What do we mean when we talk about "open"? The use of the word is as wide as it is long, and encompasses a variety of areas including open data, open access, open scholarship, open source, open standards....open educational resources (OER), and open practices and pedagogy (OEP).
In the context of this short presentation, the focus is primarily on open educational resources, and their facilitation of open practices, and their intersection with the open web. The presentation is designed with higher education course design and delivery in mind, with the intended audience being both course instructors and instructional designers. It attempts to answer the question -
"Why Open? Why you should adopt OER for teaching and learning."
In 2002, UNESCO defined OER as "teaching, learning or research materials that are in the public domain or released with an intellectual property license that allows for free use, adaptation, and distribution". Since, the open conversation has flourished in higher education significantly. So much so that some argue that the word "open" itself has been has been watered down, or in some cases mired by for-profit organizations using it conceptually to promote new business models (a practice referred to as...yup, openwashing.), but I digress...
The term open educational practices, which inherently includes open pedagogy, on the other hand, has suffered from somewhat of an identity crisis with no single definition emerging as gospel. And this is likely for good reason. Pedagogy (good, critical) should not be static, and where OER benefits from strict criteria, OEP would be stifled. David Wiley (2017) sees OEP as directly related to OER: "open pedagogy is the set of teaching and learning practices only possible or practical in the context of the 5R permissions. Or, to operationalize, open pedagogy is the set of teaching and learning practices only possible or practical when you are using OER." I find this definition too limiting, mainly as it leaves no affordances in the possibilities of the open web, good and/or bad. And so, for the purpose of this presentation, I am leaning toward Martin Weller's recent definition, admittedly in part, as it does suit my purpose. He writes, "[o]pen educational practice covers any significant change in educational practice afforded by the open nature of the Internet" (Weller, 2017).
So again, why open? This presentation will seek to argue that while there are many reasons to go "open" in a variety of higher education contexts, that issues of access and agency are central justifications. If teaching and learning in blended and online environments should allow for (inter)activity and collaboration toward sustained communities of inquiry, then surely open resources and practices offer a place to start? Finally, the presentation will position the arguments tucked within a resounding call for improved critical digital literacies for instructors and learners. It will be accompanied by a longer paper providing evidence-based arguments for adoption.
Slide Notes Here.
UNESCO. (2002). Forum on the Impact of Open Courseware for Higher Education in Developing Countries: Final Report. Retrieved from http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0012/001285/128515e.pdf
Weller, M. (2017, April 12). My definition is this. [BLOG}. Retrieved from http://blog.edtechie.net/oep/my-definition-is-this/
Wiley, D. (2017, April 4). How is open pedagogy different? [BLOG]. Retrieved from https://opencontent.org/blog/archives/4943
This presentation attempts to answer the question -