Open Educational Resources Community of Learning

Module 1: What is OER?

graphic text- Open Educational Resources

Open Educational Resource (OER)

Open educational resources are educational materials and resources offered freely and openly for anyone and available under a license that allows users to use, remix, improve and redistribute. Sharing ideas and resources and collaborating on projects as part of a community is key to the Open Education movement.​

In Texas, Senate Bill 810 (SB 810), which was signed into law in June 2017, defined OER as:​

“‘Open educational resource’ means a teaching, learning, or research resource that is in the public domain or has been released under an intellectual property license that permits the free use, adaptation, and redistribution of the resource by any person. The term may include full course curricula, course materials, modules, textbooks, media, assessments, software, and any other tools, materials, or techniques, whether digital or otherwise, used to support access to knowledge.”

The key distinguishing factor of this type of educational resource is the copyright status of the material. If course content is under a traditional, all-rights-reserved copyright, then it’s not an OER. If it resides in the public domain or has been licensed for adaptation and distribution, then it is an OER. More on this will be covered in Module 4: Licensing.