Dr. Anu Sivaraman is the Assistant Professor of Marketing and Faculty Director of Assessment in the Alfred Lerner College of Business.
Dr. Sivaraman holds a bachelor’s and master’s degree in statistics from Madras Christian College, India. She received her Ph.D. in business administration from the University of Houston in 2004. Dr. Sivaraman’s research focuses on how counterfactual thinking can be used for understanding and instigating changes in consumption patterns. Her other areas of research include behavioral decision theory, and she has won numerous awards for her teaching and contributions to her field.
Currently, she teaches Introduction to Marketing, as well as Marketing Strategy.
Dr. Sivaraman’s contributions to open education stemmed from a concern that her student’s textbooks were too expensive. At the time of inception, she had about 600 students in her course, 200 in-person, and the cheapest option for the class textbook was over $60. “The textbooks weren’t helping,” she said.
Recognizing the prohibitive cost as a barrier, Dr. Sivaraman embedded her own materials, readings, videos and other resources as part of her core modules. “The idea is to keep the chapters current but generic, so other people can use them,” she said. She enlisted the help of an assistant to bring her vision to life, who she credits with the final result: a colorful, easy-to-navigate textbook with pictures, videos, and other relevant multimedia that is available to all students enrolled in the courses. It’s also user-friendly for the instructor, as well; Dr. Sivaraman is able to “rearrange sections [of the textbooks] to tell the story…the class needs.”
In her search for free materials for her class to use, Dr. Sivaraman found two marketing textbooks, neither of which was perfect for her needs. She took the best of both, effectively creating a custom-made product, as well as modules that are vivid, engaging, and share the best of the information she’s discovered.
Based on the success of her textbooks, Dr. Sivaraman strongly encourages faculty to engage with open education resources, stressing not only the usefulness to students, but to instructors. The result has been a resource flexible enough to adapt readily to student needs, and easy for any instructor to tailor-make to a course.
For more information on sourcing and using Open Source materials, please contact the library!