When you assign openly licensed resources in your courses, you can design new kinds of assignments that take advantage of the rights they grant end users. In their article, "Defining OER-Enabled Pedagogy," Wiley and Hilton explain how the removal of copyright restrictions can allow students to engage with the course content and assigned resources in new ways that improve learning:
We accept as axiomatic that students learn by doing. The function of copyright is to prohibit people from engaging in broad categories of activity (e.g., making copies or creating derivative works) without permission from a rights holder. If students learn by doing, and copyright makes it illegal to engage in certain kinds of doing without a license, then copyright necessarily functions to limit the ways in which students can learn. The permissions to engage in the 5R activities that are granted in association with OER lift these restrictions. Consequently, when using OER, as opposed to traditionally copyrighted resources, students are free to engage in a broader range of activities and, therefore, to learn in a broader range of ways. (135)
The use of OER in teaching has led to the development of new kinds of assignments, as well as the reassessment of traditional ones. Some proponents of of OER-enabled pedagogy have argued against the standard assignment in which a paper is written for the professor alone and solely for the context of the course. Since most such assignments end up filed away or simply discarded after the grade is received, David Wiley termed them "disposable assignments" in 2013. He contrasts them with "renewable assignments," which have life beyond the classroom by being shared and openly licensed for reuse.
OER-enabled assignments in which students create and contribute to the knowledge commons align with the principles of High Impact Practices, specifically the engagement with the broader community and connecting course work with the world beyond the classroom.
The following chart from 2018 explains the characteristics that differentiate: