Global sharing. Affordable Learning

Open Educational Resources

From vision to reality

Wayne Mackintosh


Nurturing sustainable futures

There is no form of educational delivery more cost-effective, scalable and sustainable than open education


OER Foundation

Defining OER

OER (Open Educational Resources) are defined by UNESCO as learning, teaching, and research materials in any format and medium that:

  • reside in the public domain or released under an open license
  • that permits no-cost access,
  • plus permissions for others to re-use, re-purpose, adapt, and redistribute.

Towards the UNESCO OER Recommendation

2002 OER was coined at UNESCO’s Forum on the Impact of Open Courseware for Higher Education in Developing Countries
2012 Paris Declaration
2017 Ljubljana Declaration from awareness to action
2019 UNESCO OER Recommendation adopted by member states

UNESCO OER Recommendation

  1. Build the capacity of stakeholders to find, re-use, creat, adapt and share OER;
  2. Develop supportive policy for OER;
  3. Ensure inclusive and equitable access to quality OER;
  4. Nurture the creation of sustainability models for OER; and
  5. Facilitate international cooperation in OER. 

The five action areas

(Note monitoring requirements targeting consolidated report for the 42nd General conference (Autumn 2023))

How does OERu work?

Gears by Pexels dedicated to the Public Domain under Creative Commons CC0 

Unsatisfied demand for HE

 100 Million additional places by 2025

Crowd by James Cridland licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic

BIG vision for a small charity

But what if ...

Institutions assembled only 2 courses from OER

Agreed to provide assessment services for formal credit?

OERu concept


OERu qualifications

Graduation by paseidon dedicated to the public domain under Creative Commons CC0

OERu micro-courses

2019 Commonwealth of Learning Award for Excellence in Distance Education Materials

Transnational Micro-credentialing


See announcement on microcredentials by New Zealand Minister of Tertiary Education, Skills & Employment

Micro-credentials for credit

Role of the project manager

Initiating a project

Planning a project

Executing and closing a project

Introduction to project management

CertHE Business

Transcript credit

Green paint by JTPatriot dedicated to the public domain under Creative Commons CC0

Sustainable technology


Conservation light bulb by Alexas Fotos dedicated to the Public Domain under Creative Commons CC0

Learning complex skills


Can you learn to ride a bike by reading a book?

Authoring and publishing technology

Author on WikiEducator

Outline of wiki pages

Publish course web site





OERu technology wheel

OERu learning environment


Course web site

Distributed interaction tools

Live course feed

RSA course remix

From vision to reality

Many higher education institutions believe in expanding affordable access to learning through their community service missions, but what may be difficult for institutions to deliver individually becomes possible through active participation in the OERu network.

Seagull sky flight by maleifl dedicated to the public domain under Creative Commons CC0


WITS OER session - June 2021

By Wayne Mackintosh

WITS OER session - June 2021

Open Educational Resources

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