Student Engagement

Creating, adapting and ultimately integrating OER into courses are ways to improve student engagement and academic success. For instance, an OER can be adapted to be more representative of learners and their contexts, for example, with more relevant examples. In fact, co-creation with students contributes to their representation in learning materials and active participation in knowledge creation.As the following videos explain, OER and the active participation of learners and their own learning are examples of open educational practices.

Video: Open Teaching

The following video discusses how open education is about more than OER and encompasses open educational practices.

Open Teaching (3:55) [CC BY-NC-SA]

Video Transcript

This second video elaborates on what happens when students are engaged in their own learning, which is a core principle of open education.

Seven Things That Happen When Students Own Their Learning (1:41)

Video Transcript

Renewable, Not Disposable Assignments

Renewable assignments, unlike assignments that are only reviewed by the teacher and then discarded, encourage learners to become more engaged in the knowledge that future students will not only benefit but also contribute to it.

Many assignments given in post-secondary institutions are what David Wiley calls “disposable.” Renewable assignments, on the other hand, add value beyond earning a mark — they provide resources that are useful and usable by others, whether other students in the course or the public. Examples  include students creating notes or demonstrations for other students in the same course (and possibly also posted publicly for others), students editing articles on Wikipedia or an institutional wiki site like the UBC Wiki, and students producing research that can be used by a community group. Even those assignments that might otherwise be “disposable” can be made renewable by sharing them with other students in a course and, if the student agrees, publicly.

For such work to be truly “renewable” though, it should be openly licensed to allow others to not only view it, but to revise and reuse it for their own purposes.


Open Teaching (Teacher-Student Lens)
Open Collaboration (Student-OER Lens)
Open Assessment (Teacher-OER Lens)


Here are two examples of OER co-created with students:

Activity: Making Assessments Renewable

Reflect on how you could change one of your assessments to make it renewable. Share your thoughts in a Padlet.


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