by Sheena M Campbell — May 5, 2022
by Sheena M Campbell — May 5, 2022

AggieOpen: Supporting OER Adoption & Creation

by Sheena M Campbell – May 5, 2022


The mission of the AggieOpen program is to promote a more equitable and culturally relevant educational experience at UC Davis by helping instructors to access, adapt, adopt and author openly licensed course materials. 

Through AggieOpen, the university seeks to expand the availability of openly licensed educational content to provide course materials at minimal cost for the benefit of both UC Davis students locally, as well as students of higher education globally.

In offering support to instructors who want to explore how Open Educational Resources are transforming higher education, the UC Davis Library joins the University of California systemwide movement towards making affordable course materials more widely available.


Email with questions about OER or to schedule a consultation related to using or creating openly licensed course materials.

Sheena Campbell

Student Services Department
Student Services Librarian


In this Guide:

AggieOpen encourages instructors to use openly licensed alternatives to commercially available course materials, such as open access or Creative Commons licensed publications, resources in the public domain, as well as learning objects and texts that instructors create themselves while achieving their pedagogical objectives.

Our goals are to

  • Promote the creation, adaptation, adoption, and curation of openly licensed materials by our instructors and students.
  • Provide support for instructors to incorporate openly licensed educational resources into their curriculum.
  • Improve availability and affordability of course materials.

Library experts can assist instructors with the process of finding, evaluating, and using open education resources (OER).

We provide consultation for instructors developing strategies to identify OER that support their teaching style and course learning outcomes, as well as navigating copyright and open licensing.

We also host OER Discovery workshops where instructors can learn more about the spectrum of openly licensed learning materials and begin exploring available OER in their field.

The UC Davis Library can help instructors:

  • Find free, openly licensed course materials including textbooks, streaming media, assessment tools, and dynamic content.
  • Author openly licensed course materials and textbooks using Creative Commons licenses.
  • Foster student engagement in creating openly licensed educational resources.

Request a consultation

Email with questions about OER or to schedule a consultation related to using or creating openly licensed course materials.

OER Discovery Workshop – Thursday, May 5 @ 12:00pm – 12:45pm (online)

Open educational resources encompass many types of teaching materials, including textbooks, assessment tools, and digital media. This session will provide attendees with strategies for finding, revising, and using OER that align with their syllabi. Participants will explore and evaluate resources, and receive an introduction to Creative Commons licensing. No prior knowledge or experience with OER is necessary!

Registration: join us online via Zoom


AggieOpen Fellows initiative to launch in 2022-2023

The AggieOpen Fellows initiative will invite instructors to apply for grant funding to adopt, adapt or create open educational resources (OER) for undergraduate courses.

Sponsored by the UC Davis Library and LibreTexts, these grants are intended to fund the work involved in identifying, revising, creating, using, and/or sharing OER as alternatives for required commercial textbooks.

Alternatives may include:

  • existing scholarly resources such as articles, books, video tutorials, or conference papers that are freely available through open access publishing;
  • digitized primary source materials such as manuscripts, photographs, books, video, sheet music, audio recordings, maps, or artwork;
  • simulations, visualizations, and virtual labs.

The financial awards are meant to offer an incentive for the time it will take instructors to identify new resources, adjust syllabi, and modify assignments and can also be used to cover any actual expenses incurred by the instructor (ex. closed captioning, translation, etc.).

What are Open Educational Resources?

Open Educational Resources (OER) are teaching, learning, and research resources that, through permissions granted by their creator, allow others to use, distribute, keep, or make changes to them.

Free and immediate access to learners includes resources in the public domain, creative commons licensed and open access publishing

OER are teaching resources that have an open copyright license (such as one from Creative Commons), or they are part of the public domain and have no copyright. Depending on the license used, OER can be freely accessed, used, revised, and shared.

Examples of open educational materials includes open textbooks, streaming media, canvas modules, lecture slides, quiz banks and tests, games, models and simulations, homework platforms

Why should I use OER?

One of the driving factors for the adoption of OER, such as open textbooks, is they are free. Resources that are free and immediately accessible to all students on their first day of class are essential to promoting educational equity, as well as promoting lifelong learning. But cost savings is not the only benefit of using OER.

Creative Commons licensing is also what allows instructors to directly edit, revise and adapt content to provide more culturally relevant, topical and dynamic content to their students. Using Creative Commons licensing also makes it easier to share learning materials amongst colleagues and engage students to participate in the content creation process.

Reasons to adopt OER include free and immediate first day access to all course materials, the ability to revise and remix customizable content for instructional needs and the ability to easily create and share resources

Open Educational Resources:

  • Reduce education costs by providing course content that is freely accessible to students on day one of class.
  • Enable customization of course materials by revising openly licensed content to better align with learning objectives or to provide more culturally relevant curriculum.
  • Reduce faculty preparation time by using openly licensed ancillary materials including assignments, quiz banks, and homework platforms.
  • Facilitate collaboration by working with students to create your own open educational resources.
OER Mythbusting

OER Mythbusting addresses the top seven myths about OER in North American higher education, as voted on by more than 100 faculty, librarians, students, and other members of the OER community.

OER Collections Guide

This is a curated list that contains platforms, collections, and repositories that host openly licensed educational materials to help you to discover OER content.

OER Training Handbook

A three-part training guide from the University of Hawaii designed to bring higher education instructors up to speed with Open Educational Resources (OER).

OER Starter Kit

This starter kit from the University of Alberta has been created to provide instructors who are entirely new to Open Education with an introduction to the use and creation of open educational resources (OER).

Open Education Reader

This is a collection of readings on open education edited by Chief Academic Officer of Lumen Learning, Professor David Wiley. It includes chapters on intellectual property, free software, open-source, open content, open textbooks, and research in open education.