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Open Educational Resources

What is OER

Open Educational 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. - UNESCO

How to use OER

YouTube Video, Creating OER and Combining Licenses - Full, by TheOGRepository, published on Sep 5, 2012

The OER Starter Kit Workbook

The 5 R's of Openess

the right to make, own, and control copies of the content

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)

the right to adapt, adjust, modify, or alter the content itself (e.g., translate the content into another language)

the right to combine the original or revised content with other open content to create something new (e.g., incorporate the content into a mashup)

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) 

This material was created by David Wiley and published freely under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license at:

OER by Disciplines

Open Resources

Open Courses

  • Offers full courses online. Though they charge students to enroll, they have composed their courses using mostly open materials that can be copied, adapted, etc.
  • Open Course LibraryThis WA project offers 81 of Washington's most enrolled courses. There are a lot of great readings in these course files. Great community college content.
  • Open Learning InitiativeComplete courses from Carnegie Mellon University
  • MIT Open CoursewareOpen courseware developed by MIT.
  • OpenLearn: All of the learning materials presented on this site are CC licensed, but don't confuse "Learning Spaces" with the full Open University- their licensing/copyrights are different.
  • EdX: A collection of college-level courses from a variety of high-profile universities. Some course materials are freely licensed for reuse.


Open Textbooks


Open Repositories

  • OER Commons: Offers a variety of OER at a variety of levels and subjects. Use limiters on left side of results page.
  • OASIS: OASIS (Openly Available Sources Integrated Search) offers the ability to search a range of OER materials from multiple sources, such as textbooks, courses, corresponding materials, interactive simulations, and public domain books and resources.
  • MERLOT: One of the biggest OER repositories, but a bit unwieldy and difficult to search. Use limiting options on the left side of results page.
  • Mason OER Metafinder: Searches 15 OER repositories simultaneously. 
  • Applied Math and Science Education Repository (AMSE)
  • OAPEN - Online Library and publication platform; open access publishing in European networks
  • OER World Map - Enabling the exchange of data, experiences and ideas among open educational actors and communities.

Open Images and Multimedia

  • Creative Commons Search
    Creative Commons has created this really useful search engine that lets you search for resources that are CC licensed. The image search is the most useful.
  • TED Inspiring thinkers on a range of subjects present big ideas and lectures on a regular basis- completely CC licensed.

Citing OERs

Citing OERs in APA


Lincoln, A., Koschmider, A., Salciccoli, A., Wregglesworth, K., Pontoni, M., Wozniak, M., . . . Kilgus, T. (2017) World history. Retrieved from CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 license.


Roe, K. (2012, April 22). Leads castle [Photograph]. Retrieved from CC BY 2.0 license.


Khan Academy. (2017, January 16). History and prehistory: The origin of humans and human societies [Video file]. Retrieved from CC BY license.

Citing OERs in MLA


Lincoln, A. et al. Human Rights. MIOpenBook, 2017. OER Commons, Accessed 29 January 2019. CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 license.


Roe, Karen. Leads Castle. 2012 Online image. Flickr. Web. 29 January 2019. Retrieved from CC BY 2.0 license.


“History and Prehistory: The Origin of Humans and Human Societies.” YouTube. Uploaded by Khan Academy. 16 January 2017, <> CC BY license.