Lists of Free Open Education Resources Compiled by Ilene Frank and Barrett Havens

Open educational resources (OER) are teaching and learning materials freely available online for use by anyone.
Some materials are truly open access in that they can be re-mixed and re-used by anyone.
Some materials may need to be be accessed by specific devices (iTunes U) or used only as is - no changes allowed. Check licenses even for those materials labelled as OER.

Free courseware, textbooks, and other course materials

Free courses - open courses


Sources of free ebooks and articles

Sources of free/public domain short stories

Resources by Subject:
Online Business & Management Journals and Reference Books


List of OER search tools - Tidewater Community College

DOI (Digital Object Identifier) Do you have a doi - a digital object identifier - for an article? Find out if the article is available open access by using OADOI.ORG
Try "OA paper version lookup by DOI" :

One of the world's most voluminous search engines especially for academic open access web resources from over 2,000 sources. Use the ADVANCED search tab and scroll down and make sure that "open access" is checked and "uncheck" non-open access and "uncheck" unknown.

Mason OER MetaFinder (from George Mason University)
Use to find open textbooks and other OER materials from sites ranging from OpenStax to Project Gutenberg

"The mission of CORE (COnnecting REpositories) is to aggregate all open access research outputs from repositories and journals worldwide and make them available to the public..."

JURN Search tool for open access content (Includes links to some sites such that require free registration)

"A [rather small] search engine that returns OER including images

Scroll down to "refine your search" and leave journals and books checked - and check "open access articles only"

Virtual Learning Resources Center VLRC
Find magazine articles

Semantic Scholar
covers computer and neuroscience. No obvious way to limit resuts to open access only. Adding *.pdf to search terms seems to work.
Sample search
user interface design
number of results
Computer Science (538,603)
Neuroscience (13,252)

user interface design *.pdf
number of results
Computer Science (30,123)
Neuroscience (427)

Browser Extensions

Open Access Button (search engine - and browser extension available)

Unpaywall (browser extension) from oadoi If you are doing a search and find a research article, the Unpaywall icon will turn green indicating that there is an open access copy of the article available. Click on the icon for access.

Other Guides and Tutorials:

Library Research Guides

Grand Valley State University

Humboldt State University

Lansing Community College



University of Mass

California State University. Affordable Learning Solutions

Commonwealth of Learning (COL). A learning module:

The OER Landscape - How to Find OER?

Content Without Borders (from Pearson)

Creative Commons

Finding OER. Creative Commons

DiscoverEdA search prototype developed by Creative Commons

Georgia: Affordable Learning - GALILEO search tool, information about including library resources, finding open textbooks, etc. Affordable Textbooks

OAD: Open Access Directory

A compendium of information about open access hosted at

Graduate School of Library and Information Science at Simmons College

OER Africa.Find OER

Lists repositories and search tools in African countries.

OER Commons.

Find course related materials

OPEN (Open Professionals Education Network. Find OER (Tends to be course related material).

April 8, 2017:

De Gruyter makes some material available for free on occasion. Instructions for getting to some material – some articles and university press books available for free from March 1 – December 30, 2017. This program of materials is called the “Rights, Action and Social Responsibility” initiative:
I registered at the de Gruyter site at and picked password
I got the email back from de Gruyter confirming my registration and clicked on the link to confirm that it was me.
Then… try logging in to My DeGruyter and scroll down to the information about those free resources

De Gruyter and Publisher Partners support fact-based analysis
Launch of “Rights, Action and Social Responsibility” initiative

Then… scroll to the bottom of THAT screen (URL )
And I got a token by doing MORE registration waaay at the bottom of that web page about the free material
THEN I got email back with a “token”
Then I got information about how to use the token
Then.. I got logged on My DeGruyter with my username/password per that first registration - and then put in that token number somewhere
I had clicked on the title of this book from Harvard University Press Does Ethics Have a Chance in a World of Consumers?
And after all that, it finally said "free access" ! I could have downloaded a chapter at a time
The token for is good for that collection from March 1 – December 2017.
Apparently de Gruyter provides some free access to their materials off and on. I spotted something about a program they have calls “10 tokens” that will let users download 10 items – It’s one token per chapter if it’s a book. So I suppose by signing up with them, I will get email once in a while about other free material.

This collection of resources was developed by Barret Havens and Ilene Frank to assist course development for University of the People. Send suggestions to Ilene Frank ilene.frank at
Last reviewed 2016. Some additions made in 2017