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Open Educational Resources (OER): Overview

An Introduction to OER

What are Open Educational Resources (OER)?

Open Education Resources

Open Educational Resources (OER) are "teaching, learning, and research resources that reside in the public domain or have been released under an intellectual property license that permits their free use and re-purposing by others."  

From The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation

OER materials are released under an open license granting permission for every one to:

  • Retain -- users have the right to make, archive, and own copies of the content
  • Reuse -- content can be reused in its unaltered form
  • Revise -- content can be adapted, adjusted, modified, and altered
  • Remix -- original or revised content can be combined with other content to create something new
  • Redistribute -- copies of the content can be shared with others in its original, revised or remixed form.

OER include digital learning materials such as:

  • modules
  • lectures
  • homework assignments
  • quizzes
  • lab activities
  • games
  • syllabi
  • simulations
  • open textbooks
  • full courses

Zero Textbook Cost (ZTC)

ZTC and OER  are sometimes confused, but they do not mean the same thing. A ZTC course is one that uses learning materials that cost the students zero dollars, and may include such resources as e-books, videos, and websites. An OER course makes use of Open Educational Resources that are created and published under Creative Commons or other open licensing agreements.

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Creative Commons License
Lansing Community College Library Research Guide on Open Educational Resources (OER) Edited by Amy Larson, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. Based on design by Regina Gong