Introducing the CARE Framework for OER Stewardship

Doug Levin

In a post of nearly two years ago (“ OERwashing: Beyond the Elephant Test “), I argued that the OER community lacked a reliable way to assess new entrants to the OER field, especially for-profit organizations, in terms of their support for openness and OER community values. It is for that reason that I am pleased today to introduce the CARE Framework for OER Stewardship. “The Care Framework for OER Stewardship.”

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When is an OER an OER?

iterating toward openness

tl ;dr – If a resource is licensed in a way that grants you permission to engage in the 5R activities, and grants you those permissions for free, it’s an open educational resource (OER) – no matter where you find it or how it’s being used. For several years I have used a shorthand definition of OER as “free access plus permission to engage in the 5R activities.” Consider the following scenarios: A person downloads an OER to their laptop.

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Thoughts on Continuous Improvement and OER

iterating toward openness

Recently I’ve been doing both more thinking and more roll-up-your-sleeves working on continuous improvement of OER. Once we’ve identified that content, we invite faculty to Shine by contributing their expertise to the improvement of OER. However, we’re just one company.

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Questioning the OER Orthodoxy: Is the Commons the Right Metaphor for our Work with OER?

iterating toward openness

At OpenEd18 I gave a presentation titled “Questioning the OER Orthodoxy: Is the Commons the Right Metaphor for our Work?” After this brief discussion, I asked “what if the commons is the wrong metaphor for our work with OER?” Primary among the reasons we might ask the question is this – much of what is central to the idea of a commons is exactly the opposite in the context OER. OER cannot be overused or overconsumed.

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Of Sunlight, OER, and Lumen

iterating toward openness

Because I can’t stop thinking about open, I’ve been pondering the relationship between solar power and OER. ”, “How can you sell OER if they’re free?”, ”, and “If OER are free, why would anyone pay you?”

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OER: Some Questions and Answers

iterating toward openness

Earlier this week I read an op-ed – sponsored by Pearson – titled “If OER is the answer, what is the question?” OER often shine in their variety and ability to deepen resources for niche topics. Stigmergy is the watchword for the next decade of OER.

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Campus Support for OER is Growing, Survey Finds

Edsurge

The number of colleges running efforts to help professors shift from published textbooks to low-cost online materials known as OER is growing rapidly. Nearly two thirds of colleges in the survey—64 percent—reported campus programs to “encourage faculty to use OER content for their courses.” This is no longer an intellectual argument on the part of the [OER] evangelists.” As Green put it: “There’s a huge set of concerns about quality of OER by faculty.”

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Can a For-Profit, Venture-Backed Company Keep OER Free—and Be Financially Sustainable?

Edsurge

New and traditional publishers are trying to offer alternatives such as open educational resources (OER), or freely downloadable and adaptable learning materials. But some providers of OER still ask for fees in return, and that has advocates concerned. One company, Top Hat, is trying to shift away from that by opening up its marketplace of mostly OER materials to users for free. The company is also banking on authors and adopters to check for quality themselves.

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As OER Grows Up, Advocates Stress More Than Just Low Cost

Edsurge

But fans of OER are increasingly facing a problem. While OER started off as free online textbooks, it still costs money to produce these materials, and professors often need guidance finding which ones are high quality. So OER advocates are realizing they need to change their pitch. This week on the EdSurge On Air podcast, we're diving into how the OER movement is changing, and we'll check in with a couple of people on the front lines of the movement to hear from them.

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From here to there: Musings about the path to having good OER for every course on campus

iterating toward openness

I spend most of my time doing fairly tactical thinking and working focused on moving OER adoption forward in the US higher education space. I made what was probably the clearest statement of my vision for the future of learning materials in my Shuttleworth Fellowship application several years ago: My long-term goal is to create a world where OER are used pervasively throughout primary, secondary, and post-secondary schools. Now, make no mistake – OER is a means, not an end.

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Futuring open education at the University of Mary Washington OER Summit

Bryan Alexander

For example, community college adoption of OER depends on the behavior of institutions that most of their students transfer to. The Departments of Education and Labor announce large, long-term grants to support the creation of OER. future of education OER OERSummit

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Futuring open education at the University of Mary Washington OER Summit

Bryan Alexander

For example, community college adoption of OER depends on the behavior of institutions that most of their students transfer to. described two undergraduates’ experiences with OER. This major government push is for both OER and open scholarship.

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OER: Free Like a Beer, or Free Like a Puppy?

Edsurge

Those in the puppy camp argued, with good reason, that free curricula and OER content were hardly free once the related costs and risks were factored in. So the discovery, vetting, and alignment costs inflicted upon the teachers and districts that would try to embrace free and OER content would remain high. And it turns out that a great deal of free and OER content is actually free like a free beer—in fact, like a really good craft beer.

