According to OER Commons, open educational resources (OER) “are teaching and learning materials freely available for everyone to use, whether you are a teacher or a learner.” These materials take a variety of forms and include complete courses, course modules, assignments, tests and quizzes, textbooks, videos, and so on. The following links are to websites where you can discover OER that are available to adopt or adapt and to guides that explain how to create your own.
- OER Commons
Created by ISKME, an education nonprofit, “OER Commons is a public digital library of open educational resources.”
- Connect OER
Created by SPARC (the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition), “Connect OER is a platform to share and discover information about OER activities at campuses across North America.”
- BCcampus Open Education Self-Publishing Guide
Authored by Lauri Aesoph, this guide “is a reference for individuals or groups wanting to write and self-publish an open textbook. This guide provides details on the preparation, planning, writing, publication, and maintenance of an open textbook.”
- Faculty OER Toolkit
Authored by Shannon Moist, this toolkit “is an information resource about and guide to adapting and adopting Open Educational Resources. Included are definitions and examples, information about Creative Commons licensing, and tips on how to adapt and/or adopt OER for classroom use.”
Why Open Education Matters
These two videos each give a brief introduction to open education and open educational resources.
A video we made about a topic close to our hearts – Open Education! Blink Tower is a small team based in Cape Town, South Africa – and we love making explainer videos! Feel free to share it, anywhere you like!
Second prize winner of the “Why Open Education Matters” contest sponsored in part by the Department of Education.
The Research Says…
Research on the impacts of OER as well as other aspects of OER creation and use is ongoing.
- OER Research Toolkit
Among other resources, this toolkit includes the OER Research Guidebook, which provides ideas on how faculty, librarians, and others can research the effects of their OER adoptions.
- OER Hub: Researching Open Education
“The Open Education Research Hub (OER Hub) are leaders in researching the impact of open educational resources (OER) on teaching and learning practices.”
- Review of OER Research (Open Education Group)
“This review provides a summary of all known empirical research on the impacts of OER adoption (including our own).”
- As Good or Better than Commercial Textbooks: Students’ Perceptions and Outcomes from Using Open Digital and Open Print Textbooks
This study from Kwantlen Polytechnic University “investigates the perceptions, use, and course performance of Canadian post-secondary students assigned a commercial or open textbook in either print or digital format.”