Living Reference Work Entry

Encyclopedia of Educational Philosophy and Theory

pp 1-7

Date: Latest Version

Open Educational Resources


Open education; Open educational practices; Open access; Creative commons licensing; Pedagogy; Educational technology


For many in education, the term Open Educational Resources or OER probably translates functionally as “free resources on the Internet.” But this shorthand provides only a partial definition which obscures some of the key features and questions of interest that drive the “OER movement,” as the community of practitioners and scholars who are engaged with OER are often described. For example, how can educational resources be “free”? What is the significance of their “openness”? How do they get on the Internet? Also, what should we make of the fact that there is a “prehistory” of openness in education which predates current digital versions?

Along with their parent category, Open Education, OER belong to a pantheon of technology-enabled “opening” movements, including Open Source Software and Open Access that act as drivers for openness, collaboration, and ...

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