Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Open Educational Resources: Home

OER banner

Open Educational Resources (OER) are freely accessible teaching, learning, and research materials in any format that are in the public domain or are available under an open license that allows their free use and re-purposing by others.

 

The term open educational resources (OER) was first introduced at a conference hosted by UNESCO in 2000 and was endorsed in the context of providing free access to educational resources on a global scale.

OER include a varied range of materials: books, case studies, courses, journals, primary sources, assessments, assignments, reference materials, tutorials, tests, and more.


Users can:

5 R's

The 5 R's - Source http://opencontent.org/definition/

Use OER to provide an affordable, accessible, and engaging learning experience.

... Access, Equity and Pedagogy 

 

Benefits:

  • Students, staff and everyone anywhere can access OER at any time for free
  • OERs can supplement textbooks and lectures where deficiencies in information are apparent
  • OER has demonstrated an increase in student learning while removing barriers of accessibility and affordability
  • Develop digital literacies
  • Open for addressing diversity and inclusion
  • Persistent availability of resources 
  • Academics/users can customize/adapt to their context/needs
  • Fast availability of material may increase the timeliness and relevance of the material being presented
  • Reduces inequality to education - supports Sustainable Development Goal 4

Challenges in using OER

 

  • Quality Assurance

OER release should be subject to ongoing Quality Assurance process which is transparent and fair, however this is not always the case.

  • Sustainability

Without preservation of these often one-time start-up OER projects, the initial funding will end after a few years and sustaining the resources will be expensive, the resources may become outdated and the quality gone.

  • Lack of understanding about OER

Many do not understand the potential of OER and feel that it threatens their ownership of intellectual property. Also, it takes time to creat and/or locate existing OER.

Search tools that make the discovery of open content easier:

 

► Maryland Open Source Textbook (MOST) Commons an online space designed to support faculty and staff in discovering materials, collaborating with colleagues, and contributing OER to improve curricula.

► Mason OER Metafinder - performs a simultaneous search across 21 different sources of open educational materials.

 OASIS - Openly Available Sources Integrated Search - searches open content from 72 different sources

Use OER instead of commercial textbooks if it’s pedagogically fitting.

 

Resources to get you started:

 

Homepage - National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning in  Higher Education

Using OER and OEP for Teaching and Learning


OER TOOLKIT

The toolkit provides information and tools to understand, engage with, and sustain OER in practice.


There is no central repository for OER, here's some key resources: 

 

BC campus

Use open technologies to facilitate, evaluate, and create open educational resources to share.

Checkout your subject or discipline: 


Explore, create, and collaborate with educators around the world to improve curriculum using this public digital library of open educational resources.


862 Open Textbooks

Textbooks in the Open Textbook Library are considered open because they are free to use and distribute, and are licensed to be freely adapted or changed with proper attribution.


Coursera

Learn Without Limits

Build skills with courses, certificates, and degrees online from world-class universities and companies.


 OPEN LEARN 

  Free Online Course

  What is open learning and why OER?


Galway 091-742785 | CCAM 091-745409 | Mayo 094-9043146 | Letterfrack 091-742666 | library@gmit.ie