Open Educational Resources

What are Open Educational Resources?

Open educational resources (OER) are teaching, learning, and research resources available in the public domain or licensed through Creative Commons, so anyone is free to use or re-purpose them. OER are often incorporated by faculty to replace course textbooks or readings. Broadly, OER can incorporate any tools or materials used to support learning, including:

  • full courses
  • course materials
  • modules
  • textbooks
  • lesson plans
  • streaming videos
  • tests

Why is this movement important?

Many students cannot purchase required textbooks for courses and opt to go without, decreasing their success in a class. Given the high cost of textbooks, OER enables faculty to lessen the financial burden that students face by creating a zero cost course to increase student success and student retention. OER also provide faculty flexibility and creative customization when planning course content.

If awarded, the faculty member will receive half of the payment at the start. The second half will be paid when the syllabus (if implementing) is submitted or the OER is deposited into IU Scholarworks (if modifying, updating, or creating an OER). This funding will come as a salary addition with taxes taken out.

To apply, complete an OER application.

Questions about this project? Contact Julie Feighery at

Where do you find textbook alternatives?

The library has identified numerous textbook alternatives (including some OER materials) that we encourage you to explore.

Questions about OER or textbook alternatives? Contact Julie Feighery at