OER World Map

Funded by

Open educational Resources for Biologists In Teaching And Learning (OeRBITAL)



The UK Centre for Bioscience has gained valuable experience through the Open Educational Resources (OER) pilot project (subject strand) to produce OERs for supporting undergraduate teaching, specifically to support the key areas of Practical Work and Fieldwork in the Biosciences.

For our OER Phase 2 project we wish to develop and establish the essential practices with practitioners to optimise the use and re-use of such resources. This project will recruit selected members of the Bioscience community as ‘Discipline Consultants’ (DC) acting as discovery agents and curators for collections in their discipline interest across all undergraduate levels, and postgraduate where possible.

Aims and Objectives

To seek to gather resources for all areas of Bioscience learning and teaching, identified by specialist practitioners acting as curators of resources, based on evidence of need. The aim is to support a further change in culture for the production of learning materials to encourage re-use and redevelopment, sharing the new outputs back into the original discipline pool.

The objective is to increase awareness of the OER approach in the Bioscience and establish examples across a range of disciplines by providing examples of resources which can, if necessary, also be de-constructed into a collection of independent learning objects.

Project methodology

We will recruit 8-12 selected members as ‘Discipline Consultants’ (DC) to act as discovery agents and curators for collections in their discipline interest across all undergraduate levels, and postgraduate where possible.

If resources come to light that are quasi-OERs i.e. OERs by nature but have not been declared as such, probably because the provider was not aware of the licence process, then we will seek to have these added to the collection if we can obtain OER release with zero to minimal effort.

We will recruit 2-3 learning technologists to work with the resources to assist adaption in a new context or provide example enhancements.

Anticipated outputs and outcomes


A wide range of resources, tagged with appropriate metadata to assist discovery.

Academic narrative of resource collections;

Resource wiki as a community owned ‘hub’ to gather OERs;

Project reports;

Project Publications and events


A community of practice (COP) in the acquisition and use of OER materials in the Biosciences;

Individual practitioners identifying the suitable resources for OER release who can be lead contacts;

IPR clarity on the use of Open Educational Resources for the Biosciences;

Raised awareness of OER in HE;

Improved engagement with the use of repositories;

Sustainability issues for OER in Biosciences e.g. reward and recognition for OER production.

Technology / Standards used

Open Standards will be adopted as far as reasonably possible.

Our collection will be implemented using an open source MediaWiki as the ‘hub’ for the curation of the collection. We have also decided to consider a role for WordPress due to the further syndication opportunities it provides.

We will make direct use of the JorumOpen repository to avoid the duplication of resources, and ensure RSS feeds (customized through YahooPipes and Feed43) are available to further surface resources, both into and out of the collection.

We will utilise appropriate web 2.0 services and incorporate social bookmarking services e.g. Delicious.com, to discover further users of similar resources.

This project outline originally appeared on the JISC website as archived at https://www.webarchive.org.uk/wayback/archive/20140614104935/http://www.jisc.ac.uk/whatwedo/programmes/elearning/oer2/oerbital.aspx under a CC-BY-ND-NC license.