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Book part

Andy Lane

This chapter outlines some theoretical, historical and analytical themes covering national, trans-national and international trends in open education. It starts by looking…

Abstract

This chapter outlines some theoretical, historical and analytical themes covering national, trans-national and international trends in open education. It starts by looking at the social, economic and political drivers for education systems in general, and how openness has been used to widen access through attacking the iron triangle of education: access, quality and cost (open as a door). It then looks at the more recent technological and ideological developments that have aided openness (open as a book); including the central role that open licensing of digital materials (open as a right) has played in changing the social and economic drivers of education and in particular open educational resources. Next, it looks at the importance of open innovation, social innovation and communities of practice for open education (open as a relationship) and includes a comparison between the development of open source software and the development of open educational resources. It goes on to consider the impacts of all these on national and international policy (open as a border) before reviewing the social and economic role of open education from the perspectives of lifelong learners, students, educational institutions and educational publishers (open for business in the future). The chapter concludes by forecasting possible trends in open education for the next 15 years.

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Article

Shironica P. Karunanayaka and Som Naidu

A critical attribute of open educational practices (OEP) is the pursuit of open scholarship which comprises the release of educational resources under an open licence…

Abstract

Purpose

A critical attribute of open educational practices (OEP) is the pursuit of open scholarship which comprises the release of educational resources under an open licence scheme that permits no-cost access, use, reuse, adaptation, retention and redistribution to others. The degree of openness in relation to this attribute will depend on the context and culture of the place and the people in it. When left to chance, the adoption and practice of open scholarship by educators is at best sketchy. For optimum impact, a design-based approach is essential. A central focus of such an approach will need to target educators’ belief systems and practices about their scholarship. Any such work will involve researchers collaborating with practitioners in real-life settings to improve educational practices through iterative analysis, design, development and implementation. The purpose of this paper is to report on how the development and use of such a design-based approach, implemented by the Open University of Sri Lanka, impacted the adoption and uptake of open scholarship among teachers in the Sri Lankan school system in terms of changes in their use of instructional resources, pedagogical thinking and pedagogical practices.

Design/methodology/approach

The study adopted a design-based research (DBR) approach (Reeves, 2006), which involved researchers collaboratively working with practitioners in real-life settings to improve their educational practices along three aspects – instructional resource use, pedagogical perspectives and pedagogical practices. Based on the four stages of the DBR approach – analysis, solution, testing and refinement, and reflection, a professional development intervention programme was designed and implemented to support teachers on the integration of open educational resources (OER) and adoption of OEP in their teaching-learning process. Data collected throughout the process using multiple strategies such as questionnaire surveys, concept mapping, lesson plans, focus group interviews, self-reflections and “stories”, were analyzed using both qualitative and quantitative methods.

Findings

By the end of the intervention, significant changes were observed in teachers’ use of instructional resources, their pedagogical thinking and pedagogical practices. While resource usage has shifted from no or low usage of OER to reuse, revise, remix and creation of OER, the pedagogical thinking and practices of teachers moved from a content-centric and individualized patterns to more constructivist, context centric and collaborative ways. The diffusion of OEP was prominent along two dimensions – enhancements in the individual practices in innovative OER use as well as collaborative practices of sharing of resources, knowledge and good practices.

Practical implications

The systematic and flexible methodology adopted based on the DBR approach via a framework designed as a contextualized, process oriented and a self-reflective enquiry has been very useful to support changes in OEP among practitioners over time.

Originality/value

This iterative process allowed the researchers to function as “designers”, while investigating real-life issues in collaboration with the practitioners through reflective enquiry to further refine innovative practices towards OEP. This provides valuable insights for improved design solutions for future interventions in similar contexts.

Details

Asian Association of Open Universities Journal, vol. 12 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1858-3431

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Article

Nelson Piedra, Edmundo Tovar, Ricardo Colomo-Palacios, Jorge Lopez-Vargas and Janneth Alexandra Chicaiza

The aim of this paper is to present an initiative to apply the principles of Linked Data to enhance the search and discovery of OpenCourseWare (OCW) contents created and…

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this paper is to present an initiative to apply the principles of Linked Data to enhance the search and discovery of OpenCourseWare (OCW) contents created and shared by the universities.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper is a case study of how linked data technologies can be applied for the enhancement of open learning contents.

Findings

Results presented under the umbrella of OCW-Universia consortium, as the integration and access to content from different repositories OCW and the development of a query method to access these data, reveal that linked data would offer a solution to filter and select semantically those open educational contents, and automatically are linked to the linked open data cloud.

Originality/value

The new OCW-Universia integration with linked data adds new features to the initial framework including improved query mechanisms and interoperability.

