Where do I find OER?


The scope and availability of OER is ever expanding. Every week, new resources are being added to the global body of resources. One problem arising from this rapid growth is that there is no single comprehensive listing of all OER (nor, given the rapid expansion of digital content, is there likely to be one). This means that, in order to find appropriate OER, the user may need to employ a number of search strategies:

Use a specialized OER search engine
While popular search engines such as Google and Bing are a good general starting point for finding content online, there are also several specialized search engines that search specifically for OER. Their listings, however, are selective based on different search criteria so it is a good idea to try more than one. Here are a few of the popular ones:

Locate a suitable OER repository
Users should also access the major OER repositories to search for OER. Most are institutionally based, focusing on the materials released by that organization. A famous example is the Massachusetts Institute of Technology OpenCourseWare Repository (MIT OCW). Some repositories, such as MedEd PORTAL, have a specific subject focus, in this instance, medical photos and multimedia. Below are a few of the more significant OER repositories::

Use OER directory sites
There are many sites that have a search facility whose results point to places elsewhere on the Internet where resources match search criteria. They themselves do not act a repository, but have identified quality resources and store them in a database of web links. Their databases usually have a particular focus. In the case of OER Africa, for example, they highlight quality resources developed in and about Africa. Here are just a few:


OER Search, OER Commons, COL, Commonwealth of Learning, OER Africa, Creative Commons Search, Open Education Consortium, OpenLearn, MedEd PORTAL, AgEcon Search, MERLOT, Open Textbook Library, Wikimedia Commons, Serendipity, Internet Archive

Butcher, N. (2015). A basic guide to open educational resources (OER). Commonwealth of Learning, Vancouver and UNESCO. Retrieved from http://oasis.col.org/handle/11599/36

What is the life cycle of OER?