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Open Textbooks/Open Educational Resources: Home

Why Open Textbooks?

Open Educational Resources - A Snapshot

OER Image

Open Educational Resources are freely accessible, usually open licensed documents and media that are useful for teaching, learning, educational, assessment and research purposes. (Source: Wikipedia)

To be considered open, a text must be licensed in a way that grants a baseline set of rights that are less restrictive than standard copyright. A license or list of permissions must be clearly stated by the author.

Generally, the minimum baseline rights allow users the following:

  • to use the textbook without compensating the author
  • to copy the textbook, with appopriate credit to the author
  • to distribute the textbook non-commercially
  • to shift the textbook into another format such as digital or print

Many authors also grant rights such as:

  • to add, remove or alter content in the textbook, often on the condition that derivative works must have the same license
  • to copy and distribute the textbook without giving credit to the author to use the textbook commercially

(Source: Open Access Textbooks)

Creative Commons is a global nonprofit organization that enables sharing and reuse of creativity and knowledge through the provision of free legal tools. (Source: Creative Commons). OERs frequently employ Creative Commons licenses to allow their use in various settings.

The Textbook "Problem"