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Open Educational Resources: Integrating OER into Your Course

Let's make an OpenCCBC!

Authoring OER

You can use Authoring tools to both adapt and remix an already existing resource, or you can use them to create your very own OER. Some platforms already have authoring tools incorporated into their repositories that can be used for these purposes. Below are some examples. 

CCBC OER Planning and Assessing Tools

Open Pedagogy

Adopting OER for your course also opens the door to the world of Open Pedagogy. Students can help contribute to remixing OER for your course or by contributing to other course material for future lessons. The Open Education Group (CC BY 4.0) has a fantastic list of examples of these types of projects with links to the originals.

Take a look at some examples of Renewable Assignments below and read about how renewable assignments impact faculty and students.

You may also be interested in CCBC's own Open Pedagogy Faculty Fellowship. This fellowship is designed for faculty to work with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals in creating open and renewable assignments. Read more about the fellowship program here: UN SDG Fellowship.

Concerned about Quality? Evaluating and Adopting OER

OER should be evaluated the same way you would evaluate any resource for your course, taking into consideration the content, the ease with which the ideas are presented, and the ability of it to meet your course needs. In addition, when evaluating OER you will also want to consider how it can be presented and accessed by your students. But, the beauty of OER is that you are free to adapt and remix it to meet your needs!

Here is a rubric created by BCcampus Open Textbook Project to help evaluate OER (CC BY 3.0).

The Community College Consortium for OER also has a template for both evaluating and adopting OER for your course (CC BY 3.0 US).

You can find the PDF versions of each below.

As with any resource that isn't yours, be sure to give credit where credit is due! You can use the Open Washington Attribution Builder (CC BY 4.0) to help you select the best attribution for your OER.

Open Washington also has a self-paced workshop available freely on their site here. This workshop will take you through 10 modules, providing a great introduction to OERs.

Finally, two major OER sites, Open Textbook Library and MERLOT, engage in peer review of materials.

Open Washington Logo


Ancillary Materials

What are ancillary materials?

Ancillary materials are any materials that supplement teaching and learning. They can come in all types of formats. The most widely used ancillary materials are:

  • powerpoints/slide decks
  • self-check quizzes
  • videos,
  • homework sets
  • podcasts
  • lesson modules

Many commercial textbooks come with access codes that provide faculty with many of the above ancillary materials. This makes it really easy to integrate interactive and engaging content for your students, but it is also very expensive. In addition to purchasing the textbook (which is already expensive) students have to purchase the additional access code. In some cases students are paying this additional access code fee to just access their homework and quizzes!

Instead, you can create your own ancillary materials. Many faculty already have powerpoints or slide decks that they use consistently, but as the OER world continues to grow, more and more interactive ancillary materials are becoming available. Right here at CCBC we have several faculty working with faculty librarians to create these new materials. Check out the HLTH 101 activity guide: Prof. Rhea's Activity Guide.

You can get started creating your own ancillary materials using H5P. It's easy to create a free account and start trying out some activities. Additionally, you can search the eCampus Ontario repository for already created H5P activities.

You might also be interested in joining the Maryland H5P Collaborative which is a statewide initiative to work across Maryland Higher Education Institutions to come together around creating, coaching, and using H5P.