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Open Resources and Creative Commons

This guide lists sources for finding content that you can use and adapt without worrying about copyright or fees.


The Creative Commons is a source for shared media of all types. The concept is simple: Copyright holders decide which types of uses they allow for their works.  Then they release their works into "the commons" with licenses indicating permissible types of uses. Creative Commons licenses combine these terms:


   CC -  Creative Commons

   BY - use requires attribution to the author 

   ND - no derivative uses 

   NC - no commercial uses

   SA - "Share Alike", or any person who uses the CC work to create a new work must then assign a CC license to the resulting work.  Thus, the original work will remain in the commons. 


CC0   CC0 - the creator has relinquished all rights to the work to the fullest extent possible


Open Educational Resources (OER) are a wide umbrella of online educational media that can be freely used and shared. OER include textbooks, journals, images, video, audio clips, data, software, entire courses, syllabi, and more! Most frequently, they have Creative Commons licenses.