Details

Program, vol. 48 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0033-0337

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Book part

Markus Deimann and Peter Sloep

For an extended period of time education was mainly formal, that is a system with clear roles, goals and responsibilities. Education resembled an immutable and closed…

Abstract

For an extended period of time education was mainly formal, that is a system with clear roles, goals and responsibilities. Education resembled an immutable and closed system with few, if any, connections to other parts of society. However, during the last century significant changes occurred in many areas of society, culminating in global reform movements to democratise education and to increase participation by opening up education. A current and prominent example of such a movement is Open Educational Resources (OER), which is a global attempt to facilitate the flow of knowledge, reduce the costs of education, and establish an educational system based on humanistic and moral values (i.e. sharing). Yet, recent developments are progressing at such an accelerated speed that it is hard to predict the ‘real’ value of OERs for educational purposes. Also, within OER little reference has been made to previous forms of Open Education, such as Open Classroom/Open Learning in the 1960s and 1970s or to the even older German progressive education (Reformpädagogik). Current OE forms can be characterised as a mixture of economical (‘education as a commodity’), moral (‘education as a common good’) and social (‘education as a shared enterprise’) claims, each of which contribute to the emergence of Open Education. This introductory chapter attempts to set the stage for a sound engagement with openness in education. It provides a conceptual framework that discusses major developments throughout the history of Open Education from a philosophical standpoint. Special attention will be paid to the concept of Bildung (self-realisation, self-cultivation) as an in-depth theory that can not only inform what happens when learners utilise OER but also allows one to reflect on the impact of OER on society. Selected cases of Open Education will be reviewed and then framed with the theory of Bildung. Eventually, this will lead to a set of lessons learned that are aimed at guiding current debates on Open Education.

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Anthony F. Camilleri and Anne-Christin Tannhäuser

Open Courseware, in many ways, was the starting point towards mainstream discussion and adoption of open learning, particularly in higher education. In its first…

Abstract

Open Courseware, in many ways, was the starting point towards mainstream discussion and adoption of open learning, particularly in higher education. In its first iteration, the concept specifically excluded assessment recognition, and credentialisation, which aims to ‘liberate’ knowledge without shattering the designing, teaching and awarding processes traditional education has relied upon for decades, if not centuries.

Details

Openness and Education
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-685-9

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Article

Stefan Dietze, Salvador Sanchez‐Alonso, Hannes Ebner, Hong Qing Yu, Daniela Giordano, Ivana Marenzi and Bernardo Pereira Nunes

Research in the area of technology‐enhanced learning (TEL) throughout the last decade has largely focused on sharing and reusing educational resources and data. This…

Abstract

Purpose

Research in the area of technology‐enhanced learning (TEL) throughout the last decade has largely focused on sharing and reusing educational resources and data. This effort has led to a fragmented landscape of competing metadata schemas, or interface mechanisms. More recently, semantic technologies were taken into account to improve interoperability. The linked data approach has emerged as the de facto standard for sharing data on the web. To this end, it is obvious that the application of linked data principles offers a large potential to solve interoperability issues in the field of TEL. This paper aims to address this issue.

Design/methodology/approach

In this paper, approaches are surveyed that are aimed towards a vision of linked education, i.e. education which exploits educational web data. It particularly considers the exploitation of the wealth of already existing TEL data on the web by allowing its exposure as linked data and by taking into account automated enrichment and interlinking techniques to provide rich and well‐interlinked data for the educational domain.

Findings

So far web‐scale integration of educational resources is not facilitated, mainly due to the lack of take‐up of shared principles, datasets and schemas. However, linked data principles increasingly are recognized by the TEL community. The paper provides a structured assessment and classification of existing challenges and approaches, serving as potential guideline for researchers and practitioners in the field.

Originality/value

Being one of the first comprehensive surveys on the topic of linked data for education, the paper has the potential to become a widely recognized reference publication in the area.

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Article

Yongrong Xin, Xiuping Zuo and Qingping Huang

The implementation of the national education and lifelong education should break through the traditional learning mode in the digital era. A seamless learning environment…

Abstract

Purpose

The implementation of the national education and lifelong education should break through the traditional learning mode in the digital era. A seamless learning environment is the intelligent form of deep integration of digital learning environment and physical learning environment. The development and construction of seamless learning space and platform is a new trend of international mobile learning research and practice. So, the purpose of this paper is to build a seamless learning platform of the open education system by expanding and improving the connotation and extension of seamless learning, based on the theories of mobile learning, ubiquitous learning and open education, combining with the characteristics of the big data era.

