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. Analyzing the Effectiveness of OER.

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Exploring the Nexus of OER and Educational Technology

Doug Levin

While increased access to the internet and computing devices has been instrumental to the growth and institutionalization of the global movement toward open educational resources (OER), technology choices (often made by educational institutions – and their vendors – on behalf of students) can serve to amplify and/or mute key features of openness. Blog OER infrastructure The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation

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6 Unbeatable Ways To Spot High Quality Open Education Resources (OER)


Since OER came onto the map in the early 2000s, the pool of available resources has grown into a vast ocean. These credible sites offer a wealth of vetted, high quality OER resources, categorized and sorted for easy navigation. Have more suggestions for how to identify high quality OER?

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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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Self as OER


When we look at common definitions of Open Educational Resources or OERs (e.g., But what if we adopt a different perspective, a broader understanding of OERs, which includes the processes and products of open scholarship as valuable, and viable, resources too?

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Some Lessons Learned Supporting OER Adoption

iterating toward openness

The tl;dr: Supporting effective OER adoption at scale has its problems. If OER adoption were to become widespread among the majority of faculty, it became clear that someone would need to do something more than create OER, post it on a website, and give conference talks about it.

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


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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Can OER improve learning outcomes?

IT Bill

The June issue of the International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning (IRRODL) is dedicated to Open Educational Resources (OER). Several of the studies focus specifically on OER and student learning outcomes. For the semester using OER, Chiorescu estimates students collectively saved over $13,500 – spending approximately 75% less than students using the commercial text and software.

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An Obstacle to the Ubiquitous Adoption of OER in US Higher Education

iterating toward openness

I now have no doubt that the overwhelming majority of general education courses and some specific degree programs will transition entirely to OER in US higher ed. Observation 1: We Need Dramatically More OER, and Current Approaches Won’t Get Us There.

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Is Open Content Enough? Where OER Advocates Say the Movement Must Go Next


In response, open educational materials, or OER, have emerged as an alternative to expensive textbooks that disproportionately affect low-income students. OER have been around for more than a decade, and the sheer number of these materials—in the form of textbooks, courses, videos, software and other public-domain resources—are increasingly available online. But despite the excitement, there are obstacles to using OER.

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Help Deliver Better Learning From Textbooks with the OpenStax College “Concept Coach”


OpenStax College is Testing Embedded Coaching Software for Their OER Textbooks … and YOU can Help. Adaptive Learning Technologies Education Technology Success Stories Free Tools & Resources Future of Education Technology Making the case for Education Technologies Open Educational Resources OER adaptive feedback software OER best open college textbooks coaching software embedded in online text books

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


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. He writes software one time and you just sell it, sell it, sell it. And there’s so many nonprofits in the OER space already, and there are only a couple of big funders in the space.

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OERwashing: Beyond the Elephant Test

Doug Levin

What I do want to comment on (in greater than 140 characters) is the practice of ‘openwashing:’ what it is, why I believe not being able to go beyond a pro-OER elephant test for organizations and service providers is untenable in practice, and some thoughts on what we can do about it.

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Does Ownership of Instructional Materials Matter?

Doug Levin

OER remains a recent invention and the relatively large technology investments required to successfully implement a digital content strategy in schools just hadn’t been made in very many places. Blog OER copyright open content procurement public vs. private textbooks

Ed-Tech Software Group Objects to Messages in Feds’ #GoOpen Campaign

Marketplace K-12

Supporters of OER also point out that for resources to meet this definition, it’s not enough that resources branded as “open” be free. The post Ed-Tech Software Group Objects to Messages in Feds’ #GoOpen Campaign appeared first on Market Brief.

Leaving the LMS to Make Course Remixing Possible


Despite the challenges, he argues that if we’re serious about opening up educational resources, we need to do more to make sharing easy: To me, this is what OER for the web should start to reflect. Software Teaching jekyll lms OER open educational resources

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Collections by Destiny


It is quite possible that your catalog is the most expensive piece of software in your building. You can search for Open Educational Resources (OER) within Destiny Discover and immediately add them to your collections. curation Follett OER open source technology

Live Interview Early Today - Wayne Mackintosh on Designing an OER University

The Learning Revolution Has Begun

Join me today, February 11th, for a live and interactive FutureofEducation.com webinar with Wayne Mackintosh on designing an "Open Educational Resources" (OER) university and creating free learning for all students worldwide.

