This open educational resources license toolkit is aimed at educators, students and the public who are developing resources they would like to license openly. The information, video, and license generator provided here will help you figure out how to choose and display a Creative Commons license when you are combining other open educational resource (OER) with different Creative Commons licenses. For example, when creating an open textbook, in addition to your own writing, you may wish to incorporate images, videos, chapters, and other resources into your derivative work.
Creative Commons (CC) is a non-profit organization that works to increase the amount of creativity (cultural, educational, and scientific content) in "the commons" — the body of work that is available to the public for free and legal sharing, use, repurposing, and remixing. Creative Commons licenses are not an alternative to copyright. They work alongside copyright and enable you to modify your copyright terms to best suit your needs. A Creative Commons license enables creators to distribute their content to a wide audience and specify the manner in which the work can be used while still maintaining their copyright. When you apply a license to your work to make it an OER), there is no registration required to license it. All you need to do is select a Creative Commons license and then display the license information on your work.
If you've created something and want people to know that you're happy to have them share, use, and build upon your work, then you may wish to consider publishing under a Creative Commons license. There are also many millions of works from songs and videos to scientific and academic content that you can use under the terms of open copyright licenses. For example, Flickr and YouTube allow you to apply Creative Commons licenses to your videos and images.
Creative Commons offers six licenses, each with a different set of elements, which are sometimes called conditions. The elements include Attribution, NonCommercial, ShareAlike, and NoDerivatives. The licenses range in openness from CC BY (Attribution), the least restrictive, to CC BY-NC-ND (Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives), the most restrictive. If you want to share your work as widely as possible, then place as few restrictions on it as possible. Below are the four elements that can be used to form a Creative Commons license.
BY - All of the licenses have the BY (Attribution) provision, meaning the author or rightsholder must be credited when the work is re-used, modified, or adapted. Each of the other provisions places its own restrictions on another's use of the work.
NC – NonCommercial: Restricts others from using your work commercially
SA – ShareAlike: Restricts others from using your work if they license their new creation under a different license from yours
ND – NoDerivatives: Allows for redistribution as long only if it is passed along unchanged and in whole
These elements can be combined to make the following six licenses:
To learn more about assigning Creative Commons licenses, watch the animated video, Creating OER and Combining Licenses.