Open Education Resources are defined as free materials used for teaching and learning. In higher education, these include courseware, textbooks, digital sources, open access journals, and government documents.
Many universities have followed MIT's lead and model for open courseware (OCW). OCW Course materials are freely accessible but no certificates or degrees are granted by the institution. The intent is to share knowledge and resources with all who interested in learning.
More information about Open Courseware is available at the Open Courseware Consortium site.