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Open Educational Resources (OERs)

Educational materials made freely and legally available on the Internet for anyone to retain, reuse, revise, remix, and redistribute.

Steps to OER

1) Set Aside Time.
Searching for OER takes time and persistence, just like research.

2) Look At Your Current Text.
Is your current textbook available for free through the library databases?
(If it is, be sure to verify with that library that we have an unlimited license for the book!)

3) Browse Open Repositories.
Browse several repositories (found below) to get an idea of what content is available.

4) Locate An OER Text.
Check to see if a whole OER textbook already exists for your course.

5) Collect Materials.
If you can't find one OER textbook, look at your learning objectives and find different materials for different topics.

Don't hesitate to reach out to the OER Coordinator or your Subject Librarian at any point in this process!

Steps adapted from a photo by Northwestern Michigan College (NMC) Library Research Guide on Open Educational Resources (OER) by NMC Librarians. Licensed CC BY 4.0.

Search Tips

  • Start broadly and narrow your search as you go
  • Think about alternative search terms that may be more effective
  • If you're having trouble, search pieces of your course outline, rather than your broad topic
  • Search a variety of sources - while there will be overlap, you may find appropriate pieces in different databases

OER Repository Best Bets


OER Search Tool out of SUNY Geneseo that aims to make the discovery of open content easier. Searches open content from almost 100 sources.

Open Textbook Library

Collection of open textbooks from other sources that include extensive faculty reviews from a variety of colleges and universities. Out of the University of Minnesota’s Center for Open Education.

Lumen Learning

Course content with some faculty resources such as quiz banks.


Peer-reviewed open textbooks that are created using the traditional publishing process but funded ahead of time by foundations and the OpenStax group. Affordable hard copies available as well as low cost course wraparounds and some free faculty supports.

BCcampus OpenEd

The B.C. Open Textbook Collection is home to a growing selection of open textbooks for a variety of subjects and specialties. Discover open textbooks that have been reviewed by faculty, meet our accessibility requirements, and/or include ancillary materials (quizzes, test banks, slides, videos, etc.).

eCampus Ontario's Open Library/Open Resource Catalogue

Curated collection of top subject areas in post-secondary education with reviews from experts and educators across Canada.

The Mason OER Metafinder

A federated search of 15 open educational resource sites. From George Mason University.

Criss Library eBooks

Sometimes we are able to get licenses to use eBooks under multi-user licenses. If you’re using this in a class, this can be a cost effective way to move forward with affordable content. It’s not available for every book, so verify with us that we have or can get it.

More OER Repositories