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Open Educational Resources

Open Educational Resources (OER) offer educational materials accessible free of charge under a free licence and make a valuable contribution to the design and further development of teaching and research at the University of Applied Sciences Potsdam.

What is OER?

Open educational resources are educational materials that are either in the public domain or published under a free licence. This makes it possible to use them free of charge and in a legally secure way in teaching. In addition, OER can be edited, used, reproduced and distributed for specific needs.

OER include educational materials in any media form, such as graphics, videos, text files or entire online courses. They are made available on the internet via so-called OER repositories.

OER have been attracting great interest in higher education teaching for several years. Especially with regard to the growing use of digital educational materials, they have many advantages. Thanks to the free licences, teachers can integrate them into their courses free of charge and in a legally secure manner.

Further links:

An essential feature of OER is that it is published under a free licence. With the licence, the author(s) indicate the conditions for the use of the OER. The most common licences for publishing Open Content are the Creative Commons (CC) licences. The CC-BY- 4.0 licence is suitable for OER.

General OER repositories

Are you looking for suitable educational materials such as graphics, videos or worksheets for your teaching? In the OER repositories you will find materials that you can use under a free licence.

In the German-speaking world, there are several online repositories where OER are made available for several different subject areas.

  • HOOU - Hamburg Open Online University
    The online platform HOOU provides OER on various subjects, such as computer science, information science, philosophy and psychology, social sciences, technology, applied sciences, history and art.
  • ORCA - Open Resources Campus contains materials on a wide range of subjects, including physics, civil engineering, business administration, architecture, psychology, design.
    The portal Twillo from Lower Saxony contains educational materials on subjects such as engineering, mathematics and natural sciences, law, economics and social sciences, humanities, arts and art sciences.
  • Virtual Academy Sustainability
    The University of Bremen makes digital courses for students on sustainability topics freely available on the platform Virtuelle Akademie Nachhaltigkeit.
  • ZOERR - Central Open Educational Resources Repository
    The ZOERR of the universities in Baden-Württemberg offers open educational materials on subjects such as engineering, humanities, law, economics and social sciences, mathematics, natural sciences and the arts.
    The search index for OER in higher education of the Technische Informationsbibliothek Hannover (TIB) and the Hochschulbibliothekszentrum Nordrhein-Westfalen (hbz) can be used to find further German-language OER repositories.
  • AI Campus
    Self-study courses on the topic of AI/AI with focus on: Chatbots and voice assistants, data literacy, AI in education, AI in medicine.
    Some of the courses can be used free of charge. However, they are not OER material.

    The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) shares university courses under an OER licence on the platform. There are mainly courses on technical topics.
  • MoodleNet
    The Moodle community shares OER Moodle courses on various topics. You can also make your Moodle courses available as OER material to other Moodle users via MoodleNet.
  • TU Delft OpenCourseWare
    TU Delft shares its university courses on the platform under an OER licence. There are mainly courses from the technical field such as energy, infrastructure and mobility, environment, water and health.

Good practice at the FHP! OER in teaching

Here we present some good practice examples on the topic of OER in teaching from committed teachers at the University of Applied Sciences Potsdam.

If you would like to publish an example of your teaching on this topic, please contact us at

The group "Happiness Reflection Card Set" was developed by Prof. Dr. Antje Michel. It is aimed at interdisciplinary student project groups. With the help of the reflection cards, a shared meta-knowledge about the individual expectations, knowledge, experiences, ways of working and the knowledge-cultural imprint of the group participants is developed discursively. This meta-knowledge supports effective cooperation as a team.

The questions are divided into the following categories:

  • Values & Attitudes
  • Goals & Motivation
  • Working methods & competences
  • Framework
  • Motivators
  • The reflection card set includes a guide.

The collection of questions was developed at the University of Applied Sciences Potsdam to promote understanding in interdisciplinary, learning project working groups. It was developed in 2016 - 2019 in an iterative process involving three years of the master's programme "Urban Futures" (years 1 - 3). The visual design of the group "Happiness Reflection Card Set" was done by interface design graduate Niko Ripka.

The reflection card set is available as a digital version for use, as a digital open version for further development and editing, and as a print template for use as printed material. The open files for the further development of the printed version, including the style guide, are available from the author on request.

The certificate course "Research Data Management" was designed and implemented with significant participation of the FHP. All materials are published as OER. The project was led by Prof. Dr. Heike Neuroth and Carsten Schneemann from the University of Applied Sciences Potsdam together with Dr. Daniela Mertzen and Kathrin Woywod. Other project participants were Claudia Haase, Boris Jacob, Max Kroehling, Jens Mittelbach, Dr Janine Straka, Anita Szczukowski and Katrin Weise.