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38 Community Colleges Share What It Takes to Launch an OER Degree Program

Edsurge

And that’s been the driver behind nonprofit Achieving the Dream ’s (ATD) OER Degree Initiative , where 38 U.S. community colleges are creating full degree programs that utilize open educational resources (OER) from start to finish. The program, which kicked off in 2016 , shared its first set of findings today about what faculty are learning it takes to create an OER degree.

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OER Pioneer David Wiley Predicts All Community Colleges Will Dump Traditional Textbooks By 2024

Edsurge

David Wiley, a pioneer of open education resources who co-founded Lumen Learning , a for-profit company that supports OER efforts, sees one place where textbooks could actually be vanquished by openly licensed alternatives: community colleges. Eventually you wound up co-founding your own company, Lumen Learning, and you gave up a tenured professor job at Brigham Young University to do it. I think that the biggest barrier is just that people don’t know that OER exists.

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Open Education – Where do I begin?

Tom Murray

Recently, I had the opportunity to sit down with Andy Marcinek , Chief Open Education Advisor at the US Department of Education (ED), to explore how schools can benefit from Open Educational Resources (OERs) and what is being done in this area nationwide.

How an OER Rookie Dove Deep Into a Zero-Cost Textbook Degree Program

Edsurge

The initiative intends to create degree pathways with courses that only use open educational resources, known as OER, so students don’t have to spend money on class materials. College of the Canyons’ history with OER starts before Anagnonson’s dabble, however. Using OER in those courses, she added, “really started out of necessity.” Anagnoson says she considered using OER before her course was lumped into the Z-degree.

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Lumen Scores $3.75M — and OER Gets a Foot in the Traditional Publishing Door

Edsurge

Open Educational Resources (OER) have yet to cozy up with the more orthodox academics and pushy print publishers of the world. The most recent example occurred this week, when OER company Lumen Learning announced a partnership with one of the country’s largest textbook distributors, Follet Corporation. based company’s $3.75 David Wiley [CEO at Lumen] is the godfather of OER, and he has really been driving the textbook affordability challenge for years,” says McFarlane.

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As Textbook Companies Try New Options, Many Students Say Price Is Biggest Factor

Edsurge

One crucial part of the decision is out of the students’ hands, of course, since it is the professor who decides what textbook or material to assign—or whether to skip commercial textbooks altogether and assign a free or low-cost open educational resource, or OER. Take Perlego , a UK-based company which gives users access to a library of content, including digital textbooks.

In Search of OER’s Future and Edtech’s Missing Evidence at SXSW EDU

Edsurge

Here’s more of what we heard and saw on Monday at SXSW EDU: A Sustainable Future for OER Monday marked day one of Open Education Week, and speakers at a panel used the opportunity to discuss the potential for open educational resources as an alternative to increasingly unaffordable textbooks—as well as the challenges and misconceptions that the open movement still faces. Still, sustainable ways to fund OER into the future remains an open question.

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Why Open Education Resources Matter #GoOpen

The Web20Classroom

It's representatives from the cake batter company. The US Department of Education, Office of Educational Technology has placed heavy emphasis on the c reation and use of OER resources in the classroom. This short video does a great job of explaining why OER matters.

K-12 Dealmaking: HMH Acquires Waggle; National Geographic Launches Pathways; Instructure Gets New CEO

Marketplace K-12

College learning materials publisher FlatWorld releases a customizable textbook; supplemental education company Infobase acquires Credo Reference; OER courseware provider Lumen raises funds. Marketplace K-12 Business Strategy CTE Funding Mergers and Acquisitions OER Open Educational Resources (OER) publishing; K-12 Dealmaking; Textbooks

OERwashing: Beyond the Elephant Test

Doug Levin

I said my piece in the updated article that spurred my original comment (including that the service the company in question provides looks “interesting and valuable,” especially in the context of the K-12 assessment market). The Pro-OER Elephant Test.

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Personalized learning and sound curriculum—two sides of the same coin

The Christensen Institute

Two weeks ago, Education Next published a blog post I wrote about the need to focus demand and funding for open educational resources (OER) on facilitating personalized learning. The nonprofit edtech company Gooru provides a telling example of the importance of cohesive OER curricula.

Higher Ed’s Biggest Pressure Cookers in 2019

Edsurge

You also see partnerships between institutions and companies. A number of companies, including, Walmart, Lowes and Disney, have announced partnerships with universities. In 2019, interoperability for open education resources (OER) is going to be the big technological opportunity. Given the continued momentum with general-ed courses using OER, the question will be what that allows. OER is here to stay, and 2019 will be around what its presence enables.

