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Open Educational Resources

How do I know if something is an Open Educational Resource?

OER materials are usually identified by whether or not the 5 Rs apply.

Retain: Continued access to the content

Revise: Change and update the content to meet your needs

Remix: Combine the content with other resources and create something new

Reuse: Publicly use the content, whether original, revised, or remixed

Redistribute: Freely share the content in its original or revised form

Many OER materials are licensed under a Creative Commons License. Creative Commons is an easy way to grant copyright permissions for others to use your creative work. You can learn more about Creative Commons on the Licensing tab of this guide.

This material is an adaptation of Defining the "Open" in Open Content and Open Educational Resources, which was originally written by David Wiley and published freely under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license at

Can I adapt an open textbook for my course?

Depending on the type of license used, you may be able to adapt an open textbook.

Starting Points

 Your liaison librarian is available to help you search for existing materials! 


When looking for an OER, remember to keep in mind accessibility while you are evaluating the content. These resources can help you approach evaluation more strategically.