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Open Educational Resources: Adopting and Creating OER

Resources for locating Open Educational Resources for Educators and Librarians

Adopting OER

Easy Steps to Get Started with OER:

  1. Search for and select a textbook in your discipline, using this guide or consulting with your Liaison Librarian.
  2. Mixing different resources together might be the best option for creating the perfect text. A Librarian will be happy to assist!
  3. Review and evaluate available options based on the content and whether it suits your teaching style and your students.   
  4. Decide if you want to use the textbook as is, edit, or modify the contents. One of the benefits of open textbooks is flexibility to customize them for specific course designs as much or as little as you desire. If you want to make edits or append content, make sure the licensing allows that. Different repositories will have different options for editing and publishing revised copies.
  5. Make sure your text is accessible to all students by making it available in several formats. Again, a Librarian can help. 
  6. Share your work with others by uploading your remixed work onto an OER website for others to benefit from.  

Evaluating OER

As faculty, you assess textbooks against a set of criteria that reflects your long experience and knowledge of student needs. You do the same with Open Textbooks, but there are a few additional considerations.

    * Content
         Accuracy of material, Richness, Depth, Breadth, Timeliness, Cultural context
    * Presentation
          Writing quality and tone, Reading level, Organization, Visual presentation, Hierarchy of information, Collateral materials

Additional Criteria

    * Accessibility online - Are the web pages for the textbook accessible?
    * Production options -  Is the book available in more than one format? Printed? Bound? PDF?
    * Platform compatibility - Is the textbook viewable and usable on both MAC's and PC's?
    * Delivery options - Is a bound copy available at a very low price? Will your bookstore be able to carry the printed version?
    * Interactivity - If the online version includes interactive software or multi-media files, are they accessible and cross platform?
    * Consistency between online and printed presentation -  Are the online and printed versions comparable in organization and basic appearance? Will you be able to identify locations in either with minimal confusion for students?

    * Collateral material - If there are test banks, interactive modules, or other enrichment materials, are they in a format you can use? Are they accessible?  Are they free or very inexpensive?


Student Feedback

The final piece of evaluation is to consider how your students felt about it once the course is complete.  Consider collecting student feedback with this Creative Commons Student Evaluation Checklist.  Edit it, modify it, print it out and pass it out.  

Frequently Asked Questions

Featured Resources

Open Textbook Adoption


“Open Educational Resource LibGuide” by Rachel Becker and Madison Area Technical College Libraries is licensed under a CC BY 4.0 International license.