Open Education

    Guarantee inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities by sharing your educational materials

    Open Educational Resources (OER) are freely accessible digital materials available for reuse within education.

    Open Educational Resources

    The basics of Open Education

    What is Open Education?

    Open Education 

    Open Education is the sharing of knowledge, as well as building on existing knowledge, with the aim of global participation in Open Educational Practices and free access to high-quality Open Educational Resources.  


    What is our objective?

    The library supports teaching staff in the reuse of Open Educational Resources for the benefit of Open Education. In doing so, we contribute to the improvement and innovation of education and give additional opportunities for Blended Learning. 

    Because of this, we act accordingly to the national and international ambition to make as many digital educational resources freely available as possible: the Universities of the Netherlands, the Association of Universities of Applied Sciences and SURF have signed the Declaration on the National Approach to Digital and Open Educational Resources. By signing this declaration Dutch higher education institutions have agreed to work together to create, share, reuse and purchase educational materials. 

    Finding resources

    Finding Open Educational Resources 

    The best sources for Open Educational resources are collected by the library's Collection Specialists and Embedded Librarians. They offer advice and support with the search for Open Educational Resources. 

    Overview of Open Educational Resources

    In practice

    Working with Open Educational Resources 

    The acceleration plan Education Innovation with ICT has led to an increased awareness of the use of digital Open Educational Resources. In collaboration with SURF and the Open and Online Education Workgroup, the Edusources platform has been developed. 

    This platform offers Open Educational Resources with Creative Commons licences that teaching staff can view, download, adapt, use and assess. As an institution, you can share your educational resources by creating a subject community or offering separate materials. 


    To offer educational resources for reuse they must be freely accessible and provided with an open licence. Most Open Educational Resources have a Creative Commons (CC) licence. Do you need more information or do you have questions about copyright or Creative Commons licences?

     Contact the Copyright Information Point

    Subject communities and subject vocabularies 

    A subject community is a group of colleagues organised around a shared expertise. Such a community can identify the needs within the field and, based on that, build and maintain a collection of Open Educational Resources. 

    One tool for sharing and finding Open Education Resources are subject vocabularies. A subject vocabulary is a tool that can assist with sharing and finding Open Educational Resources.

    Subject vocabularies are cross-institutional, often hierarchical lists with a taxonomy structure of terms defined within the subject area and used to describe coherent subject terms within a subject area or course based on competences or subject content.

    Subject vocabularies also ensure that the time spent on metadating Open Educational Resources is reduced and improve the quality of the metadata. The subject vocabularies also make it possible to analyse which Open Educational Resources are needed. 

    Advice and support 

    The Embedded Librarians and Advisors/AIP can provide you with advice and support on reusing Open Educational Resources. 

    There are various options for reuse. Always check the licence, which is usually added to the educational resource. If you do not find a licence, the resource cannot be reused without permission. If the resource is accessible online, linking is allowed. 

    - Creative Commons licences 

    Most Open Educational Resources have a Creative Commons (CC) licence. These licences make it easier to share, copy and edit a work, allowing for a more flexible approach to copyright. The creator of digital educational material can choose from 6 different Creative Commons licences. 



    Sharing Open Educational Resources

    The Embedded Librarians and Advisors/AIP support teaching staff in sharing Open Educational Resources. 

    When sharing edited or self-created Open Educational Resources, there are a few things to consider: 

    1. Choice of licence
      In order to share Open Educational Resources, the work must be provided with a Creative Commons licence. The general advice is to choose CC-BY (Attribution). This obliges a re-user to attribute the work. This ensures that it remains clear which experts and/or institutions have contributed to it.

    2. Choice of platform
      Open Educational Resources developed within the Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences are stored in SURFsharekit, the RUAS repository. From there, they are published in edusources. 

    3. Quality conditions
      Before Open Educational Resources can be shared, they must meet the following quality conditions:
      1. The material has a subject-specific quality
      2. The material has an open quality
      3. The material has a didactic-educational quality
      4. The material is readable and, if applicable, editable by others [language, form, content].
      5. The material is published in an adaptable format, so that others can easily reuse it
      6. The material complies with the copyright rules for Open Educational Resources
      7. The material has a licence with permission for reuse. Preferably a Creative Commons licence
      8. The material should be published in a repository and provided with metadata for easy retrieval

    4. Quality models
      Quality models contribute to assurance of the quality of the material. It is recommended that a quality labels be attached to resources that comply with a particular quality model, so that it is clear that a quality model has been used and which criteria are associated with it.

    5. Want to publish?
      Open Educational Resources can be uploaded in SURFsharekit or e-mailed to the library. The library will then upload it into SURFsharekit. 


    Types of Open Educational Resources

    Open Educational Resources

    Open Educational Resources

    Open Educational Resources (OER) are freely accessible; permission and conditions for reuse are often defined by licences. Examples of OER include:

    • Open Educational Resources (narrow definition): digital educational materials created or edited specifically for education and offered to students and teaching staff for use within teaching and to support the learning process
    • MOOC: Massive Open Online Courses
    • Open Textbooks
    • Open Access Publications
    • Web lectures
    • Open Creative Content
    • Open Courseware


    Open Science

    Open Science

    Open Science stands for increased collaboration and transparency at all stages of research. Open Science includes:

    • Open Access Publications: Online scientific journals and books
    • Open Data: Research data upon which further research can be build

    Infographics & support documents