Open Educational Resources (OERs): Create OER
Interested in creating your own textbook and course content? The following tools will help you plan and create.
Tools for Planning
- Google DocsFree, collaborative, cloud-hosted documents allows for multiple access points. You can also use Google Docs to create the textbook itself.
Tools for Creating
- PressbooksPressbooks is free to use, with Pressbooks watermarks in EPUB, MOBI and PDF exports. Contact OAI for questions regarding PSU's version.
- OER Commons OpenAuthorBuild and share content from scratch, or import text from Google Docs, embed media, and upload links. Tutorials available from link.
- ScalarFree, open source authoring and publishing platform that enables users to assemble media from multiple sources and juxtapose them with their own writing.
- OER PUBOpen-source tools that allows users to create content from scratch or convert existing documents.
License Your Work
Creative Commons License helps you to legally share your ideas and creations with others and enable them to build upon and make creative use of those items. The CC license is a standardized way to give the public permission to share and use your creative work.
There are 6 Creative Commons Licenses to choose from, each with varying degrees of restrictions, with CC-BY being the most accessible and open. Use the Creative Commons License Chooser to help determine which CC license is the best fit for you.
Source: "Wanna Work Together?" By Creative Commons is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0
Now that you have created your content, licensed and attributed the work, and checked for accessibility, you are almost ready to release it to a wide audience. For the final steps, we strongly encourage a review process by both peers and students.
- Have the item reviewed by others, ideally colleagues and other instructors teaching similar content in their classes. Are there gaps in the material? Are the examples relevant? Would they consider using the material in their own classes?
- Have the item reviewed by students. Students will have a unique perspective on the material and their feedback can be very valuable. Do they find the language unclear? Do the visuals convey the message you intend? Are there parts of the work they find not useful?
Once you are satisfied with the final product, you are ready to share it with others. Here are some places to promote and share your work
- Share it on PDXOPEN
- Share it on Open Oregon's Resource page
- Share it on OER Commons, a large repository of OER materials
- Share it on Open Textbook Library
- Share it in Canvas
- Promote it on social media
- Promote it on listserves in relevant subject areas
The BCcampus Open Education Self-publishing Guide is a reference for individuals or groups wanting to write and self-publish an open textbook. This guide provides details on the preparation, planning, writing, publication, and maintenance of an open textbook.
Authoring Open Textbooks
Authoring Open Textbooks is a guide for faculty authors, librarians, project managers, and others who are involved in the production of open textbooks in higher education and K-12. Content includes a checklist for getting started, publishing program case studies, textbook organization and elements, writing resources and an overview of useful tools. By Melissa Falldin and Karen Lauritsen.
Open Textbook Toolkit
The Open Textbook Toolkit was created by University of Toronto and is designed to support faculty who would like to create their first open textbook. Key sections include information on stakeholders, technology, copyright, accessibility, and general production and classroom use.
A Guide to Making Open Textbooks with Students
A Guide to Making Open Textbooks with Students is a handbook for faculty interested in practicing open pedagogy by involving students in the making of open textbooks, ancillary materials, or other Open Educational Resources.
PDXOpen is Portland State University's open access platform where textbooks are freely available on the web for students at PSU and beyond. Items in PDXOpen include an Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International (CC BY-NC 4.0) license which allows authors and others to remix, tweak, and build upon the work non-commerically. More information on submission guidelines and funding opportunities can be found on the PDXScholar Services page.
- BCcampus Open Education Accessibility ToolkitProvides the resources needed to ensure all content created is truly open and accessible to all.
- Inclusive Learning Design HandbookFrom Floe, this handbook is designed to assist you in creating adaptable and personalizable educational resources that can accommodate a diversity of learning styles and individual needs.
- OER and AccessibilityA joint project from California State University, MERLOT, Open Education Consortium, and the National Federation for the Bling with the mission of bringing together experts, advocates, and users to improve universal learning and accessible online teaching and learning materials.