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Evaluating OER

How do I evaluate OER for my course?

Evaluating open educational resources (OER) for adoption in your course is very similar to assessing traditionally licensed materials, but some key differences:

  • Price is not a concern
  • Ability to edit and update
  • Ability to Integrate student content
  • Not as slick and shiny as commercial options

Most OER are not going to be able to compete with their commercial counterparts when it comes to glossy pages, elegant formatting, and well known authors. We can forget that such characteristics are not indicative of a textbook's pedagogical effectiveness, and that they are partially to blame for their high prices. If the scope and quality of the OER's content seems to suit your course, and its explanations, examples, and exercises effectively support your learning goals, consider giving that OER a serious evaluation.

The following checklists and rubrics can assist you in your evaluation and ensure you do not overlook a factor related to the "open" nature of the works.