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Open Educational Resources (OER): How To Get Started With OER

This guide provides a basic understanding of OER materials, including how to find, evaluate, and use them for teaching and learning.

SPECIAL NOTE:

The items on this page are just a sampling of what is available.  Feel free to contact the St. Ambrose University Reference Librarians for assistance in finding other items available.  Call 333-6245, or visit the Librarians in the Library between 8:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m., Monday - Friday.

This page is designed to help the University community find, evaluate, and use OER.  However, don't forget that there are already many electronic resources available to you through the St. Ambrose University Library.  The Library has subscribed to full-text journals, databases, primary content, and e-books.  These resources are restricted for use by University faculty, staff, and students (you must log-in to access them when off-campus).  They do not allow for customization and re-use in the same way as OER materials.  Although they are not "open", they are resources that you can make available at no cost for your students.

For assistance with these licensed materials, please contact the Reference Librarians at 333-6245, or email librefdesk@sau.edu.  Or visit the Library website to access these materials: http://libguides.sau.edu/az.php

General OER Sources

MERLOT (merlot.org) is a free and open peer-reviewed collection of online teaching and learning materials and faculty-developed services contributed and used by an international education community.  A good source for Business, Education, Music, Political Science, and Sociology subject areas.

OER Commons (oercommons.org) The OER Commons is a single search source that pulls from multiple OER collections, including MERLOT and Connexions.  It is a great first step in an OER search, but often more results can be found by searching the specific collection.  A good source for Business, Education, History, Life Sciences, Psychology, and Sociology subject areas. 

Accessibility Toolkit - 2nd edition (https://opentextbc.ca/accessibilitytoolkit/) is a free online collection of resources to help authors create their own  OER in accessible formats according to the concepts of universal design.

Open Textbook Collections

OASIS -- Openly Available Sources Integrated Search
Search over 155,000 open educational resources (OER), developed by SUNY Geneseo.

 

The Open Textbook Library (OTL, https://open.umn.edu/opentextbooks/) is part of the Open Textbook Network, founded by the University of Minnesota.  There are over 350 textbooks that are peer-reviewed and must meet specific criteria to be included.

LibreTexts (https://libretexts.org/) was founded by the University of California, Davis, and contains free online books, educational materials, and 3D interactive elements.  Additional materials are being added due to a grant from the Department of Education.

OpenStax (https://openstax.org/) was developed following traditional textbook publishing methods, including peer review, editorial support, and creation of ancillary content. Books are available in multiple formats (PDF, print on demand, on the Web) and are licensed to be revised and remixed by faculty who want create a custom solution for a course.

Directory of Open Access Books  (https://www.doabooks.org)  has over 13,000 peer-reviewed books from 282 publishers.

BCcampus OpenED  (https://open.bccampus.ca/find-open-textbooks/) developed in British Columbia, and contains open textbooks on a variety of subjects from Art to Social Sciences.

Book Boon (https://bookboon.com) specializes in accounting, economics, engineering, marketing, management, and IT.  

University of Hawaii Open Educational Resources -- (https://dspace.lib.hawaii.edu/handle/10790/3027) has textbooks on a variety of topics.

Open SUNY Textbooks -- (https://textbooks.opensuny.org/browse-oer/) is an initiative established by the State University of New York, and includes open textbooks and open courses.

Digital Collections, Images, Videos

Digital Public Library of America -- digitized collections from libraries, museums, and archives all around the world. Includes an App Library that includes open data that can be used by software developers, researchers and others to create new learning environments and tools for discovery.

HippoCampus -- free videos in 13 subject areas

Internet Archive -- free movies, music, books, and access to the Wayback Machine

Khan Academy -- Interactive exercises, videos, and assessments in math and sciences

Library of Congress -- contains digitized photos, papers, maps, etc. in areas of art, history, government, 

NSDL: National Science Digital Library -- digital resources and learning objects in the areas of education, math, science, and technology.  Results can be filtered by education level.

PHET -- interactive simulations for science and math

Open Access Articles

Directory of Open Access Journals - full-text access to articles from over 8,000 scholarly and scientific journals.

Frontiers -- full-text access to articles in science, medicine and psychology

JURN -- over 3,000 arts and humanities journals; most have open access to articles, some with partial access

Open Science Directory -- full-text access to over 13,000 scholarly and scientific journals from around the world

PLoS -- Public Library of Science.  Publishes peer-reviewed open-access journals in science and medicine

PubMed Central -- full-text access for articles from over 1,100 medical and scientific journals and selected articles in over 2,000 additional journal titles

SCIRP -- contains more than 200 open access journals in the areas of science, technology, and medicine