What are Open Educational Resources?
Open educational resources (OER)...
- Can describe any type of educational resource - textbooks, videos, labs, even entire courses!
- Are usually created by educators, libraries, museums / archival organizations, government agencies, publishers, etc.
- Can be used and shared freely
- Can be revised or remixed with other materials
- Usually have Creative Commons licenses or are in the public domain
David Wiley, a long-time proponent of open content, is known for creating the 5Rs definition of OER:
Not all freely available materials are openly-licensed. According to the U.S. Copyright Office, a work is "under copyright protection the moment it is created and fixed in a tangible form" - even if it doesn't have a copyright symbol or notice on the page.
All OER should have some sort indication they are openly licensed. This will usually take the form of a Creative Commons license.