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Open Educational Resources

by Sheena M Campbell – May 5, 2022

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

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:

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.

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.

Defining ‘Open’

The term “open” in “open educational resources” describe any copyrightable work (traditionally excluding software, which is described by other terms like “open source”) that is licensed in a manner that provides users with free and perpetual permission to engage in the 5R activities:

  1. Retain – the right to make, own, and control copies of the content (e.g., download, duplicate, store, and manage)
  2. Reuse – the right to use the content in a wide range of ways (e.g., in a class, in a study group, on a website, in a video)
  3. Revise – the right to adapt, adjust, modify, or alter the content itself (e.g., translate the content into another language)
  4. Remix – the right to combine the original or revised content with other material to create something new (e.g., incorporate the content into a mashup)
  5. Redistribute – the right to share copies of the original content, your revisions, or your remixes with others (e.g., give a copy of the content to a friend)


An OER Production Workflow for Instructors

This diagram from the University of Hawaii provides a visual for understanding the major steps in the adaptation and/or creation of OER: