Open Educational Resources (OER)
About this guide
This research guide will familiarize faculty members with Open Educational Resources (OER) and the growing OER movement within higher education. Faculty can also use this guide to identify sources of high-quality OER for use in their courses.
What are Open Educational Resources?
Open Educational Resources (OER) are learning materials that have been shared online such as textbooks, workbooks, and course modules that have been specifically labeled as free for anyone to download, customize and reuse.
Why should you consider OER?
Between 2008 and 2016 the cost of college textbooks has risen 88% (Bureau of Labor Statistics), and the College Board estimates that full-time students in 2-year colleges spent as much as $1300 per year (2015-2016) on textbooks. Struggling students and their families are increasingly forced to make hard choices about whether to purchase required course materials that they cannot afford or to attempt to pass their courses without them. Though students are the ones that have to pay for course textbooks, they have very little ability to influence the textbook market. Only Faculty members have the power to determine the amount of money students will have to spend on their course materials. Interested in replacing your expensive textbooks with an OER but don’t know how to get started? The library can help!
Frequently Asked Questions About OER
Additional Information About OER
Your SBCC Luria Library
SBCC Luria Library pays for faculty and students to have free access to thousands of academic journals available in our subscription databases. While not “open” these materials are available free of charge to SBCC students and faculty. See the list of databases available to you here. If you are looking for specific journal titles search here.Please contact one of your librarians for assistance.
Multi-Subject Open Textbooks Databases
COOL4Ed is a project of the California Open Educational Resources Council. It offers”149 free and open e-textbooks that have been reviewed by faculty colleagues in the California Community Colleges, the California State University, and the University of California.”
Multimedia Educational Resource for Learning and Online Teaching is one of the largest online repositories of open materials as well as a forum for collaboration and support of open education communities. It is program of the California State University System.
A searchable database of textbooks created by ISKME (The non-profit Institute for the Study of Knowledge Management in Education).
“A growing catalog of free, peer-reviewed, and openly-licensed textbooks”. This is a project of the Open Textbook Network, a collection of higher education institutions dedicated to promoting OER.
Funded by the BC Ministry of Advanced Education, these textbooks are openly licensed using a Creative Commons license, and are offered in various e-book formats free of charge, or print on demand books available at cost.
A project of Rice University, OpenStax has produced 25 textbooks written by subject experts. They have focused their efforts on producing textbooks for high-enrollment courses in higher education that have most the significant traditional textbook costs. OpenStax offers peer-reviews, supplemental materials, and support for faculty that adopt their open textbooks.
A collection of OER modules, textbooks, and course notes. The predecessor to the OpenStax Textbook project.
Curated lists of OER by Subject
Northwestern Michigan College has created a research guides for OER in Business, Computer Information Technologies, Economics, English, Geography, Geology & Oceanography, History, Humanities, Math, Psychology, Sciences, and Social Sciences.
Additional Sources of OER Material
Curated by Open Washington.org
A project of the US Department of Labor’s Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training (TAACCCT) and managed by CSU, SkillsCommons is a curated library of open materials that support career and technology workforce development.
“DOAJ is a community-curated online directory that indexes and provides access to high quality, open access, peer-reviewed journals.”
Free and completely open high-resolution photos. Licensed with a Creative Commons Zero license.
A repository of free media files licensed for reuse (often with attribution or other limitations) from the Wikimedia Foundation.
Over 53,000 free ebooks.
“Provides free public access to collections of digitized materials, including web sites, software applications/games, music, movies/videos, moving images, and nearly three million public-domain books.”
In response to student concerns about the current price of course materials, SBCC has secured a grant to provide professional development opportunities and support for faculty interested in switching from high-cost, traditionally published textbooks to free or low-cost Open Educational Resources.
Please consult the flow chart and stipend structure for Open Educational Resources adoption guidelines and incentives.
Open Educational Resources are considered “open” when they allow for the “5 Rs”:
Learn more about Creative Commons Licenses here.
Need Help citing Creative Commons materials properly?
Use this nifty Open Attribution Builder from Open Washington.
Need a refresher on Copyright basics?
Check out this Lumen Learning Course Module.