• Description

Open educational resources (OER) promise increased access, participation, quality, and relevance, in addition to cost reduction. These seemingly fantastic promises are based on the supposition that educators and learners will discover existing resources, improve them, and share the results, resulting in a virtuous cycle of improvement and re-use. By anecdotal metrics, existing web scale search is not working for OER. This situation impairs the cycle underlying the promise of OER, endangering long term growth and sustainability. While the scope of the problem is vast, targeted improvements in areas of curation, indexing, and data exchange can improve the situation, and create opportunities for further scale. I explore the way the system is currently inadequate, discuss areas for targeted improvement, and describe a prototype system built to test these ideas. I conclude with suggestions for further exploration and development.