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Affordable Course Materials and Open Educational Resources for Faculty: Home

This is a basic guide for faculty interested in affordable course materials and open educational resources, providing information and links to resources.


Affordable Course Materials

University Libraries is dedicated to helping faculty locate, utilize, or produce textbooks and other course materials at low-cost or no cost to students. 

What are Open Educational Resources?

Open Educational Resources (OERs) 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 repurposing by others. OER include full courses, course materials, modules, textbooks, streaming videos, tests, software, and any other tools, materials, or techniques used to support access to knowledge. (From the William and Flora Hewitt Foundation)

The terms "open content" and "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) (This material was created by David Wiley and published freely under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license at

OER Mythbusting - SPARC dispels the myths associated with Open Educational Resources at

Library Services and Resources

The following services and resources provided by University Libraries can be utilized to provide affordable course material for your students.

Campus Resources

OhioLINK - Affordable Learning Ohio

Open Textbook Resources