OER – what CC license should we use?

A question which came up at the OER Ideas Factory session was, would we (the institution, mangers of the OER Repository Service) recommend a specific CC License?

I’ve been looking around, and emailed the HELF list. It looks like the simpler the CC license the better. This is for a number of reasons, firstly, we want the OERs to be used (otherwise, what is the point) hence the less barriers to use the better. Secondly, they need to be policed. So, a very practical recommendation for our OER project is;

At the discussion phase with staff (when we are getting the release forms), we suggest the default option of;

Where, people can

  • to Share — to copy, distribute and transmit the work
  • to Remix — to adapt the work

under the following conditions

  • Attribution — You must attribute the work in the manner specified by the author or licensor (but not in any way that suggests that they endorse you or your use of the work).

    What does “Attribute this work” mean?

    The page you came from contained embedded licensing metadata, including how the creator wishes to be attributed for re-use. You can use the HTML here to cite the work. Doing so will also include metadata on your page so that others can find the original work as well.
  • Share Alike — If you alter, transform, or build upon this work, you may distribute the resulting work only under the same or similar license to this one.

Given we’ll need to explain what this means for the creator of the OER, it will start the conversation about if they (the creator) is happy. It might also identify they are not, consequently it is not appropriate as an OER.


  1. Julian Prior

    Andy, I wonder whether it is worth exploring the Non-Commercial aspect of the CC license too? Putting myself in the shoes of somebody new to OER they might feel more comfortable about sharing their resources if they know that someone is not going to nick their resources and sell them to fund that boat on the French Riviera . . .

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