An open textbook is an openly-licensed textbook offered online by its author(s). The open license sets open textbooks apart from traditional textbooks by allowing users to read online, download, or print the book at no additional cost.
For a textbook to be considered open, it must be licensed in a way that grants a baseline set of rights to users that are less restrictive than its standard copyright. A license or list of permissions must be clearly stated by the author.
Generally, the minimum baseline rights allow users at least the following:
to use the textbook without compensating the author
to copy the textbook, with appropriate credit to the author
to distribute the textbook non-commercially
to shift the textbook into another format (such as digital or print)
Many authors also grant rights such as:
to add, remove or alter content in the textbook, often on the condition that derivative works must have the same license
to copy and distribute the textbook without giving credit to the author to use the textbook commercially
Search Open Textbooks and Repositories
Affordable Learning Georgia
Affordable Learning Georgia is funding and supporting efforts to replace commercial learning materials with no-cost-to-student alternatives.
All books published on the Classic Reader website are out-of-copyright, meaning their copyright protection has expired. This means you won't find the latest Stephen King, Tom Clancy, etc. You will find classic literary works from the start of the 20th century and previous centuries, from authors like Charles Dickens, Jules Verne, William Shakespeare and more.
College Open Textbooks
Peer reviewed more than 100 open textbooks and identified over 550. Freely available without restriction.
CC site that assists in understanding, applying, remixing, and using copyrighted materials. Also has a library of resources.
This site lists free online computer science, engineering and programming books, textbooks and lecture notes, all of which are legally and freely available over the Internet.
GALILEO - Open Learning Materials
GALILEO Open Learning Materials brings together open educational resources throughout the University System of Georgia, including open textbooks and ancillary materials. Most works hosted in GALILEO Open Learning Materials have a Creative Commons license, allowing the reuse, redistribution, remix, and revision of these materials.
Global Text Project
A free library of thousands of texts for students in a range of topics covered in a university undergraduate program.
A multidisciplinary Open Access publisher of books and journals covering the fields of Science, Technology and Medicine.
A UK-based project in which libraries share the cost of producing academic texts that are then released with a Creative Commons license.
Dedicated to facilitating broad, successful adoption of OER. Content in many areas. Content is made available in HTML format which should be able to be accessed through LMS.
MERLOT stands for Multimedia Educational Resource for Learning and Online Teaching. This resource has thousands of materials, including lesson plans, activities, tutorials and more. Create a username and login to keep track of your favorites.
MIT Open Courseware Online Textbooks
Index to online textbooks in MIT Open CoursWare. Some are online textbooks and are open-licensed e-versions of print books. Others are self published online books or notes so they serve as an alternative to conventional textbook.
Ohio Digital Bookshelf
A pilot project for the Ohio Textbook HQ, the Ohio Digital Bookshelf aims to provide inexpensive higher-ed textbooks.
Open Access Lit Books
9336 Academic peer-reviewed books and chapters from 233 publisher. This direct link points to the literature options on the site.
Open Textbooks for Hong Kong
The Open Textbooks for Hong Kong project aims to establish a sustainable system which provides quality open textbooks for adoption and adaptation at minimal cost for education for all.
Bringing together many of the resources that you will find in this site, as well as other resources not mentioned here, OER Commons makes it easy to search for OERs of all types, including: Assessments, Audio Lectures, Readings, Textbooks, and more!
Open Research Online
Journal articles, books, theses, and conference papers, and other published research from Open University, a UK based distance learning institution.
Founded at Rice University in 1999. non-profit serving millions of users every month. Tens of thousands of learning objects, called pages, are organized into thousands of textbook style books in a variety of disciplines, easily accessible and downloadable to any device. Authors can Remix, Create, Share.