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The Best E-Book Yet: 40Must-know Web 2.0 Edutools

Kleinspiration

Edutools: A Quick Guide provides insight into large tools such as Twitter and Facebook to smaller new companies like Educreations. OER on Scoop.it} Disclaimer: Web 2.0 OER is a sponsor of this site. OER web 2.0 Web 2.0 Tools in Education Series 40 Must-know Web 2.0

A Thinking Person’s Guide to EdTech News (2017 Week 16 Edition)

Doug Levin

Among them, I’ve updated my site to include a dedicated FAQ on open educational resources (OER). The FAQ is a collaboration of many involved with the movement and includes an OER infographic , suitable for downloading and re-sharing. I’d encourage those interested in the OER movement to subscribe to the bi-weekly OER Digest (a joint project of SPARC and the Student PIRGs ) to stay up to date. Blog EdTech News News news OER

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A Thinking Person’s Guide to EdTech News (2017 Week 16 Edition)

Doug Levin

Among them, I’ve updated my site to include a dedicated FAQ on open educational resources (OER). The FAQ is a collaboration of many involved with the movement and includes an OER infographic , suitable for downloading and re-sharing. I’d encourage those interested in the OER movement to subscribe to the bi-weekly OER Digest (a joint project of SPARC and the Student PIRGs ) to stay up to date. EdTech News News news OER

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K-12 Dealmaking: Hero K12, BV Acquire SchoolMint; Brainly Raises Funds

Marketplace K-12

Tech training company Galvanize has raised $7 million in a funding round led by ABS Capital Partners and University Ventures, and Canadian publisher Nelson has forged yet another education-focused partnership. Marketplace K-12 Curriculum / Digital Curriculum Educational Technology/Ed-Tech International / Global Markets Investment / Venture Capital K-12 Dealmaking Mergers and Acquisitions Open Educational Resources (OER) Public-Private Education Partnerships Startups

Thoughts on Cengage’s MindTap ACE

iterating toward openness

Cengage recently announced a new offering called MindTap ACE that includes OER and is now available in pilot. The video clearly shows Cengage content listed for each topic, followed by some OER. Michael Hansen, Cengage CEO, is quoted in the press release as saying: “far too often, the debate is an either/or of achievement versus price, when the reality is that OER can complement proprietary content.

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Five Top Technology Trends In Special Education

Wisewire

(TNS) — Fueled by technological advances, changing state policies, and a continued push from advocates, ed-tech companies and researchers are crafting new tools and strategies to better serve students with disabilities.

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Open all hours #EDEN15

Learning with 'e's

As with the green movement, openness now has a market value and is subject to new tensions, such as venture capitalists funding MOOC companies. Openness then becomes mainstream, is adapted and adopted by the big companies.

Amazon Education to Launch New Website for Open Education Resources

Marketplace K-12

School administrators learned about the site, to be called Amazon Inspire, during a “Transitioning to OER” session Friday as part of the National Conference on Education of the AASA, the School Superintendents Association, held here. ” Asked by one superintendent about the company’s financial interest in the effort, Joseph said, “Amazon is a big commercial entity and we have to make this sustainable over time. Marketplace K-12 amazon curation OER

The CARE Framework

iterating toward openness

As the title of the document makes explicit, the framework aims to contribute to the conversation about the sustainability of OER: “Toward a Sustainable OER Ecosystem: The Case for OER Stewardship” It’s a valuable contribution to that conversation. Issues of sustainability are absolutely critical to the future of OER and education more broadly, and we spend far too little time talking about them. OER, on the other hand, are non-rivalrous resources.

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The Sleight of Hand of “Free” vs “Affordable”

iterating toward openness

In a recent webinar about OER, organized by one of the major textbook publishers, there was a lot of conversation about whether OER are “free” or “affordable.” Before I begin though, just to be clear, allow me to reaffirm that OER are free, plain and simple, full stop, period. That is literally part of the definition of OER. OER = free + permissions.

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New Partnership Between EBSCO Information Services and Intellus Learning Announced

techlearning

EBSCO Information Services (EBSCO) and Intellus Learning , an educational platform as a service company, have partnered to provide academic libraries with a content curation, assignment, recommendation and analytics tool.

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Wiley to Acquire Knewton’s Assets, Marking an End to an Expensive Startup Journey

Edsurge

Publicly-traded companies like Wiley generally share the price of their acquisitions, unless the financial impact is considered immaterial to the buyer’s bottom line. The New York City-based company has raised more than $180 million in investment capital.

Of Openness, Ecosystems, and Type I and Type II Error

iterating toward openness

Andrew Rickard has written a thoughtful essay on OER, open pedagogy, and commercial interests. While that last may seem counterintuitive (why would a for-profit company pay it’s employees to give their work away?) There will be companies who will violate community norms.

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From Silos to Sharing: Why Are Open Educational Resources Still So Hard to Find?

Edsurge

For over a decade, plenty of time and dollars have been poured into encouraging the use of open educational resources (OER). In 2007 the Hewlett Foundation’s funding helped create OER Commons. Department of Education spearheaded the #GoOpen movement, a collection of efforts to spur educators, publishers and technologists to make OER more available and easily accessible. From my experience, the answers usually are: OER resources are in silos.

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The Evolving Economics of Educational Materials and Open Educational Resources: Toward Closer Alignment with the Core Values of Education

iterating toward openness

Educational materials published under an open license are called open educational resources (OER). When digital educational materials become OER, they are converted back into public goods. Second, OER provide hitherto unknown pedagogical freedom for faculty.

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