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Open Educational Resources (OER): Overview

What does "OER" mean?


Open educational resources are free and openly licensed (public domain, Creative Commons) educational materials that can be used for teaching, learning, research, and other purposes.

From Creative Commons

The 5 attributes of OERs give you permission to:

  • Retain - the right to own, archive, and make copies of the content

  • Reusecontent can be reused in its unaltered form

  • Revisecontent can be adapted, adjusted, modified, and altered

  • Remixoriginal or revised content can be combined with other content to create something new

  • Redistributecopies of the content can be shared with others in its original, revised or remixed form

From 5R Open Course Design Framework

Want to learn more?

Open Education Fact Sheet by the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition (SPARC)

A Faculty Perspective on Open Textbooks by Prof. Rajiv Jhangiani

2015-16 Babson Survey on the State of OER in U.S. Higher Ed. commissioned by the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation


OER Stories from faculty at Washington State Community and Technical Colleges

Open educational resources and college textbook choices: a review of research on efficacy and perceptions by John Hilton

The Review Project by the Open Education Group collects studies published about OER implementation and evaluations

Textbook costs

U.S. Student PIRG Reports by Ethan Senack et al. 

College Textbook prices have risen 88% since 2016 Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, September 2016

Triaging Textbook Costs from Inside Higher Ed

Let us know about OERs you've developed or adopted in your course!

Email Prof. Cailean Cooney, Chair of the Library's OER Committee at 

Or contact your library liaison.

Browse OER projects






Ursula C. Schwerin Library
New York City College of Technology
of the City University of New York
300 Jay Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201
Circulation: 718.260.5470
Reference: 718.260.5485

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