About OER

Open Educational Resources (OER) are open license and publicly available materials for education. As the Affordable College Textbook Act was introduced, a few OER projects were initiated and funded through the U.S. Department of Education. These materials are available for anyone to use. Some resources also allow users to improve and even redistribute the resources under a Creative Commons license.

OER have gained momentum with more funding opportunities in recent years. This growth is evident from Community College Consortium for Open Educational Resources. Research has shown that there have been no differences in learning efficacy between OER and commercial textbooks. However, the withdrawal rate for courses using OER is significantly lower.1 Research at Triton College has shown that even a single program adopting OER saves their students over $200,000 a semester.

Many educators, from kindergarten to higher education, have been moving away from traditional textbooks and introducing different forms of free course materials in the classroom. Subsequently, the quality and usability of these contents have been gradually improved. It also further addresses digital accessibility.

The Waubonsee Community College Library also has a robust collection of digital OER resources available for use.

OER Resources

AMSER Applied Math and Science Education Repository
BCcampus Higher Education - B.C., Canada
CMU Open Learning Initiative Carnegie Mellon University
GALILEO Open Learning Materials University System of Georgia
JHSPH OpenCourseWare Johns Hopkins University
Learn OER Austin Community College
Mason OER Metafinder George Mason University
MERLOT California State University
MIT OpenCourseWare Massachusetts Institute of Technology
OER@AVU African Virtual University
OER Commons K-16
Open Course Library Washington State Board
Open Culture Cultural & Educational Media
OpenStax Rice University
Open Textbook Library University of Minnesota
Saylor Academy Open Textbooks Saylor Academy
Stanford Open Learning Initiative Stanford University
The OER Starter Kit Iowa State University
The OER Starter Kit Workbook City University of New York
TU Delft OpenCourseWare Delft University of Technology
UMass Boston OpenCourseWare University of Massachusetts Boston
World Digital Library U.S. Library of Congress / UNESCO

1Clinton, Virginia & Khan, Shafiq. (2019). Efficacy of Open Textbook Adoption on Learning Performance and Course Withdrawal Rates: A Meta-Analysis. AERA Open. 5. 233285841987221. 10.1177/2332858419872212.