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Open Educational Resources (OERs)

An introduction to sharable, free, remixable textbooks, modules, and other resources

What are OERs?

OER open educational resources

Open Education Resources (OER) are "Teaching, learning and research materials in any medium, digital or otherwise, that reside in the public domain or have been released under an open license that permits no-cost access, use, adaptation and redistribution by others with no or limited restrictions."

OERs were born from the Open Education movement, which seeks to use the technological tools of the Internet to make knowledge and learning affordable and globally accessible. Examples of material formats released as OERs include but are not limited to online courses, textbooks, videos, tutorials, lectures, syllabi, tests, blogs, and wikis.

Principles - "The Five Rs"

Within the bounds of Creative Commons licensing, there are 5 key points to consider when using OERs:

  1. Reuse - Content can be reused in its unaltered original format - the right to use the content in a wide range of ways (e.g., in a class, in a study group, on a website, in a video)
  2. Retain - Copies of content can be retained for personal archives or reference - the right to make, own, and control copies of the content (e.g., download, duplicate, store, and manage)
  3. Revise - Content can be modified or altered to suit specific needs - the right to adapt, adjust, modify, or alter the content itself (e.g., translate the content into another language)
  4. Remix - Content can be adapted with other similar content to create something new- the right to combine the original or revised content with other material to create something new (e.g., incorporate the content into a mashup)
  5. Redistribute - Content can be shared with anyone else in its original or altered format - the right to share copies of the original content, your revisions, or your remixes with others (e.g., give a copy of the content to a friend)

[https://nsufl.libguides.com/oer/5rs]

Open Access and Open Education

What's the difference?

Open Access (OA) refers to freely accessible materials available online, free of charge, and free of most copyright and licensing restrictions. 

Open Education Resources (OERs) are any type of OA educational materials that are in the public domain or covered by an open license. The nature of these open materials means that anyone can legally and freely copy, use, adapt and re-share them. OERs range from textbooks to curricula, syllabi, lecture notes, assignments, tests, projects, audio, video and animation.