Some MOOCs require printed textbooks.

Students attracted to massive open online courses (MOOC) for their accessibility are sometimes required to purchase textbooks for MOOCs that offer nothing but a certificate upon completion.

This meshing of free MOOC offerings and pricey textbooks have drawn scorn from student activists, college educators, and lawmakers alike, creating a financial barrier for participating on online college courses that were meant to be completed by anyone with an internet connection.

There are, however, options for MOOC teachers who want to avoid textbook fees.

The website MOOC News and Reviews compiled a list of some of the web’s best free textbook resources, and eCampus News editors have whittled down the selection to the top three, as seen below.

1) Wikibooks: “While some books are original, others began as text copied over from other sources of free content textbooks found on the internet,” according to Wikibooks. “All of the site’s content is released under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike license (or a compatible license). This means that, as with its sister project, Wikipedia, contributions remain copyrighted to their creators, while the licensing ensures that it can be freely distributed and reused subject to certain conditions.

“Wikibooks differs from Wikisource in that Wikisource collects exact copies and original translations of existing free content works, such as the original text of Shakespearean plays, while Wikibooks is dedicated either to original works or to significantly altered versions of existing works.”