Open Educational Resources

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From Cohen’s proposal:

In 2006 faculty of the Conservatory of Music wrote and published their own textbook for Core Curriculum 1.3 (CC 1.3), Music: Its Language, History, and Culture. Published by Kendall-Hunt, the reader was bundled with a subscription to the Rhapsody music streaming service. The reader and music service were to give a skeletal structure for all instructors of CC 1.3 for the development of course content focusing on the individual musical strengths and interests of each instructor. We also wanted to keep the costs to students as low as possible by not taking any royalties. The result was a book and music service priced in the $60 range when a brief edition of a standard music appreciation text with CDs was priced around $140.

In 2014 our contract with Kendall-Hunt was fulfilled and in the spirit of our original concept we decided to make the reader, now used for Music 1300, available as a free PDF book under Creative Commons share and share alike licensing. This, along with the use of free (advertising supported) streaming music services, like Spotify, allows us to offer primary course materials to our students in Music 1300 at no cost to them.”

The flat textbook can be downloaded above and the multimedia and expanded textbook is available at The guide also provides a platform for additional content (audio, video and other materials) related to, but not a part of the book, and a place where visitors can contribute their own content or comments. The XML for the guide is available as an associated file below.


This open educational resource was created as part of The Brooklyn College Open Educational Resource Pilot Project, 2014-2015. This project was designed to encourage faculty experimentation and innovation using open and/or library licensed resources for their course materials. The project supported faculty writing their own content, curating openly available scholarly digital content, and library assistance with resource identification, online publishing, creative commons licensing and copyright compliance. This alternative to print textbooks addresses multiple learning styles and pedagogies through customizable, interactive, multimedia content and may result in greater student learning and lowering student costs. Approximately 5000 Brooklyn College will be served yearly by the completed projects. Moreover, the resources are accessible to a global audience.

The Pilot Project was coordinated by Professor Miriam Deutch, Library, and overseen by Terrence Cheng, Associate Provost for Academic Programs, Brooklyn College.

Special thanks to Karen L. Gould, President, Brooklyn College for funding the pilot project.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

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Music Commons



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