What are Open Educational Resources?

Open Educational Resources (OERs) are teaching, learning, and research resources that reside in the public domain or have been released under an open copyright license that permits their free use and re-purposing by others. OERs include full courses, course materials, modules, textbooks, streaming videos, tests, software, and any other tools, materials, or techniques used to support access to knowledge. [1]

Thanks to OERs, students in Ontario have already saved $1.7 million and that number continues to grow as students head back to school this Fall.

What are the pros to OERs?

  • OERs make education more affordable and accessible for students
  • OERs are high-quality educational materials
  • Instructors have the ability to customize course materials [1]

Why should my instructor(s) use OERs? What are some incentives?

Instructors can create, adopt, and review textbooks through eCampusOntario’s online textbook library. Instructors will be compensated if they choose to create or review an open textbook. Instructors will know that all students, regardless of ability to pay for a textbook, will come to class ready and able to participate fully. More professors will be able to create custom learning materials for their class, leading to a more diverse and adaptable education.

Want your instructor to adopt OERs? Here is a draft letter to get you started.

Ways you can get involved:

  • Reach out to your student government to see what’s already happening on your campus
  • Let your peers know about OERs
  • Talk with your faculty and/or instructors about OERs
  • Tweet the price of your textbooks this semester to @OUSA and show us how #TextbookBroke you are

    For more information on eCampusOntario’s open textbook library visit their website.


In January, students shared stories about the detrimental costs of textbooks on their wallets and mental health. Here are some highlights from Twitter.

This Fall's campaign will run from September 10-14th on campuses and continue on social media until Sept 21st.



Special thanks to eCampusOntario for your continued support and resources.


[1] “For Students: What Does OPEN Mean for Students?,” Open Educational Resources, University of Saskatchewan, accessed January 8, 2018, https://teaching.usask.ca/curriculum/open-pedagogy.php?utm_source=open&utm_medium=redirect&utm_campaign=2017-08-22#Resources