Geography/Anthropology
Program Chair, Government
Program Chair, World Languages
Program Chair, Speech/Comm./Sign Lng.
Program Chair, Chemistry,
Program Chair, History
Program Chair, Philosophy
Program Chair, Psychology
Program Chair, Education
Program Chair, Studio Art & Art History
Program Chair, Natural Sciences
Program Chair, Accounting
Program Chair, Sociology
Program Chair, Business Management
Program Chair, Economics
Program Chair, Mathematics,
Program Chair, Music
Dr. Stephen Levey
AVC, Academic Affairs
Dr. Nathan Smith
PHL-OER Coord./Spec. Assignment
Dr. Amy Tan
Dean, English & Communication
Dr. Aaron Knight
Dean, Social & Behavioral Science