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The European Commission defines Open Education as “a way of carrying out education, often using digital technologies. Its aim is to widen access and participation to everyone by removing barriers and making learning accessible, abundant, and customisable for all”. Opening up education is an important item on the European and Irish policy agenda. 

Open Educational Resources (OERs) are digital resources used in the context of teaching and learning that have been released by the copyright holder under an open licence permitting their use and re-purposing by others. OERs reduce costs and barriers for students while making learning easier and better. Studies have found a direct link between OERs and higher test scores, lower failure rates, and lower drop-out rates. 

OER form part of ‘Open Solutions’, alongside Free and Open Source software (FOSS), Open Access (OA), Open Data (OD) and crowdsourcing platforms. 

Pillar at University of Galway 

The Library promotes and supports the use of OERs. This is an emerging and developing area but some of the activities we engage in are: 

Open Education supporters are also active in the Open Scholarship Community Galway.