What is OER?

Open Educational Resources (OER) are “teaching, learning and research materials in any medium – digital or otherwise – that reside in the public domain or have been released under an open license that permits no-cost access, use, adaptation and redistribution by others with no or limited restrictions.” (William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, 2020)

How it works

OER has two components: license and cost

Creative Commons LogoLicense: OER are released with either a Creative Commons license or reside in the public domain. These licenses allow for revising, remixing, and redistributing course materials.

Image of symbol for "no-cost" resourcesCost: OER are often available at no cost, also known as Zero Textbook Cost (ZTC), or low cost to students. CUNY has provisions for designating courses taught as ZTC or low cost classes. Learn more about the CUNY ZTC designation in CUNYfirst.


Thanks to funding from Governor Andrew Cuomo and New York State, CUNY and SUNY are working to expand adoption of Open Educational Resources.

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