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Open Educational Resources (OERs)

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OERs: Basics

Open educational resources

OER definitions:

  • liberally licensed stuff for use in education
  • teaching, learning, and research materials in any medium that reside in the public domain or have been released under an open license that permits their free use and re-purposing by others (Hewlett definition
  • freely accessible, openly licensed documents and media that are useful for teaching, learning, educational, assessment and research purposes (Wikipedia)

Open Educational Resources meet the “4Rs Framework,” meaning that users have free access and all of the legal rights necessary to:

  • Reuse:  Content can be used in its unaltered form;
  • Revise: Content can be adapted, adjusted, modified or altered;
  • Remix: The 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.

Further information:

Types of OER

By level of interactivity with users:

By content format:

  • Text led
  • Video led
  • Animation led
  • Multiple media 

Useful OER resources/handbooks

Benefits of OER for an educator

The reusage of existing OERs helps you to:

  • free up time
  • expand your range of teaching materials
  • find additional sources for students
  • encourage students to refer to and cite teaching materials  
  • encourage students to be educators and start experimenting with learning and teaching materials.

The creation of own OERs helps you to:

  • raise your profile
  • improve the quality of your materials by collaborative work
  • improve your practice by encouraging you to reflect 
  • find people interested in and teaching/learning the same areas as you.
  • look outside your immediate environment and get broader and different views on topic areas.
  • learn new stuff which will reinvigorate your teaching.

Other resources:


Benefits of OER for an institution

Benefits of OER for a learner

History of the OER movement

Usage of OERs

Searching for OERs

Quality of OERs

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Releasing own OERs

Benefits of releasing your own OER

Misperceptions about Copyright

Deciding to Create OER

Development of OERs

Publishing OERs

Challenges when developing OERs

Software for making OERs

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OER: Best Practices

Do open educational resources have to be online?

Open textbooks

Open courseware

Open resources and open formats

European OER use cases

Worldwide OER use cases

Books about OERs

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OER Movement

Groups of people or individuals interested in OER

Ideas that stretch the idea of OER

OERs and developing world

Main discussion topics around OERs

Creating of OER and ownership

Fair dealing/use and OER

Current opportunities and challenges of OERs

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Searching for MOOCs


Types of MOOCs