Open Educational Resources Support Program

This program provides funding and in-kind expertise to support University of Guelph instructors interested in creating, adapting, and adopting open textbooks or other Open Educational Resources (OER). The Program is funded by the library and managed by the Open and Affordable Course Content Task Force. In-Kind support is provided by the McLaughlin Library, the Office of Teaching & Learning, and Open Learning and Educational Support.

To learn more about the basics of OER including what they are, where to find them, and how to get started see Open Educational Resources.

Prior works supported by the OER Support Program

2022 / 2023

  • ENGG*1100: Engineering & Design I (creation) - John Donald
  • MATH*2200: Advanced Calculus I (creation) - Kimberly Levere
  • PSYC*1100, PSYC2190, and AHSS1170 (Guelph-Humber): Developmental Psychology (creation) - Michael Mueller

2021 / 2022

  • CIS*2430: Object Oriented Programming   (creation) - Judi McCuaig
  • GEOG*1350: Earth: Hazards and Global Change (adaption) - Jaclyn Cockburn and Laura Brown
  • OAGR*2070: Introduction to Organic Agriculture (creation) - Hida Manns
  • MGMT*1000: Introduction to Business (adaption) - Kathleen Rodenburg
  • MGMT*3020: Corporate Social Responsibility (creation) - Ruben Burga

Support for OER projects

Recognizing that instructor needs will vary depending on a myriad of factors such as size of class, materials available, teaching approach, and other factors, the program offers different levels of support. For the purpose of determining the level of support available through the OER support program, projects are assigned to one of three categories: creation, adaptation, or adoption. Applicants are encouraged to apply for the level of support that most closely aligns with the OER project they will be undertaking.


Purpose: To support an instructor in the creation of an OER for a specific course.
Support: Between $4,000 - $8,000

Examples include (but are not limited to):

  • Creation of a new open textbook or lab manual to replace an existing commercial textbook / lab manual
  • Creation of an open textbook to address a lack of OER in a particular subject area
  • Development of a set of open modules to replace a standard commercial textbook
  • Creation of classroom engagement materials such as quizzes for use with existing open software


Purpose: To support an instructor in the adaptation of an existing OER for a specific course.
Support: Between $500 - $4,000

Examples include (but are not limited to):

  • Adaptation of an existing open textbook/OER to replace a standard commercial textbook (or other fee-based resource)
  • Adaptation of open-source classroom engagement or quizzing software to replace commercial versions that students currently pay to access
  • Development of a well-curated series of open resources from multiple sources to replace a standard commercial textbook
  • Development of ancillary resources (ex. test bank, modules, simulations) associated with an existing open textbook/OER in order to adopt it for a specific course


Purpose: To support an instructor in the adoption of an existing OER for a specific course.
Support: In-kind support only

Examples include (but are not limited to):

  • Adoption of an existing open textbook/OER to replace a standard textbook (or other fee-based resource)
  • Adoption of open-source classroom engagement or quizzing software to replace commercial versions that students currently pay to access
  • Minor alteration of an existing OER (ex. changing US measurements to Canadian, replacing a few figures)

Applying for support

Applications for the OER Support Program are currently closed. Calls for funding applications will be released in March of each year along with a timeline of important dates for the program. At that time, applicants will be invited to complete an online application form.

Evaluation criteria

Applications will be evaluated based on:

  • Clarity of the project description
  • Specificity of budget details
  • Anticipated impact of the completed project in terms of:
    • Number of students and courses that will benefit from the use of the OER
    • Plans for re-using the OER in subsequent semesters
    • Potential for re-use of the OER in other courses, including those at other institutions

Amounts granted for the creation and adaptation levels will be based on the scope and complexity of the project being proposed.

  1. Include contributions by undergraduate and / or graduate students, especially if the contributions foster experiential learning opportunities
  2. Involve collaboration with others at U of G or other institutions
  3. Result in the creation of an OER in a subject not currently well-represented by existing open content
  4. Include plans for adding ancillary materials such as question banks or instructor manuals
  5. Include plans for sustaining and updating the OER over time
  6. Use Pressbooks open publishing software (if feasible given the nature of the project) (provided through McLaughlin Library)

Additional funding sources

Applicants may be able to supplement the funding secured through this program by applying for support from other sources such as:

If applicants have additional questions or require more clarification, they are encouraged to reach out to the Open and Affordable Course Content Task Force at

In-kind support available

In-kind support is available for all OER projects while funding is only available for creation and adaptation projects. Instructors undertaking OER adoptions are encouraged to apply to the program in order to request the specific in-kind supports they require.

Beyond the OER Support Program, we offer year-round support for all OER projects. Book an appointment to learn more about how we can help.

Types of in-kind support

McLaughlin Library
  • Assistance with identifying additional openly licensed resources
  • Assistance with identifying course readings from the library collection which are no-cost for students
  • Advice on copyright requirements and Creative Commons licensing
  • Accessibility audit of existing and final OER, including any adaptations
  • Instruction in selected software applications to create images, infographics, videos, or recordings
  • Access to and support for Pressbooks open publishing software
  • Assistance with identifying appropriate repositories and requirements for future access
Office of Teaching and Learning
  • Support for course redesign
  • Assistance with the creation of learning outcomes at the resource or unit level
  • Expertise and best practices for creation of educational content
Open Learning and Educational Support
  • Instructional design expertise
  • Assistance with identification of open source or institutionally supported educational technology alternatives
  • Technical support for implementation of educational technology

Responsibilities of grant recipients

All successful recipients must agree to the following conditions:

  • All funded adaptation and creation projects must be completed within 18 months of the application’s approval
  • Ensure the OER are made accessible and available for sharing under a Creative Commons license
  • Share the resource(s) openly by depositing the final version and its source files (in an editable format) in an appropriate subject-based or interdisciplinary repository
  • Allow the OER to be promoted by McLaughlin Library and other campus units
  • Complete a brief final report within six months of the project’s completion (template to be provided)

Copyright and licensing

Copyright ownership of new content created in the fulfillment of these grant requirements will be retained by the author/creator and will be determined in keeping with the intellectual property provisions of the UGFA Collective Agreement (for UGFA members) and/or the University of Guelph Intellectual Property Policy (for non-UGFA members).

It is expected that all content created will be shared under a Creative Commons (CC) license. Note that the assignment of a CC license does not impact the creator’s copyright ownership of their work.