Publishing an Open Textbook

Whether you want to convert a traditional reader or textbook into an Open Textbook, or write an Open Textbook from scratch, the TU Delft Library can facilitate the publication process and put all facilities required at each stage of the publication process at your disposal. The publication process is broadly divided in five steps, that are described below in "How to Publish".  Are you interested in publishing a TU Delft Open Textbook? Contact either for assistance with a personal publishing project, or to enrol in our workshop “Open Textbook in a Day”.


Step 1: Copyright check

Your Open Textbook could consist of materials that you have produced yourself completely. However, in many cases materials produced by colleagues, previous teachers or an unknown party are needed to produce a high-quality Open Textbook. To ensure that you can all  of the materials that you want to use in your Open Textbook, we have established the Copyright Office. The Copyright Office can assist you with any of the following issues:

  • Negotiating with copyright holders in order to secure the right to use any copyright-protected materials.
  • Finding copyright-free alternatives to any copyright-protected materials that you are using in your Open Textbook.
  • Performing plagiarism checks.
  • Licensing your Open Textbook with an open copyright licence, known as a Creative Commons license.

For more information on copyright, Creative Commons and the Copyright Office, please visit the TU Delft Library copyright website


Step 2: Choosing a writing platform

TU Delft Open Books uses Pressbooks as a writing platform for Open Textbooks. This writing platform offers the options of writing in LaTeX, or HTML. A TU Delft style template is available to help you meet TU Delft Open Textbook standards.

At this stage of the publishing process, our editors will introduce the writing platform with all its functionalities. You will then be able to start converting your educational materials into an Open Textbook! Initially, just one writer and one of our editors will have editing access to the Open Textbook. However, as the writer you can invite others to view or edit your Open Textbook as well, so you can collaborate on the textbook with a colleague or a student assistant. 

If you prefer not to use HTML or LaTeX, alternative writing platforms are available. However, our editors may not be familiar with these platforms and it will take time to develop a TU Delft style template for such platforms.


Step 3: Preparing for publication

As soon as you have uploaded your content to Pressbooks©, our editors will prepare the resulting document for publication as PDF, as E-pub and as a paperback. They will review the layout of the Open Textbook, but not the content. The writer will be responsible for ensuring the quality of the content through a peer-review process.

The Open Textbook is completed with a cover that you can design yourself, using our TU Delft Open Books cover template, with assistance from our editors if required.


Step 4: Publication

When your Open Textbook is finalized, it will be published as a pdf-file. This publication will have a CC-BY-NC license, an open license in accordance to the TU Delft Open guideline, which allows your textbook to be reused, retained, revised, remixed and/or redistributed. Please visit the TU Delft Library copyright website for more information on open licenses.

In order to publish your Open Textbook on our platform, you will have to fill in a submission form. The form will allow you to add details such as your affiliation, a synopsis, keywords, and categories to the Open Textbook. This will make your Open Textbook easier to identify and find for your students and other interested parties.

We will provide the Open Textbook with an ISBN and a DOI, and a link to the pdf-file will be included in our catalogue. The Open Textbook entry will also contain a link to CB, a book distribution company tasked with providing the print-on-demand service for paperback copies of your Open Textbook. This allows readers who prefer to do so, to purchase a paperback copy of your Open Textbook at a competitive price.

The Pressbooks writing platform allows publication of other Open Textbook formats as well. Our editor-in-chief can assist you with a publication strategy, including the possibility of a financial reward structure, if you require your Open Textbook to be published in other formats as well.


Step 5: After publication; what’s next?

After the book is published, we strongly encourage you to revise the content periodically. A revised edition of an Open Textbook will receive a new ISBN if it meets a minimal required amount of revisions. You will retain editing rights of your Open Textbook on the writing platform indefinitely. You are free to make revisions at any time, however, we advise to finalize revisions before the start of a course that uses the Open Textbook.

We will monitor the use of your Open Textbook by identifying readers when they download the pdf-file. Our web editor will provide you with a periodic overview of the usage of your Open Textbook.


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