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This Library Guide was created to help Brooklyn College faculty create Open Educational Resources (OER) for Brooklyn College students and beyond

(OER) Faculty Guide on Open Educational Resources: Create and Publish

Learn to create OER

The Process to Create OER

  1. Schedule a meeting with Associate Professor and Librarian Miriam Deutch and an OER Developer.
  2. Think about concepts and skills to be taught and ways to use images, video and audio to enhance lessons.
  3. Bring your course syllabus along with:
    • A rough plan and ideas of various types of content you wish to use (videos, audio, text, maps).
    • Citations and attribution of materials you want to use.
    • Electronic version of documents, files, images and videos you want included.
    • Lists and links to any sites or OER content you want included
  4. Together with an OER Developer, you will then choose which OER platform to use to publish your OER.
  5. Once finished your OER will be deposited into the CUNY institutional repository, Academic Works and also OpenEd CUNY, the CUNY microsite on OER Commons.


  • Since we have to adhere to copyright and fair use, OERs have licenses attached specifying how they may be used, reused, modified, and distributed. We therefore will need full citations or attributions to all content to ensure we are adhering correctly.  If you don't have full citations, we can work with you to discover them.
  • All documents and files need to be checked for accessibility and made accessible. We can help you create accessible content and provide Instructions on creating accessible content.
  • Instructors need to provide Alternative text (alt-text) of images to be used (especially for Art courses).

Infographic, created by Georgia State University (CC_BY_NC license) Download Transcript for A Quick Guide to Open Educational Resources (OERs) infographic.

How To Instructional Guide

Instruction OER homepage, click to go to guide.

How to Use the following platforms for OER creation

  • LibGuides
  • WordPress
  • Manifold
  • Scalar etc.

Learn how to create accessible content

  • WORD syllabi
  • PDF scans

Platforms: Basic Overview

OER Platform guide, click to go to guide homepage.

Overview of OER platforms, created by OER Developer Colin McDonald.

Platforms covered:

  1. Brooklyn College's WordPress
  2. CBOX WordPress
  3. CUNY Academic Commons WordPress
  4. LibGuides
  5. Manifold
  6. OER Commons
  7. Omeka
  8. Scalar
  9. Vocat
  10. Podcasts

General Digital Accessibility Workshop

General Digital Accessibility workshop, click to go to guide.

Topic: Digital Accessibility.
Learn: Accessibility Best Practices, Accessibility Design Dos and Don'ts, How to Create Accessible Content.
Creator: Amy Wolfe
Platform: LibGuides

Digital Toolbox for Teaching and Scholarship

Digital Toolbox for Teaching and Scholarship

There are many digital tools available which can be used in OERs as learning objects. The Digital Toolbox for Teaching and Scholarship, created by Brooklyn College Library's OER Developers, explores and evaluates some of the many digital tools available on the web.The toolbox also touches on accessibility and the ADA in digital scholarship and creation.

Digital Tool Topics Covered:

  1. Mapping
  2. Data visualization
  3. Annotation
  4. Publishing
  5. 3D Imaging
  6. Podcasts
  7. Accessibility

How to Designate a course Zero Textbook Cost


  • ZTC/OER course sections are those that do not require students to purchase a textbook or lab manual or other types of course materials
  • ZTC/OER designated course sections may include recommended books, library materials, or materials provided at no cost by the instructor. Students may be asked to print out materials, if the materials are provided free of charge.
  • ZTC/OER designated courses need only be free of cost for textbooks. ZTC designated courses may include costs for supplies.
  • Any course section meeting this criterion and listed in the CUNYfirst schedule of classes is eligible. This includes:
    • Fully Online
    • Hybrid
    • In Person
    • Online
    • Partially Online
    • Web-Enhanced
  • Course sections (classes) are assigned the ZTC/OER attribute independently. Courses may have ZTC/OER designated sections as well as non-ZTC-designated sections, depending on the materials chosen by each section’s instructor.
  • Courses that consist of linked sections (e.g., lecture + labs) may have the ZTC/OER designation applied to whichever sections do not require purchase of a book. A course may have a ZTC/OER designated lab section, but require a textbook for the lecture section, for example.


There are two ways to designate your course Zero Textbook Cost:

1.  You can do this by going to Akademos (the BC online bookstore):

  1.  Select “Adoptions not required.”
  2.  Then select the “OER/ZTC indicator.”
  3. Click “submit” to complete the course material submission.

NOTE:  This procedure will designate your course/section as Zero Textbook Cost in both CUNYfirst and Akademos.

screen grab showing how to make course ztc in academos.


2. Or you can speak peaking to your department chairperson or whomever enters the schedule in the eCSP program. Let them know your course section and that your course is Zero Textbook  Cost. The department person can enter OER in the attribute or they can put Zero Textbook cost in the notes and the Registrar will add the attribute in CUNYfirst.


