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Many courses are using Open Education Resources (OERs), websites or online articles as course reading, over conventional textbooks. These flexible materials are delivered to students as a link in a course, and readily available online, anytime. These resources are often free and/or openly licensed for remixing and reuse in education. Studies have shown that both learners and educators have positive perceptions of and experiences with these types of resources, likely due to their cost and flexibility (Smith-Jaggars, Folk & Mullins, 2018). Logo Logo by

But how can we ensure learners are studying effectively with websites and OERs? Websites and open textbook platforms often rely only on browsers, and lack built in study tools like sticky notes, highlighting and annotation. This is where apps browser extensions, like, can help.

Get Started

To get started with, visit their Get Started page. Follow the instructions to:

  • create a free account;
  • add to your browser;
  • start annotating.

Once active, you’ll be able to start selecting and highlighting text on any web page, OER, and even on articles in open digital access journals. Select text in a sentence and release to annotate or highlight.

Select text in a sentence and release to annotate or highlight.
Figure 1. Select and annotate or highlight text on web pages. Screenshot by J. Wilkinson, January 3rd, 2020.
Figure 2. annotation sidebar. Screenshot by J. Wilkinson, January 3rd, 2020.

In the sidebar of your screen, you’ll be able to see your own annotations, and those anyone else has posted publicly. People can choose whether they are posting privately or publicly, and can reply to each other’s annotations and comments, creating dialogue and discussion directly within websites and OERs.

Learn more about the features available within the extension or bookmarklet, or learn more about how we read digital texts.


Shanna Smith Jaggars, Amanda L. Folk, & David Mullins. (2018). Understanding students’ satisfaction with OERs as course materialsPerformance Measurement and Metrics19(1), 66–74. Retrieved from

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  • Published: June 21, 2019
  • Word Count: 725
  • Reading time: ~ 2 minutes
  • Rights: Creative Commons CC-BY Attribution License This work is licensed under a Creative Commons CC-BY Attribution 4.0 International License.
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Jess Wilkinson

Jesslyn is the Educational Technology Officer at Conestoga. An Ontario Certified Teacher, and holding a B.A. and B.Ed., Jesslyn researches and promotes new technologies for faculty to enhance pedagogical practices. She brings to the role her experience as a Google and Microsoft certified technology trainer and as a classroom teacher in South Korea, Mongolia, and Ontario, focusing on special education and assistive learning technologies. She is available for workshops, consultations, and support with using technology in higher education contexts.

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