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Open Educational Resources: Home


The purpose of this guide is to help you provide student course materials at no cost to them. Here you will find Open Educational Resources (OER) and sources that the library pays for that are licensed to be used by students.  You will also find best practices for embedding library content, links to OER collections, and assistance in finding resources.  Resources in this guide can be used as content for building online courses.  Materials may be used as an alternative to a textbook.  The objective is to eliminate textbook costs for the student. 

What are OER?

Open Educational Resources (OER) are teaching, learning, and research resources that reside in the public domain or have been released under an intellectual property license that permits their free use and re-purposing by others.  

The Problem

Chart from:  Colorado Department of Education

This model of textbook sales is unsustainable. According to The College Board textbooks and materials cost students $1,240 per school year (2019).  Another study illustrates that 64.2% of 21,000 students surveyed at Florida's Virtual Campus did not purchase the required materials for a course due to expense and 48.2% said that they took fewer classes because of textbook costs (2018).  

This guide was created by Sherry Tinerella under Creative Common Attribution 4.0 International License 

Benefits of OER

  • materials are accessible on the first day of class
  • cost savings
  • student GPA maintained or improved
  • increased retention of students

Textbook Affordability

OER is an opportunity to resolve textbook affordability issues.  So is using library-licensed materials.  These are books, videos, and learning objects that are paid for by the library and licensed for student use.  There is a cost involved but not to the student.  See the Library Course Materials tab for more information on these resources.  

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Sherry Tinerella