Open Educational Resources

Image_Open Educational ResourcesThere has been a lot of discussion lately regarding the expanding cost of resources with students (and faculty) finding it more difficult to afford course materials.

In the interest in helping alleviate some of this, we have put together a guide to some useful resources that can be used in classrooms, or that are available to anyone who wishes to learn on their own.

Everything on this guide is free and legal to use.

It is here: (http://fitchburgstate.libguides.com/openeducation)

This guide includes the following:

Open Educational Resources – these are Educational Resources that are Open Access;  in other words, they free to use.    This tab includes the following:

  • Open Textbooks  – These are peer-approved textbooks which have been created by experts within many academic fields.  You may find these to be as good, if not better than some of the textbooks you are already assigning
  • Digital Repositories – These are storage databases for journal articles which are within public domain or have been granted “Green Open Access.”   These repositories help to both alleviate the cost to universities regarding the increasing cost of periodicals and also make high level material available to the general public (or your students).
  • Open Access Journals – Similar to the above repositories, these are periodicals which have made themselves freely available to the Public
  • Free Course Materials – These are resources, often from top institutions, that can be used in your classrooms.  They can be extremely helpful as supplementary tools for your existing classes and labs.

Open Source SoftwareHere’s a list of a few good examples Free Open Source software which can serve as a substitute for many expensive commercial packages.

The content is divided up as follows:

  • Operating Systems – tired of being locked into a Microsoft or Apple environment?   There’s Linux, but also many more options, which are getting easier and easier to use.
  • Learning Management Systems – If you don’t like working with some of the existing commercial platforms (or find them too complicated), there are a few helpful options here
  • Open Source Software – This is just a very brief list of a few useful items which may serve as adequate substitutes to popular commercial items.

We always open to suggestions for new items to be added.  If you know of a great resource, please do not hesitate to contact us!

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