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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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Open all hours #EDEN15

Learning with 'e's

The open source movement emerged, with an emphasis on efficiency, and on the rights to use and modify software and tools. eden15 education learning Martin Weller MOOCs OER open learning Openness Technology

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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Five Top Technology Trends In Special Education


Recently, though, Amplify tweaked its software. Schools’ embrace of free open educational resources, or OER, (which educators may use, adapt, and share as they see fit) has many potential benefits.

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EdTech Acronyms Explained


LMS – Learning Management System (software that runs and manages educational programs). OER – Open Educational Resource (this can be any online materials that are free to use). OSS – Open Source Software (programs online that are free to use).

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How do we talk about “open” in the context of courseware?

iterating toward openness

When we ask whether or not content is open, we mean is it openly licensed (is it OER)? When we ask whether or not a software platform is open, we mean is it openly licensed (is it open source)? Moodle) does not convert it to OER – the content continues to be All Rights Reserved. Likewise, putting OER (e.g., Blackboard) does not convert it to proprietary content – the content continues to be OER. Is the content OER?

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Four game changers

Learning with 'e's

To help achieve this vision, Mackintosh is setting up the OER University and is evangelistic in his elucidation of this concept. OER computer games social media OLPCIt was great to meet and talk with some very creative and inspirational people during my travels in 2011.

Why new technologies often don’t help students

The Christensen Institute

Edtech enthusiasts promote the benefits of innovations such as open educational resources (OER), learning management systems (LMS), and adaptive learning software. The Gooru software and LPS’s learning resources are available for free at gooru.org.

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. Think about our older sibling, the open source software movement. These and many other companies are both active users of open source software and active contributors to open source software.

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


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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Reflections on Open Education and the Path Forward

iterating toward openness

The recently published OER strategy document , as informative as it is, reads more like a list of issues and opportunities than what Michael Feldstein describes as “ rungs on a ladder of ambition.” How do we create a substantial record of successful OER adoption?

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Stereotyping, Behavior, and Belonging in the Open Education Community

iterating toward openness

The open source software side of the open house has absolutely no issue with commercial entities using or contributing to open source software. Their platform for hosting, authoring, and remixing OER is open source and available via GitHub.

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Open, Value-Added Services, Interaction, and Learning

iterating toward openness

There was a lot of discussion at OpenEd17 about the relationship between OER and value-added services like platforms. Reclaim Hosting offers for-fee, value-added services around open source web hosting and publishing software like Cpanel, Installatron, Apache, WordPress, Known, and Omeka.

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More on the Cost Trap and Inclusive Access

iterating toward openness

Back in 2012 – 2013] I was impressed (like many others I’m sure) with how Wiley was able to frame the cost-savings argument around open textbooks to build broader interest for OERs. ” For reasons I have outlined countless times (relating to the pedagogical innovation only possible in the context of permission to engage in the 5R activities), I believe OER adoption is a critically important means to achieving this end. I fear it is OER wanting it both ways.

Reflections on 20 Years of Open Content: Lessons from Open Source

iterating toward openness

In late 1997 and early 1998, the free software movement had two problems that were impeding its growth. First, the way its proponents talked about free software came across as incredibly judgmental and holier-than-thou. ‘Free software is about freedom, perhaps humanity’s grandest ideal, and if you don’t support free software it’s because you don’t sufficiently love and appreciate freedom.’

University of Georgia Kicks Fresh Courseware Pilot Into Gear


Open educational resources (OER) have saved students at the University of Georgia (UGA) nearly $2 million in textbook costs alone over the past three years. Edward Watson, director of UGA’s Center for Teaching and Learning, about a dozen faculty members who teach physiology, history, psychology and sociology have since adopted OpenStax for their courses, while faculty in education and theater use alternative OER platforms.

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Contrary to Popular Belief: A Mid-Year Review of Books

iterating toward openness

Isn’t there a better metaphor for the work we’re doing in OER than “the commons”? Isn’t there a better way to think about OER than as static content like a PDF? And, of course, there is plenty of open source software for those interested in doing this kind of work, including the causaleffect package for R and the DAGitty package for R (also available in-browser). I’ve read some really interesting books this year.

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Casio Launches Classpad.Net Version 1.0


of the software will offer all of the features included in the beta version as well as new additions such as dynamically linked representations, additional types of graphing interactions, improved authoring tools, and more. Where to Find & Curate OER Resources ] Version 1.0

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