The high costs of textbooks have put a big financial burden for many college students, and may become a roadblock for students’ ability to complete their education. In addition, many textbooks are outdated at the publication date, given the dynamic nature of the technology field. In this study, our team of investigators took a collaborative effort to select, organize, and integrate publicly accessible information, and transform those resources into instructionally rigorous learning materials on a series of database related courses in the IT curriculum. The authors also designed and conducted several experiments to evaluate the educational effectiveness of the developed no-cost-to-students learning materials. Our team-oriented and systematic approach on development of cost free course material could be beneficial to our colleagues in the academic community who strive to make higher education more affordable to the students.