Archive for the ‘Open Ed Resources’ Category

Digital Public Library gets hip with the kids – Now on Pinterest

Friday, May 15th, 2015

First the DPLA is a free fantastic resource and they are wonderful people.

“The Digital Public Library of America brings together the riches of America’s libraries, archives, and museums, and makes them freely available to the world.”


Not content with just providing the resources, they are actively seeking to make their stuff even more accessible via platforms like Pinterest.

They also have apps including one for Historical cat pictures

cat app

Microsoft clip art being replaced by Bing

Friday, December 5th, 2014

“Microsoft has just announced that it’s killing off the last trace of clip art in its Office products, instead pointing users in need of imagery toward Bing Image Search. Why? Because most people are just getting their images online anyway.”

“The Bing image search built into Office is essentially the same one that’s built into its standard search engine, just with Creative Commons filters switched on by default to allow for commercial use.”

It doesn’t look like you have an option to add other search engines like Google .  If you want to find Creative Commons images using Google you have to change the usage rights in the Advance settings.

google search image

There’s some instructions here,

Free science resources from UNESCO

Friday, November 28th, 2014

World Library of Science

“UNESCO launched the UNESCO World Library of Science (WLoS), a newly created, free online science education resource for a global community of users. Developed through the joint efforts of UNESCO, Nature Education and Roche, the WLoS was created to give students around the world, especially those in disadvantaged regions, access to the latest science information as well as the opportunity to share their experiences and learning through discussion with their peers in a shared learning environment.

“Launched on the occasion of World Science Day for Peace and Development 2014, the WLoS is a science resource library stocked with over 300 top-quality articles, 25 eBooks, and over 70 videos from the publishers of Nature, the most cited scientific journal in the world. It is also a state-of-the-art digital platform that provides a community hub for learning. Users can join classes, build groups and connect with other learners.”

See the library at

(Shh, no one tell our Prime Minister, he doesn’t like science, it get’s in the way of his policies)

Look after your students – consider OER

Thursday, November 6th, 2014

“On one hand, faculty see open resources as just as good — if not better — than the products produced by traditional publishers. On the other, few faculty members have actually heard about OER.”

“The OER movement has sprung up in response to the rising cost of higher education, and aims to curb one of the additional fees that sometimes take students by surprise once they make it to campus — namely textbook prices. A study published this January, for example, found nearly half of surveyed students chose their courses based on textbook prices, and some simply avoided courses with expensive course materials.

Yet textbook costs hardly register among faculty members. Only 2.7 percent of the surveyed faculty named it the most important criterion for selecting teaching resources, coming in behind such factors as wide adoption, faculty ratings and learning management system support.”

If you’re a Monash person and don’t know where to start contact me and I’ll point you at a few resources.

Open Education Resources (a list of free stuff)

Wednesday, July 9th, 2014

If you have a bit of time and want to see what is out there in the land of OER this isn’t a bad list to start with.

At a practical level we still need topic specific gateways that pull from all these sites.  Until we do, finding relevant resources is going to be inconvenient for time poor academics.

OER links

Free science images courtesy of CSIRO

Wednesday, May 14th, 2014

Despite ongoing cuts from successive governments (including the latest $116 million) our Commonwealth research agency continues to make a positive contribution to Australia and the world.

See some of their good works here and here ‘ awesome things you never knew were invented by the csiro‘.

Dispensing into a microtitre plate as part of the bioremedia...
Dispensing into a microtitre plate as part of the bioremediation project

One thing they have done that we can all immediately benefit from is their Creative Commons image library.  Check it out if you are looking for free science related images.

Another free peer reviewed text from OpenStax – Principles of Economics

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2014

OpenStax is sponsored by Rice University and has a limited, but increasing collection of free digital texts.  Finally it has one for us in BusEco.


“OpenStax College offers students free textbooks that meet scope and sequence requirements for most courses. These are peer-reviewed texts written by professional content developers. Adopt a book today for a turnkey classroom solution or modify it to suit your teaching approach. Free online and low-cost in print, OpenStax College books are built for today’s student budgets. Stay informed through our newsletter, like us on Facebook, or tweet about @openstaxcollege.”

If you have used, or plan to use this text, let me know what you think of it.

New look for MERLOT (the free Ed resource provider gets a revamp)

Wednesday, November 13th, 2013

A big issue with OER has been finding the right resources.  MERLOT was designed to help.  Unfortunately the interface was  a bit clumsy, making it hard (but not quite so hard) to find the right resources.

Well the new site is an attempt to fix that.  Here’s a video about what you can do with the new Merlot

MERLOT is a free and open peer reviewed collection of online teaching and learning materials and faculty-developed services contributed and used by an international education community


A few more OER resources

Friday, November 8th, 2013


Here are a few more Open Education Resources to add to your list.

Open Educational Resources (OER): Resource Roundup (Edutopia)

“OER, a part of the global open content movement, are shared teaching, learning, and research resources available under legally recognized open licenses—free for people to reuse, revise, remix, and redistribute. Why are OER important? High-quality OER can save teachers significant time and effort on resource development and advance student learning inside and outside the classroom. Further, open sharing of resources has the potential to fuel collaboration, encourage the improvement of available materials, and aid in the dissemination of best practices. For more about the potential of OER, check out “Five-Minute Film Festival: Why Open Education Matters,” by Edutopia’s VideoAmy.”

Here are a few more

6 Open Educational Resources

Check the ‘Related Resources’ links on the left hand side for other good resources.

“There’s a subtle but steady shift happening in classrooms across the nation. More and more, schools are seeking efficient, cost-effective alternatives to using paper and supporting over-priced textbook companies. One way is by supporting technology in schools. Schools are seeking ways to upgrade and sustain wireless infrastructures and integrate mobile devices that broaden teaching and learning opportunities.”