Digital Scholar Bytes: Open Education Week

Open Education Week (March 4-8) is “an annual celebration and opportunity for those working in Open Education to actively share their achievements and learn about what others are achieving worldwide.” Open Education is a part of the larger open access or open source movement whose goal is to create more access to and collaboration with information.

A tablet leaned against a stack of books

Open Educational Resources (OER) are free or openly accessible learning materials, which includes textbooks, lesson plans, videos, and even full courses. They are written by faculty and subject matter experts. The licenses on OER allows you the flexibility to adapt and edit the materials to suit your course and learning outcomes for your students. With the immediate access provided by OER, students can get started using the materials right from the start of class and refer back to the material long after they may have sold back a traditional textbook.

Increasing Student Retention and Engagement

Open Pedagogy is a way of looking at pedagogy and courses that would invite students into the production and creation of information and not just the consumption of it. Open Pedagogy makes use of Open Access and OER materials and looks at assignments where students add to the knowledge openly available by creating or editing course material or editing Wikipedia pages. Learn more about Open Pedagogy from the Open Pedagogy Notebook.

See all the events that are a part of Open Education Week here.

Open Education at Catholic University

Screenshot of the filters on the search results page of SearchBox with the "Open Access" filter selected

The Library’s SearchBox searches our catalog and many databases at once, including Open Access databases such as the Open Textbook Library and the newly added LibreTexts for OER and the Directory of Open Access Journals for Open Scholarship. To see Open Access materials specifically in your search results, use the filters in the left column of the search results page.

To find more OER and other openly available media, see our OER Research Guide. This guide has more information about Open Education and recommendations of more places to locate and start using OER for your courses. Please also don’t hesitate to reach out to your subject librarian for assistance.

Additionally Open@WRLC works to investigate and determine how the Washington Research Library Consortium can incentivize and support faculty in the creation and adaptation of Open Textbooks. You can see upcoming workshops and recordings of past events to learn how to get involved in reviewing Open Textbooks and learn from fellow faculty members in how they are making use of OER in their courses.

The deadline for the 2024 Open@WRLC Course Transformation stipend has been extended until Friday, March 8, 2024 11:59. Awardees will receive $2000 to convert a course from traditional, commercial textbooks to OER for either the Fall 2024 or Spring 2025 semester. Get more information and apply at



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