Skip to Main Content

Open Educational Resources (OER): Health Sciences

A place to go to learn more about open educational resources and how to get started using them!


Anatomy and Physiology  -OpenStax

Anatomy and Physiology is a dynamic textbook for the yearlong Human Anatomy and Physiology course taught at most two- and four-year colleges and universities to students majoring in nursing and applied health. A&P is 29 chapters of pedagogically effective learning content, organized by body system, and written at an audience-appropriate level. The lucid text, strategically constructed art, inspiring career features, and links to external learning tools address the critical teaching and learning challenges in the course.  -OpenStax


J. Gordon Betts, Tyler Junior College, Life Sciences and Agriculture

Eddie Johnson, Central Oregon Community College, Biology

Jody E. Johnson, Arapahoe Community College, Biology

Dr. James A. Wise, Hampton University, Biology

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported  License.


Human Physiology -Wikibook

This text was featured on Wikibooks because it contains substantial content and is well-formatted.   It features sections on all traditional topics of human physiology and contains well-produced graphics.  All but a few sections contain their own glossary of terms and review questions. 

This text is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License


Communicable Diseases -AMREF

This manual covers the full range of communicable diseases in the African Region.  HIV/AIDS has a chapter dedicated to it and the authors have included discussions of emerging infections.  The goal of this text is to provide students in medical training colleges, nurses, clinical officers, and teachers with all necessary information needed to learn about communicable diseases in Africa. 

This text is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. 


Contemporary Health Issues -Foorhill College

This online text examines all aspects of contemporary health.  It aims to equip students with the ability to appraise and assess public attitudes and behavior regarding health and disease.   Addressing Public Health, immunizations, drug abuse, behavior patters, and cultural health behaviors, this text covers a wide range of healt topics. 


Judy Baker, Ph.D., Dean of Foothill Global Access at Foorhill College

This text is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License.


Nutrition -Kansas State

This Nutrition text was developed for a 3-hour, intermediate-level, nutrition course at Kansas State University.  The book is divided into 13 chapters that contain well-produced graphics.  The enire book can easily be opened in Google Docs where it can easily be edited and then exported as in the filetype of your choice. 


Brian Lindshield Ph.D., Nurtitional Sciences, University of Kansas

This text is in the public domain; however, attribution is appreciated. 

Open Textbook Collections

Find more Biology textbooks in these collections



Open Textbook Library

The Open Textbook Library is a collection of open textbooks that features reviews written by professors.  A project of the University of Minnesota, The Open Textbook Library provides a review rubric for faculty to use when evaluating textbooks and displays them for the benefit of potential adopters. 

College Open Textbooks

The College Open Textbooks Collaborative, a collection of twenty-nine educational non-profit and for-profit organizations, affiliated with more than 200 colleges, is focused on driving awareness and adoptions of open textbooks to more than 2000 community and other two-year colleges. This includes providing training for instructors adopting open resources, peer reviews of open textbooks, and mentoring online professional networks that support for authors opening their resources, and other services.  -College Open Textbooks

BC Campus Open Ed

The B.C. Open Textbook Project is funded by the BC Ministry of Advanced Education, and BCcampus is tasked with managing it. A goal of the Project is to provide flexible and affordable access to higher education resources in B.C. by making available 40 openly-licensed textbooks. These texts will be available for selection by B.C. faculty, and digital versions of the texts will be free of charge to students. For those who prefer a printed copy, this format will also be available on demand for a low cost. -BC Campus


MERLOT is a collection of online resources curated by a community of faculty, staff, and students of higher education.  This subset of the MERLOT collection features openly licensed textbooks for use by students and faculty.  MERLOT allows its users to rate materials and comment on specific resources.

Supplemental Materials

Introduction to Clinical Pain Problems -Tufts University

This course will introduce the general principles of biomedical evaluation and management of common clinical pain problems. It will present ways to evaluate the biomedical characteristics of the pain experience -temporal pattern severity, location, quality, intensity and exacerbating and relieving factors.  Throughout the course, emphasis will be placed upon viewing superficially diverse pain syndromes as part of the fundamentally unified group of processes.

This courseware is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike License


Biology  -Khan Academy

Video lectures covering topics seen in a first year college biology course including cells and cell division, cellular respiration, photosynthesis and immunology to name a few.

The use of Khan Academy and materials is subject to their Creative Commons License and other terms of use.


BioWiki  -UC Davis

The BioWiki is a collaborative approach toward biology education where an Open Access textbook environment is constantly being written and re-written by students and faculty members resulting in a free Biology textbook to supplant conventional paper-based books.


Prof. Delmar S. Larsen, UC Berkeley, College of Biological Sciences

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.


Wikimedia Commons

Wikimedia Commons is a media file repository making available public domain and freely-licensed educational media content (images, sound and video clips) to everyone, in their own language. Use the search to find content related to your interest. 



Lecture Videos

Introduction to Biology  -MIT

These lectures from the MIT Biology Department cover the fundamental principles of biochemistry, genetics, molecular biology, and cell biology. Biological function at the molecular level is particularly emphasized and covers the structure and regulation of genes, as well as, the structure and synthesis of proteins, how these molecules are integrated into cells, and how these cells are integrated into multicellular systems and organisms. In addition, each version of the subject has its own distinctive material. 


Prof. Eric Lander, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Biology

Prof. Robert Weinberg, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Biology

Dr. Claudette Gardel, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Biology

Prof. Andrew Chess, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Biology 

Use of the MIT OpenCourseWare site and materials is subject to their Creative Commons License and other terms of use.


Biology 1A  -UC Berkeley

General Biology Lecture - General introduction to cell structure and function, molecular and organismal genetics, animal development, form and function.


Jennifer A Doudna, UC Berkeley, Molecular and Cell Biology

Nipam Patel, UC Berkeley, Molecular and Cell Biology

Gary L. Firestone, UC Berkeley, Molecular and Cell Biology

Michael Meighan, UC Berkeley, Molecular and Cell Biology

The use of UC Berkeley site and materials is subject to their Creative Commons License and other terms of use.


Biology 1B  -UC Berkeley

General introduction to plant development, form, and function; population genetics, ecology, and evolution. Intended for students majoring in the biological sciences, but open to all qualified students.


Alan Shabel, UC Berkeley, Museum of Paleontology

Bruce G. Baldwin, UC Berkeley, Integrative Biology

John P. Huelsenbeck, UC Berkeley, Integrative Biology

The use of UC Berkeley site and materials is subject to their Creative Commons License and other terms of use.


Genomes and Diversity  -New York University

Millions of species of animals, plants and microbes inhabit our planet. Genomics, the study of all the genes in an organism, is providing new insights into this amazing diversity of life on Earth. We begin with the fundamentals of DNA, genes and genomes. We then explore microbial diversity, with an emphasis on how genomics can reveal many aspects of organisms, from their ancient history to their physiological and ecological habits. We follow with examinations of animal and plant diversity, focusing on domesticated species, such as dogs and tomatoes, as examples of how genomic methods can be used to identify genes that underlie new or otherwise interesting traits. Genomics has also transformed the study of human diversity and human disease. We examine the use of DNA to trace human ancestry, as well as the use of genomics as a diagnostic tool in medicine. With the powerful new technologies to study genomes has come an increased power to manipulate them. We conclude by considering the societal implications of this ability to alter the genomes of crop plants, livestock and potentially humans.  -New York University


All original content on this page is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. All linked-to content adheres to its respective license.

Creative Commons License