Medical students, health care workers and faculty at cash-strapped educational institutions in Africa can access online educational materials, videos and other tools through a new web-based resource called OER Africa. Open education resources, known as OER, are increasingly providing students with up-to-date information and expertise at little or no cost.
OER Africa - established by the South African Institute for Distance Education - has assembled a collection of electronic versions of medical texts and other instructional materials on topics such as reproductive health and laboratory methodology. The content is freely available for use by educators and students and can be printed or copied without paying royalties or license fees. Unlike other online or e-learning projects, the content is produced with the assumption that it will be printed and used in a hard copy version, given the African context.
The materials are being produced and compiled by a consortium that includes the University of Michigan and several major African research universities.