Open Educational Resources, commonly referred to as OER, can help you alleviate some of the financial burden from your students that comes with attending college.
What is OER?
According to the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, “OER are teaching, learning, and research resources that reside in the public domain or have been released under an intellectual property license that permits their free use and re-purposing by others. Open educational resources include full courses, course materials, modules, textbooks, streaming videos, tests, software, and any other tools, materials, or techniques used to support access to knowledge.”
How can I create OER?
The good news is that you can create OER offline on your own computer using programs like word processing software like Microsoft Word (Don’t forget it’s free for Faculty and Students!!!), presentation software like Keynote, and layout platforms like Adobe InDesign. You will need a hosting option like the institutional repository at the University of Arkansas’s library. Additionally, you can create OER resources online using OER Commons OpenAuthor or OpenStax CNX.
How can I get funding?
You can receive funding by applying to the university’s OER Course Materials Conversion Program. You can receive up to $3,000 for OER Adoption compensation or up to $4,500 for OER Adaptation compensation, or up to $7,500 for OER Creation compensation. More details and the application to apply are available at https://libraries.uark.edu/oer/#apply.
How can I create assignments to support OER Projects?
There are thousands of OER materials available that can be potentially adopted or adapted for any number of lesson assignments in your course. You can also create your own OER items that can be the basis of assignments in your class. It could be something as simple as a rubric or lesson notes. The key is sharing these items outside of your classroom with the rest of the public.
How can I find what exists in my discipline already?
To see what OER materials are available in your specific discipline, schedule a consultation appointment with the OER librarian and other members of the Open Education Resources core team. These appointments tend to last about an hour and are great for determining what materials may already exist for your subject area. Schedule your consultation by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also view some good search options for locating resources on library’s Open Education guide.