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Write … and More

Resources: Search and Find

A hand holding a magnifying glass.

Be creative when searching for resources to include in an open textbook

There are literally millions of educational resources — photos, illustrations, videos and film, audio clips, courses, articles, research — that have been released with an open-copyright licence or are in the public domain and available to open textbook authors and publishers. Below are online libraries, projects, directories, repositories, and websites where you will find both individual objects and full resources. If you have difficulty finding what you need, be creative and look for the desired item — photo, graphic, video — in an article from one of the many open academic journals or an open textbook. Another trick is to use several synonyms when searching for a hard-to-find resource.

Many sources contain items that range in user permissions from no copyright (e.g., in the public domain) to CC licences to all rights reserved. Make it your practice to check every resource’s licence or permissions before adding it to your open textbook. User rights have been noted beside some of the below sources.

It is recommended avoiding CC licences that include the -ND (NoDerivatives) restriction as content under this licence cannot be changed. See CC BY-ND 4.0 [New Tab] for more information.

Chapter table of contents

Canadian collections

Mixed collections (open and restricted materials)

Government

Libraries, museums, and book collections

Subject-specific collections

Type of resource

Repositories

Canadian collections

Mixed collections (open and restricted materials)

Creative Commons (CC)

Flickr

Google

Government

Canadian government websites

Most government of Canada websites and publications [New Tab] are covered by the open government licence. Here is an example of the Statistics Canada data licence

Source: Statistics Canada, name of product, reference date. Reproduced and distributed on an “as is” basis with the permission of Statistics Canada

However, when using a resource from a Canadian government website or publication, always check the Terms of Use, Copyright, or similar page for details.

Often, images and other resources from a Canadian government website stipulates that the reused image or resource not be used for commercial purposes. If this is the case, then add this line to your attribution statement: “This image cannot be used for commercial purposes.”

U.S. government websites

Generally, the information and images found on U.S. government websites [New Tab] are in the public domain. However, when using a resource from a U.S. government website, always check the Terms of Use, Copyright, or similar page for details.

Libraries, museums, and book collections

Also see open academic journals and repositories.

Subject-specific collections

Art, culture, and history

Broadcasting

Music and audio

Science and health

Type of resource

Audio

See Music and Audio

Courses, lectures, and lessons

Games and interactive simulations

Images: charts, clip art, graphs, icons, photos, symbols, vector images

Maps

Open academic journals

Videos and film

Repositories

License

Creative Commons License
Resources: Search and Find by Lauri Aesoph is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.