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Open Educational Resources (OER)

A faculty guide for finding, adopting, and creating OER for your courses.

Why Open Educational Resources (OER) Matter

Open Educational Resources (OER) are any type of educational material freely available for teachers and students to use, adapt, share, and reuse.

  • Examples of OER include learning content (lesson plans, assignments, textbooks, exams, and videos) as well as tools for learning.
  • OER are free or low-cost and available online for easy and immediate access. 
  • Textbook costs have a negative impact on student success. OER can be a solution to this problem.

Is Free the Same as Open?

Free does not equal open

Web pages, videos, and other freely available educational materials still may have copyright limitations for reuse and sharing. On the other hand, open educational resources (OER) give permission to reuse and redistribute to others. Depending on the Creative Commons license type, remixing and revising may also be permitted. 

By creating and adopting OER, faculty can do their part in democratizing learning

A Brief Walk-Through of OER

This guide is adapted from the excellent resource at the University of Pittsburgh.