"Open Knowledge Values," by Gideon Burton, CC BY-SA 2.0
Before using a particular OER, consider the following:
What is the quality of the OER? Is the author/creator an authority? Some sites, such as Merlot, have features, such as peer review and a statement indicating how many others have added the OER to their favorite list. Other OER repositories are based on materials from existing courses at major universities, a strong indication of quality.
What does the license of a specific OER permit others to do with it? OERs are protected by copyright, but also have Creative Commons licenses which allow reuse and often permit modification as well. Before altering or re-mixing OERs, make sure the creators permit modifications and give them credit for their original work (see Creative Commons Licensing for more information).
Several universities have made available the educational course materials developed by their faculty.
The educational materials for each course may include syllabi, lectures, notes, powerpoint presentations, readings, assignments, and video or audio lectures, depending on the course, the semester, and the professor.
Open textbooks are a response against the high-cost of college textbooks.
They are free or inexpensive cohesive course materials that often can be adapted for specific courses.