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Elizabeth Spica

Elizabeth Spica

PhD Candidate, Higher Education Administration


Elizabeth Spica is a PhD candidate researching textbook and course material solutions to improve college affordability. At UT, she serves as Graduate Research Assistant in UT Libraries Scholarly Communication and Publishing office, which focuses on aspects of copyright, Open Access and research publishing, public access policy, Open Educational Resources (OER), and research impact metrics. 

Prior to returning for her PhD, Elizabeth held roles in marketing and curriculum design for higher education publishing and EdTech companies. Before her transition to the private sector, she worked in student success administration and taught languages (English, German).

Hobbies and Interests: Growing hot peppers, watching and learning about birds, sailing, Virtual Reality 


Community college affordability, Open Educational Resources (OER), copyright and Open Access publishing. Spica is also an OER Research Fellow through the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation-sponsored Open Education Group, which supports research on the impact of Open Educational Resources. 


  • MS, English as a Second Language Teacher Education, The University of Tennessee
  • MA, German, The University of Tennessee
  • BA, German, The University of Tennessee

Professional Service

In addition to her role with UT Libraries, Spica also teaches for the Undergraduate Leadership Studies program and serves on the steering committee of THEC's Tennessee Textbook Affordability Task Force. She also volunteers as a tnAchieves mentor to help and encourage high school seniors make the transition to college. 

Elizabeth Spica

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