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*LIST of Open Educational Resources: OERs by Program or Topic

For works not having a creative common license, you may link to the work as part of "Fair Use", but do not download and upload to your blackboard content. For Creative Common licensed material, follow licensing allowances.

Open Educational Resources (OER)

What does OER stand for?  
Open Educational resources.  Refers to the open nature, ie, you can do a lot more than with copyright - all- rights-reserved educational materials.  

Many educators are now adding a Creative Commons License to their original works.  Thus, allowing some degree of Retaining, reusing, revising, remixing and redistribution (5Rs).  It "Opens" copyright restrictions. 

Are the books in this area older versions of text books? 
Since some states have invested in education, they have funded the creation of OER textbooks, which the rest of us depend on for providing Free Textbooks. The goal is to use open resources, get comfortable, then start creating and sharing your own open works. 

All together - this will Save Students $1 Billion

Are the books there forever or just a set period of time?  
The textbooks are in repositories so that they remain available. When an updated version is available, a link from old material is provided to updated material.  It is essential to properly attribute and cite which work you are using for your class, so students use and cite the proper edition.

How do others use this? 

  1. Google Open Educational Resources  and then add your field
  2. Overview Open Educational Resources
  • Textbooks 
  • Open Courses
  • Repositories 
  • Institutional Change -  “z” (zero) textbook courses

Like a smoothie, an ADAPTATION / derivative / remix mixes material from different sources to create a wholly new creation.

Fruit smoothie ingredients


Attributions: “CC Smoothie” by Nate Angell. CC BY. Derivative of “Strawberry Smoothie On Glass Jar” by Element5 ( in the public domain, and various Creative Commons license buttons by Creative Commons ( used under CC BY.

  • In a “smoothie” or adaptation / remix, you often cannot tell where one open work ends and another one begins.
  • An example: an open textbook chapter that wove together multiple open educational resources in such a way where the reader can’t tell which resource was used on which page.
  • The endnotes of the book chapter should still provide attribution to all of the sources that were remixed in the chapter.

Like a TV dinner, a COLLECTION compiles different works together while keeping them organized as distinct separate objects.

TV dinner

Attributions: “CC TV Dinner” by Nate Angell. CC BY. Derivative of “tv dinner 1″ by adrigu ( used under CC BY, and various Creative Commons license buttons by Creative Commons ( used under CC BY.

  • When you create a collection, the copyrights in the individual works remain intact with the creators of those works.
  • The endnotes of the book collection should still provide attribution to all of the sources that were remixed or aggregated.
  • When you combine material into a collection, you may have a separate copyright of your own that you may license. However, your copyright only extends to the new contributions you made to the work. In a collection, that is the selection and arrangement of the various works in the collection, and not the individual works themselves.
  • For example, you can select and arrange pre-existing poems published by others into an anthology, write an introduction, and design a cover for the collection, but your copyright and the only copyright you can license extends to your arrangement of the poems (not the poems themselves), and your original introduction and cover. The poems are not yours to license.

Why Attributions?

Creative Commons Birthday Celebration cupcakes

Creative Commons (CC) Licenses

Copying a CC licensed work and sharing it: Must always provide attribution.

NonCommercial (NC) restriction: Do not use work for commercial purposes. 

No-Derivitive (ND) restriction: Do not change work before sharing. No (adaptations or derivatives) allowed. You may shift format from html to pdf or other format for usability.  If the underlying work is licensed under a NoDerivatives license, you can make and use changes privately but you cannot share your adaptation with others

Share Alike (SA): Must share copies or adaptations/derivatives using the same licence as original. This makes it harder to re-use works, because of incompatible licence restrictions.  If the underlying work is licensed under a ShareAlike license, then ShareAlike applies to your adaptation and you must license it under the same or a compatible license.

  • Copyrighted works: You cannot share copies of a work without permission of copyright holder, except in cases that meet "Fair Use" provision.
  • Creative Commons Licenses (CCL) with No-Derivitive (ND) restriction maintained - allows you to share copies of the original work without needing permission of original copyright owner - as long as you share the entire work without changing anything. 
  • "Fair Use" and Public Domain: Creative Commons Licenses (CCL) do not apply in circumstances where copyright does not apply. 
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