Open Educational Resources: Question of quality

Assessing quality

From textbooks, and ready-made lesson plans, educational rubrics, study guides, videos and virtual simulations, the resources below might enhance and facilitate your teaching. It is important to remember that the suggested resources might still need to be evaluated to determine if they are suitable for use with respect to quality and accuracy of the content, currency, alignment with course objectives, suitability for students’ level, accessibility and ease of use, and last but foremost if they are licensed for open use, i.e. if they are in the Public Domain, covered by a Creative Commons licence that allows for educational reuse, or covered by the CC licence allowing for modification and adaption.

All resources, whether they are Open Educational Resources or those which require by individuals or institutions, require assessment to check they meet your teaching needs. Similar criteria students apply for evaluating information could be applied to assessing OERs. 

Authority Accuracy Currency Relevance

Authority - who is the author or creator of the information and what are their credentials? 

  • Is the author of the information clearly stated?
  • Is the author an established expert in this field of study, have they published widely on the topic? 
  • Is the author affiliated with a University or other institution, organisation or company?
  • Who is the publisher and why have they published this information? 
  • Is the OER located on a reputable website or from a reputable organisation? 

Accuracy - is the information accurate? 

  • What evidence is included to support the author's claims? 
  • Are the facts and figures presented referenced? Is a reference list or bibliography included? 

Currency - how up to date is the information? 

  • When was the information written or published? How often has it been updated? When was it last updated?
  • Is the resource up to date for the topic?

Relevance - will the information be useful for your teaching requirement? 

  • Does the information cover my topic in sufficient depth? It the resource pitched at the required level?
  • Is the resource accessible and easy for students to use?

Resources for evaluating OERs

Open Education in Practice: Integrating OER Into Your Course

OER repositories with quality checks