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Open Educational Resources (OERs)

Overview

"Open Educational Resources are teaching, learning, and research resources released under an open license that permits their free use and repurposing by others. OER can be full courses, course materials, lesson plans, open textbooks, learning objects, videos, games, tests, software, or any other tool, material, or technique that supports access to knowledge." 

Source: SPARC

Pros and Cons

There are things to consider before deciding how or when to use Open Educational Resources:

  • Many OERs are free or low-cost which can help reduce the overall cost of course materials, such as textbooks.
  • Using materials that have already been created may save time and energy.  However, many of materials you find may need to be revised or adapted to suit your needs.
  • The quality of OERs can very significantly so you will need to take time to evaluate what you find.
  • Many OERs are in the public domain (under a Creative Commons License). Because copyright can be complicated, even the use of open source materials requires thoughtful planning.