We are always happy to see Saylor Academy courses adopted and used by teachers, faculty, institutions and organizations outside our own offices. This page provides guidance to those interested in building or reusing online courseware. You can also search our materials, browse our textbook shelves, or get in touch.
While the goal of the Saylor Academy is to provide as much educational material as freely and openly as possible (we default to the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license), we also try to present our students and users with the best and most accurate information. Sometimes, this means using resources that are protected by a variety of licenses and copyright agreements.
The guide in this section provides an explanation of the various licensing you may encounter throughout our courses or in your search for OER more generally.
Additionally, the following videos created by Creative Commons will help to explain the philosophy behind, and application of, Creative Commons Licenses.
A Shared Culture by Jesse Dylan is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike (CC BY-NC-SA) license. You can find the original version here.
Wanna Work Together? by Creative Commons is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license. You can find the original version here.
We created the video below to highlight some of the best available sources for finding OER, including some key features and best uses for various repositories. You can also jump directly to the sections covering the different repositories, by selecting the links below the embed.
In addition to simply allowing for access or redistribution of a Saylor Academy course, the CC-BY license applied to our site is meant to encourage an iterative process of building upon and bettering our open courseware. While our courses have been developed by distinguished faculty, and put through a Peer Review process, we understand academia is not a one size fits all world. The following tutorial therefore is meant to guide you in what aspects of a Saylor course as available for you to adapt.
While we certainly believe that our courses hold up to scrutiny, we also know that ours are just one possible way a subject can be taught. For those of you who would like to develop your own OER-based courses, we’ve compiled lists of OER materials by subject. These are the same guides we provide to our professors at the outset of every course design process.
As the previous guides suggest, we are pretty big on “open” here at Saylor. Utilizing OER and making our own courses openly licensed are two big components of our larger course design philosophy. However, there are plenty of more granular and nitty-gritty steps to course design, and we are happy to share some best practices, as created by our own Education Project Manager, Tanner Huggins. Whether you are developing your very first open online course, or you are a seasoned pro, this guide may be of use — or will at least give you an insight as to how Saylor does things.
If you’ve familiarized yourself with what open really means, and are comfortable with how to adapt and remix Saylor courses, and/or where to find great OER to make your own unique open online course, then you probably need to think about how to make your course(s) available in an openly accessible environment. Important factors to consider include ease of access for students (with no costs); cost to you as a teacher to publish a course (ideally free); and features available to enhance your content, as well as the overall learning and teaching experience.