What do UNESCO, the federal government and Amazon have in common? They’re all supporting the quiet revolution of Open Education Resources. But like any good revolution, awareness can take some time to spread. And OER has a bit of an identity problem.
So what exactly are OER? Much more than free information on a web page.
“Open educational resources are educational materials (e.g., course textbooks, research articles, videos, assessments, simulations, etc.) that are either:
(a) licensed under an open copyright license (e.g., Creative Commons) or
(b) in the public domain. In both cases, every person in the world enjoys free (no cost) access to the OER and free (no cost) permission to engage in the “4R” activities when using the OER:
- Revise—adapt and improve the OER so it better meets your needs.
- Remix—combine or “mash up” the OER with other OER to produce new materials.
- Reuse—use the original or your new version of the OER in a wide range of contexts.
- Redistribute—make copies and share the original OER or your new version with others.
- Retain – keep access to the materials after the learning event.
These Rs are the big differentiators for OER. This allows maximum flexibility, sharing and more open teaching.
Want to get started? Check out my growing list of OER Resources!