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Welcome to the Library Guide on Open Educational Resources

Welcome to the Library Guide on Open Educational Resources of The University of Groningen. In this guide, you can find information on the topic of Open Educational Resources (OER), including what OER are, why and how you can use them in teaching, and how you can make your own teaching materials into OER.

This main page aims to provide a short summary answering the main practical questions about OER: what are they, where can you find them, and what can you do with them. You can also find the latest news about OER-related events at the University of Groningen here. Using the side menu, you can find more in-depth guidelines on different aspects of (working with) OER, resource lists you can consult for finding sources of and instructions for working with OER, inspirational OER examples, and information on the support services the UG provides.

Do you want to know more about OER, or need help working with them? Check out our webpage on the UG website for more information on our support services, or email us at:

Open Educational Resources

Open Educational Resources (OER) are learning, teaching and research materials in any format and medium that reside in the public domain or are under copyright that have been released under an open license, that permit no-cost access, re-use, re-purpose, adaptation and redistribution by others. UNESCO Recommendation on OER (2019)


What can you do with OER?

  • Retain: download & save
  • Revise: reuse with adjustment
  • Remix: reorder, make a mashup
  • Reuse: use original, revised or remixed copy
  • Redistribute: share, repost

​See a more detailed overview at 5 R's framework by David Wiley

Examples of OER:

Openly licensed textbooks, articles, curricula, syllabi, lecture notes, assignments, tests, projects, audio, video, animation, MOOCs, e-modules, courseware, etc.

Using OER in Your Courses:

OER are becoming more prominent in higher education. They facilitate a quicker transition to online teaching, help educators reuse and create innovative learner-centered materials, improve access to education, and save resources. This video introduces the topic of OER, explores their practical application in courses, and encourages teachers to use them with the support available at the UG Library.

Except where otherwise noted, this video "Open Educational Resources" by Myroslava Zhuk is licensed under a CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 International license. The music in this video is "Background Chill Corporate" by Volodymyr Piddubnyk at Storyblocks, available under the royalty-free license agreement.

Would you like to learn more about OER?

Contact us at and explore the accompanying slides with additional information on OER in the slide notes.​

OER Repositories

SURF's search engine for OER from Dutch higher educational institutions.

One of the more famous OER repositories, created by California State University Long Beach and boasting almost 100,000 materials.

OER Commons 
Staple in the open education and OER community, and also provides a tool to create OER yourself.


Open Books and Textbooks

OpenStax College
Contains peer reviewed, quality open textbooks with interactive components. There are some amazing textbooks available here, with more in production.

Open Textbook Library
Hundreds of complete, open, college-level textbooks collected by the University of Minnesota.

Pressbooks Directory
Platform that hosts highly interactive and multimedia-filled open textbooks.


Open MOOCs / Open Courses

The University of Groningen also creates MOOCs, and has partnered with FutureLearn to share them on their platform.

Academic Earth
Lectures and videos from some of the most respected instructors in the world.

Large library of MOOCs, some of which have material freely licensed for re-use.

Library of college-level courses from a variety of high-profile universities. Some course materials are freely licensed for reuse.


Open Images

Open Peeps
Repository of cartoony drawings of customizable characters.

Search engine for CC licensed or public domain images.

Flickr Creative Commons
Millions of images with clear license information


News and events

Upcoming trainings and events

Would you like to try new and interesting things in your teaching? Do you need some inspiration, practical tools and support with redesigning your courses, making them more open and up-to-date?

During the international Open Education Week 2023 (March 6 - 10), we held an Open Education challenge series: 5 days, 10 challenges, done in 10 minutes or less. You can find the challenges and email texts we used here. They are openly licensed (CC-BY), so feel free to reuse them for at your own institution!

We currently are planning new workshops for the academic year 2023-2024. You can sign up for these workshops soon via the Library Calendar system LibCal. If you cannot make it to a workshop, you can check out the recording of a previous online version of the general OER workshop (26 October, 2021) and the slides full of useful information on open educational resources.


Interactive webinar: Redesign, enrich and transform your course with open educational resources



Questions? Ask the experts:

Subjects: Information Literacy, SmartCat, Systematic Review, OER