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Open Educational Resources (OER)

The 5 Rs of Using OER

The 5 Rs of Using OER

Within the bounds of Creative Commons licensing there are 5 key points to consider when using OERs:

The 5 Rs of Using OERsImage by BCOER Librarians CC 4.0  Taken From BCcampus

Within the bounds of Creative Commons licensing there are 5 key points to consider when using OERs:

  1. Reuse - Content can be reused in its unaltered original format - the right to use the content in a wide range of ways (e.g., in a class, in a study group, on a website, in a video)
  2. Retain - Copies of content can be retained for personal archives or reference - the right to make, own, and control copies of the content (e.g., download, duplicate, store, and manage)
  3. Revise - Content can be modified or altered to suit specific needs - the right to adapt, adjust, modify, or alter the content itself (e.g., translate the content into another language)
  4. Remix - Content can be adapted with other similar content to create something new- the right to combine the original or revised content with other material to create something new (e.g., incorporate the content into a mashup)
  5. Redistribute - Content can be shared with anyone else in its original or altered format - the right to share copies of the original content, your revisions, or your remixes with others (e.g., give a copy of the content to a friend)

OERs include a wide range of materials: assessments, assignments, books, case studies, courses, journals, primary sources, reference materials, simulations, tutorials, tests, and textbooks. This material is based on original writing by David Wiley, which was published freely under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license at

An interesting OER Metaphor

An interesting OER Metaphor

An interesting OER Metaphor

Open Educational Resources (OERs)” - OER visualization ©Jisc All rights reserved





Primary producer/creator



Primary consumer

Enrolled student


Secondary producer/repurposer

Learning technologist/Course leader

Milk bottlers

Primary supplier

Learning technologist


Secondary supplier

deposit in institutional repository or open deposit

Human family

Secondary consumer

Teacher within or outside institution

Human family and pets

Sharers and re-users

Enrolled students of that teacher

Person with milk, Person with cocoa powder, Person with sugar – can make chocolate

Exchange and repurposers

other teachers within or outside institution

Chocolate in shop fridge


deposit in different open repositories

Chocolate eaten

re-users/maybe sharing

potentially global learners

Chocolate added to cake mixture

further re-purposing

potentially global teachers