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Research Guides

Open Weeks

Events, exhibits, and information related to Open Access Week and Open Education Week.

Learn More About Open

What is Open Education Week?

Open Education Week is an opportunity to raise awareness and highlight open education efforts worldwide. Open Education efforts include Open Educational Resources (OER) and other pedagogical methods which build on the idea of free to access, use, and edit resources without restrictions.

What are Open Educational Resources (OER)?

Open Educational Resources (OER) are teaching/learning materials that are free to access (digitally) and have open licensing which allows for unrestricted use, retention, sharing, and editing. Anyone can create an OER, although many OERs originate from higher education institutions or open-focused publishers.

OER can be any type of teaching or learning materials, including textbooks, images, videos, slide decks, assessments, syllabi, and whole courses.

OER are always free digitally. They are often also available for print for the cost of printing, making print versions significantly cheaper than their commercial counterparts. For example, the 1272 page hardcover version of OpenStax College Physics is available for $48.50.

The open licensing, often in the form of a Creative Commons (CC) License, allow for unrestricted usages often referred to as the 5 Rs. The ability to:

Retain: Make, own, and control copies of the content

Reuse: Use the content in a variety of ways

Revise: Adapt, adjust, modify, improve, or alter the content

Remix: Combine the original or revised content with other OER to create something new

Redistribute: Share copies of the original content, your revisions, or your remixes with others

Using OER

There are three ways to use OER: 

  1. Adopt existing resources without making changes. 
  2. Adapt or customize existing resources by adding, removing, combining, or editing content
  3. Author new resources. 

Learn more:

Why use Open and Affordable Course Content?

  • Equitable, day-one access for all students
  • Faculty freedom to customize materials
  • More engaging learning experiences for students, especially from using customized materials
  • Improved student success, especially for those who are from historically underserved groups, first generation, part-time or Pell grant recipients