Getting to Know Open Education Resources (OERs)

Quick Start: Know the Jargon (Terms & Definitions)

Term Definition
Course Delivery Terminology
Blended learning
(“Flipped classroom”)
Blended learning is a combination of both face-to-face and online instruction. For example, a student alternates studying in class, with studying independently using Internet-based resources and spaces.
Face-to-face Face-to-face instructional typically occurs in a classroom and that is bound by time, space, and place.
(Learning Management System)
An LMS is a software application for the administration, documentation, tracking, reporting and delivery of educational courses or training programs.
Licensing & Permissions Terminology
Copyright Copyright means the sole right to produce or reproduce a work or a substantial part of it in any form.
Fair dealing / Fair use Fair dealing is a user right contained in the Copyright Act (Canada). Fair dealing allows one to copy from a copyrighted work, without the copyright owner’s permission, if the copy is research, private study, education, parody, satire, criticism, review or news reporting; and, the dealing (use) is fair.
(Open Educational Resource)
Open Educational Resources are “teaching, learning, and research resources that reside in the public domain or have been released under an intellectual property license that permits their free use and repurposing by others.An OER gives instructors and students the legal permission to engage in the “5Rs”.[1]

An OER is:

  • Free to retain – you can make, own and control copies of the content. E.g. download, duplicate, store and manage.
  • Free to reuse – you can use the content in a wide range of ways. E.g. in a class, on a website.
  • Free to revise – you can adapt, modify or alter the content itself.
  • Free to remix – you can combine the original or revised content with other material to create something new
  • Free to redistribute – you can share copies of the original content, your revisions or your remixes with others.

OERs include full courses, course materials, modules, textbooks, streaming videos, tests, software, and any other tools, materials, or techniques used to support access to knowledge.”[2]

Open license  This is the “intellectual property license that permits their free use and repurposing by others” that defines a resource as “open”.For example, all new open textbooks added to the BC Open Textbook collection are released under a Creative Commons CC-BY 4.0 International license. With this open license, you are free to:

  • Share — copy and redistribute the material in any medium or format
  • Adapt — remix, transform, and build upon the material

for any purpose, even commercial.

Public domain The state of belonging or being available to the public as a whole, and therefore not subject to copyright.



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OER Toolkit for Trades Instructors Copyright © 2017 by Camosun College is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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