The course takes into account a variety of organisational, formal, technical, content-related and didactic aspects that are important for the development of suitable teaching materials. The certificate course, which is the responsibility of the state initiative "Research Data Management in Brandenburg" (FDM-BB), took place for the first time at the beginning of March 2023 as a one-week digital Spring School with 30 bachelor's and master's students from the eight Brandenburg universities. The certificate course, which takes place at least once a year, can be credited with two to four ECTS credits, depending on the scope of the examination. The entire course consists of a preparatory self-study phase including a quiz (approx. 10 hours), active participation in the Spring School (40 hours, a total of 2 ECTS credits) and optionally a follow-up examination (approx. 25 or 50 hours, 3 or 4 ECTS credits).

A total of eleven lecturers from the Brandenburg University of Technology Cottbus-Senftenberg, the University of Applied Sciences Potsdam and the University of Potsdam from different professional areas of responsibility (research and teaching, research support, library) convey the teaching content (see point (ii)).

The collection of materials made available here for re-use includes:

(A) The module manual of the certificate course (a PDF file).

(B) The entire teaching scripts (one PDF file) with the following module courses (MK):

  • MK 1: Introduction to Research Data Management; Research Data Lifecycle and FAIR Data Principles; Open Science; Exercises
  • MK 2: Data Documentation and Metadata; Data Management Plans; Data Management Plans with the Research Data Management Organiser (RDMO); Exercise.
  • MK 3: Active data management; long-term archiving; collaborative tools and versioning; exercise
  • MK 4: Data publication, persistent identification, citation; licences, Re3Data; legal aspects of FDM; exercise.
  • MK 5: Good scientific practice; project management; exercise; discussion, evaluation and individual counselling for examination performance

(C) Literature recommendations (one PDF file)

(D) Quiz questions (of the preparatory self-study phase of the course). Quiz questions are deposited here without correct answers, as they will be used in the following certificate course; we will be happy to provide them to teachers/lecturers on request (


In his seminar on Code-Driven Design, Prof. Dr. Sebastian Meier and FHP graduate and teaching assistant Jolanta Paliszweska have developed a blended learning course and published it as an OER. The e-learning course offers beginners a starting point for designing through programming. The course can be used as an accompaniment to the seminar or as a stand-alone learning offer. The focus is on interfaces between artefacts, which can be generated by code, and other applications and manufacturing processes. JavaScript is used as the programming language.

The seminar is structured in such a way that the content can be acquired in an equally effective way via reading/videos/trying things out, thus enabling multimodal access to knowledge. In addition, all videos are available in German and English and have subtitles. Furthermore, the first part of the seminar (introduction and 2D graphics) has already been transferred into sign language videos (40 videos). The second part is also to be transferred accordingly.

In the German-speaking and also international area, the introduction to (creative) programming in sign language to this extent is a novelty. It should be emphasised that the videos are not a "simple" translation by sign language interpreters, but videos specially created by a deaf designer.

More information on the seminar"Parametric Design. Introduction to Code-Driven Design


Within the framework of the MWFK-funded project on the Open Access Strategy of the State of Brandenburg, not only the strategy itself was developed with the participation of a committed and diverse network and published under a CC0 licence. Under the direction of Prof. Dr. Ellen Euler, further materials were created in the project. For example, a package of icons for visualising topics related to OA, science communication, publications, research processes and actors is now available for free reuse (information at, e.g. for presentations or explanatory videos.

More information on Open Access in Brandenburg

The aim of Prof. Dr. Julia Maria Struß 's project module is for students to develop a prototype for an e-learning offer as an OER on the topic of automatic indexing for other subsequent students. This should also be able to be used and further developed by others beyond the project course. For this purpose, the teacher makes her own extensive scripts on the topic of the planned OER resource available to the students. The exchange with external speakers on the topic of OER is also important.

The students in the project seminar acquire the following competences:

  • Develop practical project skills

  • Deepening critical and analytical thinking skills as well as problem-solving and decision-making skills

  • Teamwork

  • implementing application-oriented project work scientifically

  • scientific and practical examination of Open Educational Resources

  • Development of digital learning materials taking into account OER and subject area material

The students, in the courses in which the OER e-learning offer is used, acquire the following competences:

  • Basic knowledge of automatic indexing

  • Methods and areas of application of automatic indexing

The project "Occupational Health and Safety Digital" of the Digital TEaching Unit (ZEDI) under the direction of Julia Lee made an important contribution to the further training of staff and teachers in digital teaching. Web-based trainings on the topic of occupational safety and health in the woodworking shop were created as part of the project. The trainings and accompanying materials are made available free of charge as OER materials for re-use. Target groups include applied universities, technical-oriented schools, vocationally-oriented further education providers and craft enterprises.

More information on the project and access to the WBTs