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Open Educational Resources (OERs)

About OERs

  • What are OERs? Open educational resources (OERs) can range from textbooks to articles, assessments to study guides, provided that these teaching, learning, and research resources are available at no cost.

  • Why? Unlike traditional textbooks or library subscriptions, OERs are a particular type of open access information with the power to advance the common good of students through a reduction in costs associated with classroom learning.

  • Are they good? In terms of quality, OERs (including open textbooks) tend to be written by experts in their field, and they typically undergo peer review and/or professional editing. That being said, it is still important--as is the case with any publication--to assess the content for quality.

  • Brief history: Expanding access to resources for the common good has been at the core of the OER movement since 2002, when the term was coined at a UNESCO forum with a goal to “develop together a university educational resource available for the whole of humanity.” 

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