Design/methodology/approach

A seamless learning platform model will be constructed through constructing five modules including resource integration module, requirement module, management module, teacher integration module, and carrier module, using interdisciplinary research methods (combined with economics), functional analysis, model methods and exploratory research methods. Finally, this paper attempts to realize the application of a seamless learning platform in open education through the strategic path of public-private partnership (PPP).

Findings

Seamless learning platform model given by this paper can effectively eliminate the problem of information asymmetry between learner-demander and educational manager through the effective management of carrier fusion module. Furthermore, it can effectively integrate the learning resources and teachers of the open education system and social individual education system, and provide high-quality shared learning resources and diverse stratification teachers to students and social workers through PPP project cooperation ways.

Originality/value

There are many papers on the study of open education and resource construction. However, few papers have studied how to effectively integrate and optimize various existing scattered online resources, including various system courses, teachers and platform systems. The paper provides an effective way to solve the above sub-problems and the realization path/model reference for the effective and accurate promotion of lifelong sustainable learning for all.

Details

Asian Association of Open Universities Journal, vol. 13 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2414-6994

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Book part

Patrina Law, Anna Page and Rosie Storrar

The Open University (OU) United Kingdom manages two platforms for hosting Open Educational Resources (OER): OpenLearn, delivering the OU’s OER, reaching over10 million…

Abstract

The Open University (OU) United Kingdom manages two platforms for hosting Open Educational Resources (OER): OpenLearn, delivering the OU’s OER, reaching over10 million learners a year, attracting a mostly UK audience, and OpenLearn Create, reaching 3 million learners a year, where anyone can create and share OER, attracting a mostly international – non-UK – audience. Both platforms release OER using a Creative Commons license and afford accessibility to learning materials specifically catering to the needs of underserved groups, in other words, individuals or groups who may have limited access to education or continuing professional development (CPD) either as recipient or as educator. Using case studies, research data analytics and survey data, this chapter reveals how the approach to delivering OER on OpenLearn Create fosters community engagement and outreach across a broad spectrum of projects in a range of languages and format often to those with restricted access to professional development within organizations. The chapter discusses weaknesses in the platform’s usability for delivering online courses, but strengths and recommendations for its use as an adaptable project-based tool. Research data also reveal that where an institution is prepared to minimally support the provision of such a platform, the contribution to humanizing education for OER projects globally is great.

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Article

Merinda McLure and Caroline Sinkinson

This paper aims to examine librarians’ professional motivations and theoretical perspectives to attend to care and student voice, as they pursue open educational resource

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to examine librarians’ professional motivations and theoretical perspectives to attend to care and student voice, as they pursue open educational resource (OER) initiatives in higher education.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors examine OER initiatives that serve as models for their work at the University of Colorado Boulder (CU Boulder), describe how they have attended to care and student voice in their work to date and reflect on how they hope to continue to do so in their future OER initiatives.

Findings

The authors find connections between theoretical perspectives for care in education and the values and ethics of both the open education movement and librarianship. They propose that these connections provide a foundation for librarians to align their professional motivations and practices in support of learning. The authors provide examples of OER programming that attend to care and student voice and offer related strategies for practitioners to consider.

Originality/value

Librarians at many post-secondary institutions provide critical advocacy and support the adoption, adaptation and creation of OER in higher education. Theories of care, values and ethics in the open education movement and librarianship provide a foundation for librarians to attend to care and elevate student voice as they undertake OER advocacy and initiatives.

Details

Reference Services Review, vol. 48 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0090-7324

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Article

Patrick Masson and Ken Udas

The purpose of this paper is to show that pointing to patterns of change in the adoption and institutionalization of educational resources, the appropriateness of

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to show that pointing to patterns of change in the adoption and institutionalization of educational resources, the appropriateness of traditional heavy and front‐loaded planning and management regimes is challenged in favor of alternative Agile Methods.

Design/methodology/approach

Starting from the simple observation that the original introduction of Course Management Systems to support online learning was ad hoc and evolutionary, rather than planned at an enterprise level, the paper points to the conflict between, and offers a solution for, open and decentralized resources and traditional teaching, learning, support, and management. By developing a logic to decentralization, a number of managerial strategies to improve agility are provided that address the changing nature of the university from one fundamentally designed to control, to one positioned to influence and adapt under the assumptions of change.

Findings

It is found that many components of the university including teaching, learning content, learning design, content development and management, and core infrastructure are shifting from centralized to decentralized models, while current management and governance practices remain centralized resulting in lagging development and increased risk.

Originality/value

The connections made here open a dialog for challenging and changing traditional management and decision‐making approaches within the organization, to better account for the environment that decentralized systems create.

Details

On the Horizon, vol. 17 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1074-8121

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