After you have found an OER textbook for your subject area, you will want to evaluate it. Evaluating an OER is not too different from evaluating any textbook, but there are some special considerations to take into account. Below is a checklist to help with the process:
1. Quality of Content
2. Course Alignment
3. Technical Quality
Once you have selected your OER textbook and discussed it with you program colleagues as needed, you will have just a few more decisions to make:
1. In what format will you host the textbook on your Moodle shell? Remember, you can usually provide multiple formats, such as online texts and pdfs.
2. Do you want students to be able to download the textbook in parts? Pdf files can be made for each section
For further assistance, consult this BCcampus Quick Guide to OER Textbook Adoption or reach out to an MCNY librarian.
The truth is that OER textbooks are made not only to be shared, but also to be adapted to the needs of particular, courses, instructors, students.
You may find that you want to make a text more relevant to your students by changing examples or adding extra materials. This practice is called "localization" and is a cornerstone of OER pedagogy. However, to adapt an OER textbook in this manner, please note that if the Creative Commons license is Attribution-NoDerivatives (CC BY-ND), then it cannot be adapted at al. Also important, if the Creative Commons license is Attribution-ShareAlike (CC BY-SA) or Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike (CC BY-NC-SA), then the adaptation of the work must bear the same license, with the same permissions.
You may also want simply to assign parts of an OER and/or to supplement the textbook with other materials. There are many different kinds of materials you can use for this:
It's important to remember that linking is not copying! A simple link in your Moodle shell to an outside source -- whether or not it is copyrighted-- is a perfectly legitimate way to use material published online.
One note: Always remember to attribute the sources you use. Here is a tool to help with attribution to OER sources: Open Attribution Builder.