Refresher – OER Search Strategies

Refresher: OER Search Strategies and Tips

The Ontario Extend Curator Module encourages you to  adopt a savvy search system when you are looking for current, high-quality OER. This refresher offers some additional search strategies and tips. This first video (two minutes) will help you get specific with your search for OER. It covers:

    • Narrowing your search by looking for weekly topics
    • Using synonyms to improve results
    • Starting your search with OER repositories


Watch “Searching for OERs: Where to Start” on YouTube
Transcript – Searching for OERs: Where to Start


Watch this next video (three minutes) to learn more about OER repositories and how to search them for openly licensed material.


Watch “OER Repositories: Search Tips” on YouTube
Transcript – OER Repositories: Search Tips

Searching for OER — 10 Tips

  1. Shop around and keep coming back! There is no “one-stop shop” for OER. Access different repositories (and continue checking because they are always growing and being updated).
  2. Switch up your search terms (use synonyms and broader, or narrower, terms).
  3. Use Boolean Operators (the words “and,” “or” and “not” can boost the power of your search). Check out the Curator Module Adopting a Savvy Search System for more information.
  4. Use the repository filters (i.e. filter for licence and/or material type, etc.)
  5. Look for smaller pieces of content (topics, chapters, ancillary materials, etc.).
  6. Pay attention to the open licence (remember, you can always ask for permissions beyond the licence).
  7. Keep track of information.
  8. If you can’t find an OER in the repositories, try searching Google!
  9. Know when to stop searching! Sometimes the perfect OER just doesn’t exist. You might need to think about creating this component — or using a library resource.
  10. Ask a librarian to help! Librarians are a wealth of knowledge!



Icon for the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License

Extending Into the Open Copyright © 2022 by Paula Demacio; Alissa Bigelow; Tricia Bonner; and Shauna Roch is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

Share This Book