Tompkins Cortland Community College


Open Educational Resources

Tompkins Cortland Community College is a pioneer in the use of open educational resources (OER). To date, we’ve saved students hundreds of thousands of dollars in textbook costs while seeing significant improvement in success and retention rates. Currently, the College offers hundreds of sections of courses and one complete degree program that completely use OER. This means students do not have to pay for textbooks or any other materials for these courses.

Research shows that students are more likely to complete courses and earn better grades than students in courses that use expensive publisher materials. Also, content is available to students on or before the first day of classes.

What are OER?

Open Educational Resources (OER) are teaching and learning materials that may be used and reused, at low cost or without charge. OER often have a Creative Commons or GNU license that states specifically how the material may be used, reused, adapted, and shared.

OER are materials with which an individual can exercise five rights known as “The Five Rs.” They are:

  • Retain – you make, own, and control your own copy of the content
  • Reuse – use the content in its unaltered form
  • Revise– adapt, adjust, modify, improve or alter the content
  • Remix – combine the original or revised content with other OER to create something new
  • Redistribute – share your copies of the original content, revision, or remixes with others

The Five Rs are possible when materials are in the public domain or are made available with an open license such as a Creative Commons license.

Why Use OER?

  • Remove the barrier of high textbook costs and improve access to information for students
  • Take control of the learning content
  • Improve student success and completion rates
  • Collaborate with peers

Open Textbook and General OER

Complete Courses

 Videos and Lectures

OER Search Engines

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