OER Commons Green: Aggregating Best-in-Class Green Open Educational Resources


OER Commons Green: Aggregating Best-in-Class Green Open Educational Resources

Madalina Ungur & Vassilis Protonotarios

Agro-Know Technologies


Dedicated to sustainability and resource conservation, OER Commons Green was developed by The Institute for the Study of Knowledge Management in Education (ISKME) in collaboration with Agro-Know Technologies (Greece). Since 2010, a team of e-learning metadata specialists and educators have collaborated to provide both learners and educators with a vibrant Portal featuring over 3500 free to use, openly licensed resources on topics like climate change, pollution, agriculture and eco-culture from diverse providers around the globe. Mostly licensed under Creative Commons, the high quality resources cover a wide range of education materials, from research papers and articles to full courses, lesson plans, assignments, assessments, video lectures, games etc. for all educational levels and accessible in various formats.

User feedback

Generous in services and features, the OER Commons Green enables its users to tag, rate, review and share interesting resources through Web 2.0 tools. Feedback is also encouraged through comments, as well as by aligning resources to curriculum standards. The feedback from the user community ensures the sustainability of the Portal and, at the same time, adds value to its content. Due to the use of educational metadata, users can easily search for content using a traditional or an advanced search, as well as by clicking on keywords found in a keyword cloud, used to label resources. To facilitate the active participation of teachers around the world, quick annotation is made possible by a bookmarking button available for the majority of web browsers. Portal’s navigation and appeareance are also of high importance.

Quality assurance

Besides user feedback, all Green OER Commons resources go through a detailed quality assurance process involving careful selection, annotation and review. Before integrating a resource in the Green collection, it is initially checked by the context expert against its relation to the scope of the collection. In addition, before the metadata record is created, the resource has to be  pre-checked against the following core criteria:

  1. Accessibility: The resource can be opened using the provided URL
  2. Appropriateness against violence, pornography, racism etc.
  3. Relation of metadata and content to green topics
  4. The Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) of the resource

How to Join?

This presentation is part of a one hour session entitled Search Engines for Open Access Web Resources containing 3 short presentations that will take place on Thursday 25 October 2012 (4:00-5:00pm Rome time). To join this session, visit the main page for the Open Acces Week @ AIMS webinars.