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Open Educational Resources

Information sources on Open Educational Resources (OER) including background information, collections of existing OER, creation tools, pedagogical application and academic literature

Creating an OER Attribution

Attributing means giving credit. It's the same idea as "citing." 

Citing = Attributing
Citation = Attribution

Below are the two main methods of attributing or citing materials. Check with your instructors for their preferred method(s).

Resource page adopted from: "How to Cite OER" by Tacoma Community College Library is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

Open Attribution Builder Form

Attribution Formula: Title -- Author -- License

This is often referred to as the "TAL" formula for citing OER.

Basic form for the Open Attribution Builder

OER with Regular Citation Styles

Use a regular citation style, like APA or MLA and simply add the CC license or public domain info at the end of a regular citation.

Below is an example in APA style.


1. Create a regular citation:


Photo iconBasic formula for citing IMAGES in APA style:
Owner/Author/Creator. (Publication Date or n.d.). Title of image in italics [media type such as Painting, Photograph, Infographic]. Retrieved from URL.

Photo iconExample of citing an IMAGE in APA style:
Claypool, R. (2012, October 5). Flamingo [Photograph]. Retrieved from https://flic.kr/p/dh7axD

2. Add the license info:

Use the acronyms (like CC BY SA), or the text versions of the license (e.g. CC Attribution - Share Alike, which is the text version of CC BY SA). For public domain material, add "Public Domain."


Photo iconExample of adding license information for an IMAGE:
Claypool, R. (2012, October 5). Flamingo [Photograph]. Retrieved from https://flic.kr/p/dh7axD. CC BY license.

Additional example:


Video iconExample of adding license citation information for a creative commons licensed VIDEO:
All Things Animal TV. (10 September 2014). Flamingos: Animals for children. Kids videos. Kindergarten | Preschool learning [Video file]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pz3XiJac57w. CC BY license.

More information

Image sources:

  • "Photo icon" by IO-Images, Pixabay, is licensed under CC0 (public domain)
  • "Video icon" by IO-Images, Pixabay, is licensed under CC0 (public domain)