Web Accessibility 101

Screengrab of canvas module, click to go to module.

Topic: Web Accessibility
Learn: Get a general understanding of why accessibility matters, general accessibility issues, legal accessibility issues, WCAG (Web Content Accessibility guidelines), P.O.U.R. accessibility principles and technical skills to create accessible content to increase and ensure accessibility, and improve the experience of adaptive technology users, people with non-apparent disabilities and the general population.
Creator: Amy Wolfe
Platform: Canvas for Teacher

Creative Commons Licensing

Attribution: [TheOGRepository] (2012, Sept. 5) Creating OER and Combining Licenses Part 1 Retrieved from:

Attribution: [TheOGRepository] (2012, Sept. 5) Creating OER and Combining Licenses Part 2 Retrieved from:

Fair Use

This document is a code of best practices designed to help those preparing OER to interpret and apply fair use under United States copyright law.

Cover image.

Fall 2019 OER Workshops

Fall 2019 Workshops:

Open Pedagogy: Students as Producers of Knowledge

As you reflect on the successes and challenges of the semester, mulling changes to readings, activities, and various pedagogical approaches, please consider this series of short pedagogical workshops being offered by the Brooklyn College CUNY Open Education Resources Initiative and the Center for Teaching and Learning. These workshops illustrate different ways of enacting the belief that students, as part of their learning, can be—and should be—not only consumers of knowledge but also producers of it. Each workshop will connect you with a technologist who can assist you and your students with the digital tools used to support various pedagogies.

We look forward to seeing you at one of these events!

-- Miriam Deutch, Director, Brooklyn College Open Education Resources
-- Madeline Fox, Director, Roberta S. Matthews Center for Teaching and Learning at Brooklyn College

Digital Discussions

November 7, 12-2pm
Room 412 Library

As digital course materials become more widely used in the classroom, instructors have the opportunity to take advantage of modes of engagement that aren’t feasible with print/analog texts. In particular, many freely-available digital annotation tools such as, Slack and CUNY Academic Commons Group Forum offer the potential for richer engagement with text, both individually and in groups. This workshop will feature a demonstration of courses utilizing digital annotation for textual and media content, the tools and structures that work in different classroom environments, and a discussion of the challenges and opportunities created by digital annotation.  

Teaching with Maps and Podcasts

DATE: November 14, 12-2pm
LOCATION: Room 412, Library

This workshop will introduce faculty to easy-to-use web-based mapping and podcasting tools for engaging student projects. Online mapping tools offer creative environments in which students can pull together multimedia elements into a shared, visual space. From representing locations found in literature to annotating historical sites and visualizing geospatial data, these tools can tie learning to real-world knowledge and enable the creation of scholarly resources that extend beyond the confines of the classroom.

Participants will also learn how to support student assignments based on the production of podcasts or audio recordings, with an emphasis on tools and methods for production and distribution. Recordings or podcasts offer students an opportunity to combine classroom learning with research, address a major analytical issue with a creative approach and learn about presenting information for a public audience (e.g public service announcements, a Brooklyn history tour, an art review, or a public policy discussion). This workshop will cover technical approaches to making podcasts and other types of audio for varied web and mobile use cases, resources and models to use for creative inspiration, and best practices for implementing successful audio assignments. 

Using Wikipedia as a Teaching Tool

DATE: November 19, 12-2pm
LOCATION: Room 412, Library

Wikipedia is becoming increasingly popular among educators as a teaching tool and as a platform where students can share their research and writing with a public audience. Faculty have discovered that writing for Wikipedia improves students’ critical thinking, writing, information and digital literacy as well as research skills. This workshop will provide an introduction to Wikipedia fundamental principles, policies, editing, best practices, and excellent resources available to support your assignment.

Open Publication Platforms

DATE: November 21, 12-2pm
LOCATION: Room 412, Library

Learn how to use Manifold, Pressbooks and Scalar open-source platforms that allow instructors to create textbooks, course materials and monographs as interactive online books that can also be easily exported and distributed as eBooks, PD, and print-on-demand formats.  You can create dynamic course materials by publishing custom editions of public domain texts and open educational resources (OER). Instructors can embed additional notes, files, images, videos, and interactive content into the text to create an interactive multimedia experience. Manifold and Scalar also support social reading through collaborative annotations that can deepen student engagement with OER course materials. Social annotation helps teach students how to engage in the digital public sphere. All platforms format well on phones and tablets as well as desktop computers.

Making Course Sites and Department Materials Accessible external link.

DATE: Tuesday, December 3, 12:30-2 pm
LOCATION: Room 241, 2nd floor of Library

What is accessibility and why does it matter? How can you make sure your course and department materials are accessible? Come to this accessibility workshop with Amy Wolfe, the Accessibility Librarian at the Office of Library Services and an OER Developer here at Brooklyn College and learn accessibly best practices and how to create accessible course sites, word documents, scanned pdfs, videos, and audio.