Keeping an Eye on License with OER

oercommonsAs you’re conducting your search for materials, whether through OER repositories like OER Commons or simply using a search engine, don’t forget to check licenses!  A common mistake is to assume that freely-accessible online content is up for grabs.  This couldn’t be further from the truth.  It is vital to remember that the defining characteristic of an open resource is that it is explicitly licensed for certain kinds of reuse and modification.  /Paragraph  Don’t fear, though!  There are not only a number of helpful filter tools built into most OER databases, but Google advanced search allows you select the kinds of permissions you’re looking for in your content.  See this video on YouTube for a quick explanation of how to use Google advanced search. /Paragraph  Lastly, we’d like to add that if you’re having trouble locating the license, look to the website’s copyright information (which is often at the bottom of the page).  If all you see is a little c with a circle around it (©) and the name of the publisher, it’s all rights reserved.  If you don’t see any license information at all, it’s all rights reserved.  However, if you see a little Creative Commons symbol and a link, you are good to go.  Be sure to note which license you’re dealing with, of course.

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