Open Educational Resources (OER) are a part of a worldwide movement to ensure free access to high-quality education, thus allowing students to use materials and attend classes from any part of the world. Unlike copyrighted materials, open educational resources are created to be widely shared and used, so authors retain few, if any, authorship rights.
"Open Educational Resources (OERs) are any type of educational materials that are in the public domain or introduced with an open license. The nature of these open materials means that anyone can legally and freely copy, use, adapt and re-share them. OERs range from textbooks to curricula, syllabi, lecture notes, assignments, tests, projects, audio, video and animation". (from UNESCO)
At the community college level, the focus has been on open textbooks. The rising cost of traditional textbooks has become a barrier for many students, stopping them from taking certain courses or not purchasing required textbooks for courses. Open textbooks ensure that the cost of textbooks never prevent students from receiving the education they desire.
An Introduction to Open Educational Resources
Elder, A. (2017, Dec 3). An Introduction to Open Educational Resources. Retrieved from https://youtu.be/NtJmakm1-zc
If you are unable to access the video, copy and paste the following link into your browser: https://youtu.be/NtJmakm1-zc
The key distinguishing characteristic of OER is its intellectual property license and the freedoms the license grants to others to share and adapt it. If a lesson plan or activity is not clearly tagged or marked as being in the public domain or having an open license, it is not OER.
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