Defining re-use

The term re-use can take different meanings, depending upon the context in which it is used. When it comes to Open Educational Resources (OER) there is not a single definition either. For transparency, partners of the ExplOERer project agreed that a common definition should apply to all project activities.

We envision OER as sourced, used, manipulated and re-created as they are reused for learning. In this way open resources provide a substrate that can be reused by anyone, anywhere to pursue their learning goals in education, at work and through everyday activities. More precisely our view of resource re-use emphasizes a) revision b) remix and c) co-creation, thus has moved from ‘read-only’ to ‘read-write’ to ‘read-write-remix’ to ‘co-create’.

While re-use of OER requires appropriate skills, practices and tools, lack of legal barriers is the necessary precondition. Therefore resources need to be made available under a free license (as defined by the Open definition) or be available in the public domain.