OpenCourseWare, or OCW, is a term applied to course materials in a virtual learning environment created by universities and shared freely with the world via the internet. Already in 1999 the University of Tübingen in Germany published videos of lectures online in the context of its timms initiative. The OCW movement only took off, however, with the launch of MIT OpenCourseWare at MIT in October 2002. Since then, a number of universities have created OCW projects, some of which have been funded by the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation.
- is a free and open digital publication of high quality educational materials, organized as courses
- is available for use and adaptation under an open license, such as a Creative Commons license
- does not typically provide certification or access to instructors