Developing Institutional Open Educational Resource Repositories in Vietnam: Opportunities and Challenges




open educational resources, OER, institutional open educational resource repository development, IOER


The introduction of open educational resources (OER) provides new opportunities for learners worldwide to access high-quality educational materials at the lowest cost. As a developing country, Vietnam is one of the countries that can most benefit from the OER movement. However, the concept of OER in Vietnam remains little known to the public, with few institutional OER repositories (IOER) developed. This study contends that IOER development in Vietnam is complicated and constrained by many contextual difficulties; it was designed to explore the challenges and opportunities. After a literature review, 20 semi-structured interviews were conducted with relevant stakeholders. Building on the findings from the literature, this study found that IOER development in Vietnam is constrained by five categories of challenges: (a) technological and infrastructure matters, (b) economic constraints, (c) sociocultural characteristics, (d) pedagogical concerns, and (e) legal limitations. Many of these challenges are not identified in the literature and provide insights into potential implications and solutions for future IOER in Vietnam and other countries.


Coughlan, T., Pitt, R., & Farrow, R. (2019). Forms of innovation inspired by open educational resources: A post-project analysis. Open Learning: The Journal of Open, Distance and e-Learning, 34(2), 156–175.

Do, M. (2013). Open educational resources in Vietnam. In G. Dhanarajan & D. Porter (Eds.), Open education resources: An Asian perspective (pp. 161–174). COL and OER Asia.

Do, V. H., Le, T. N., Nguyen, L., Nguyen, H. Q., Nguyen, T. K. D., Dong, D. H., Bui, T. T., Tran, D. H., & Bui, T. A. T. (Eds.). (2019). Developing and harnessing open educational resources. Vietnam National University Publishing House.

Dutta, I. (2016). Open educational resources (OER): Opportunities and challenges for Indian higher education. Turkish Online Journal of Distance Education, 17(2), 110–121.

Elman, C., Gerring, J., & Mahoney, J. (Eds.). (2020). The production of knowledge: Enhancing progress in social science. Cambridge University Press.

European Commission. (2013). Opening up education: Innovative teaching and learning for all through new technologies and open educational resources. EUR-Lex.

Friesen, N. (2009). Open educational resources: New possibilities for change and sustainability. International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 10(5).

Glesne, C., & Peshkin, A. (1992). Becoming qualitative researchers: An introduction. Longman.

Goldkuhl, G. (2012). Pragmatism vs. interpretivism in qualitative information systems research. European Journal of Information Systems, 21(2), 135–146.

Hodgkinson-Williams, C. (2010). Benefits and challenges of OER for higher education institutions. OAsis.

Hsieh, H. F., & Shannon, S. E. (2005). Three approaches to qualitative content analysis. Qualitative Health Research, 15(9), 1277–1288.

Hu, E., Li, Y., Li, J., & Huang, W. H. (2015). Open educational resources (OER) usage and barriers: A study from Zhejiang University, China. Educational Technology Research and Development, 63(6), 957–974.

Markoff, J. (2005). What the dormouse said: How the sixties counterculture shaped the personal computer industry. Viking.

McGreal, R. (2017). Special report on the role of open educational resources in supporting the sustainable development goal 4: Quality education challenges and opportunities. The International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 18(7).

Ministry of Education and Training. (2019). Official dispatch no. 4301/BGDĐT-GDTX regarding the creation and development of OER.

Mosharraf, M., & Taghiyareh, F. (2016). The role of open educational resources in the eLearning movement. Knowledge Management & E-Learning: An International Journal, 8(1), 10–21.

Mtebe, J. S., & Raisamo, R. (2014). Challenges and instructors’ intention to adopt and use open educational resources in higher education in Tanzania. International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 15(1), 249–271.

Ngimwa, P., & Wilson, T. (2012). An empirical investigation of the emergent issues around OER adoption in Sub-Saharan Africa. Learning, Media and Technology, 37(4), 398–413.

Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). (2007). Giving knowledge for free: The emergence of open educational resources.

Pena, H. (2009). Higher education: The success and challenges in open education resources (OER).

Stracke, C. M. (2019). Quality frameworks and learning design for open education. The International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 20(2), 180–203.

Stracke, C. M. (2020). Open science and radical solutions for diversity, equity and quality in research: A literature review of different research schools, philosophies and frameworks and their potential impact on science and education. In D. Burgos (Eds.), Radical solutions and open science. An open approach to boost Higher Education (pp. 17-37).

Stracke, C. M., Downes, S., Conole, G., Burgos, D., & Nascimbeni, F. (2019). Are MOOCs open educational resources? A literature review on history, definitions and typologies of OER and MOOCs. Open Praxis, 11(4), 331-341.

Thumbumrung, T., & Aroonpiboon, B. (2018). The emergence of Thai OER to support open education. In E. Méndez, F. Crestani, C. Ribeiro, G. David, & J. Lopes (Eds.), Digital libraries for open knowledge (pp. 368–372). Springer.

Torres, N. M. (2013). Embracing openness: The challenges of OER in Latin American education. Open Praxis, 5(1), 81–89."

Truong, V. (2020, August 10-14). What factors affect the development of institutional open educational resource repositories? An empirical investigation [Paper presentation]. 2020 Americas Conference on Information Systems (AMCIS 2020), virtual.

UNESCO. (2002). Open courseware and developing countries: Building a community. The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation.

UNESCO. (2017). Second world OER congress Ljubljana OER action plan.

UNESCO. (2018). Vietnam education and literacy.

UNESCO. (2019). Open educational resources (OER): Recommendation on OER.

Vietnam Government Portal. (2019a). Law no. 43/2019/QH14 of the National Assembly: Law on education.

Vietnam Government Portal. (2019b). Law no. 46/2019/QH14 of the National Assembly: Law on libraries.

Williamson, K. (2017). Populations and samples. In K. Williamson & G. Johanson, (Eds.), Research methods: Information, systems, and contexts (2nd ed., pp. 359–377). Chandos Publishing.



How to Cite

Truong, V., Denison , T., & Stracke, C. M. (2021). Developing Institutional Open Educational Resource Repositories in Vietnam: Opportunities and Challenges. The International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 22(4), 109–124.



Research Articles