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School Librarians as OER Curators: A Framework to Guide Practice: Introduction

Introduction & How to Use this Guide


Open Educational Resources (OER) enable possibilities for new, more collaborative instructional practices and for more personalized learning experiences—because through open licensing, materials can be used, adapted, localized, and shared across learning communities.

Realizing the potential of OER, school librarians have begun to play an ever-increasing role in enabling its use by curating OER to meet specific teaching and learning needs in their schools and districts. But what do these curation practices look like, and how might they be further enabled within and across schools?

To answer these questions, ISKME, in partnership with Florida State University's School of Information, conducted a national study to explore what OER curation looks like for school librarians who are leading the way in OER curation practice. Based on the findings from this research, and ISKME’s wider OER curriculum work conducted in collaboration with educators since 2013, the LibGuide at hand presents a framework to guide future school librarians in their OER curation practice.

Using This LibGuide

The primary audience for this LibGuide is school librarians who seek to:

  • Expand their knowledge bout OER and OER curation
  • Advocate for OER and for their roles as instructional leaders
  • Train classroom teachers or other school stakeholders on the what, why, and how of OER
  • Create more collaborative curriculum development processes with educators and learners
  • Initiate conversations with district and school leaders around OER

We encourage school librarians and other users to remix, adapt, and select portions or the entirety of this LibGuide to meet their individual needs.

Accessing this Guide in Other Formats

  • A downloadable Google Doc version of this Guide can be accessed at
  • A research report on the findings that informed the creation of this Guide will be published in late 2019. Check back here for details.



This LibGuide is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. This Creative Commons license permits you to retain, reuse, copy, redistribute, and revise this guide—in whole or in part—for free, providing it is attributed as follows:

School Librarians as OER Curators: A Framework to Guide Practice, by the Institute for the Study of Knowledge Management in Education, is used under a CC BY 4.0 International License.


This LibGuide is based on a study led by the Institute for the Study of Knowledge Management in Education ( in collaboration with Florida State University's School of Information. The study is titled “Exploring OER Curation and the Role of School Librarians,” and was made possible in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (, under grant number LG-86-17-0035-17. 

The content in this LibGuide would not have been possible without the contributions of key individuals. Invaluable input was provided by the Advisory Board for the project, and by the project’s lead advisor and collaborator, Marcia Mardis, Ed.D., at Florida State University’s School of Information. Advisory Board members include: Joyce Valenza, Ph.D., Barbara Schultz-Jones, Ph.D., Mega Subramaniam, Ph.D., Sue Kimmel, Ph.D., and Erin English, Ed.D.

Most importantly, we would like to thank the school librarian research participants spanning five states (FL, MI, CA, WA, and NH) who allowed ISKME to collect data on their digital curation practices at their school sites, and provided feedback on study findings and on drafts of this document.


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