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Open Educational Resources (OER): Open textbooks

What are open textbooks?

Open textbooks are OER compiled as textbooks that are typically authored by faculty and published on the web with the support of universities or commercial companies. Open textbooks are usually governed by Creative Commons licenses that allow users to read online, download, or print the book at no additional cost.

Open textbook permissions

The baseline permissions allow the users of open textbooks
to do the following:

  • to use the textbook without compensating the author 
  • to copy the textbook, with appropriate credit to the author
  • to distribute the textbook non-commercially 
  • to shift the textbook into another format (such as digital or print)

Some authors also grant additional rights such as:

  • to add, remove or alter content in the textbook, often on the condition that derivative works must have the same license‚Äč
  • to copy and distribute the textbook without giving credit to the author
  • to use the textbook commercially
Adapted from Open Textbook (Wikipedia)

Open textbook collections