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Illuminating the Impact of Open Educational Resources

Submitted by on December 5, 2012 – 4:06 pmNo Comment

  • Watch a video clip that demonstrates the amazing viral nature and lifecycle of OER.
  • Enroll in a Faculty eCommons Micro-MOOC to learn more about incorporating OER into your teaching.
  • Learn about pioneering uses of OER in case studies from the University of Ghana and The Open University.

As educators, we’re reading more each day about the seismic shift Open Educational Resources (OER) are causing in education. We won’t know the full impact until the unfolding history of OER has been written (and shared, adapted, and redistributed). To put our current understanding in a broader perspective for you, we’ve provided a few illuminating resources. The Viral Nature of OER Through a story about an early OER, this beautifully animated video brings to life the potent viral nature of Open Educational Resources. A miraculous chain of events was triggered by one professor who simply sought to increase access to his climate change course by uploading it online: (Click the image to see the video.)

Source: Open Educational Resources from BIDtv on Vimeo. As the video colorfully illustrates, OER are teaching, learning, and research materials that can be reused, redistributed, remixed, and revised, by anyone, anywhere. Because access is so widespread, and so collaborative, OER improve the quality and reduce the cost of education.


Professional Development Workshop:  Learning Open Education Resources (LOER) So you’re inspired by the idea of OER, and you’re ready to incorporate more of them into your own teaching. Where would you find the most effective and reliable OER databases? How would you ensure the quality of the OER you consider? The Faculty eCommons is facilitiating a Micro-MOOC, a 3-week professional development workshop, where we will explore the ever-expanding OER landscape. This Micro-MOOC will:

  • Prepare you to find, choose, and use OER wisely
  • Allow you to participate in the community’s efforts to map the location and ensure the quality of OER

In this MOOC, you’ll be able to self-organize your participation according to your learning goals, prior knowledge and skills. It runs until December 20, so enroll now, and encourage anyone you feel may benefit to join us as well. Institutional OER Health Initiative At the University of Ghana  In a country where health issues are pervasive and severe, but access to education and to training in healthcare has been limited, the OER concept is showing great promise as a solution to problems that have lingered for decades. This slideshare documents a collaborative OER Health Initiative and describes the challenges, the lessons, the accomplishments, and the next steps after implementation.

If OERs can help to solve grave issues like disease and famine, imagine what they can do to bridge the knowledge divide among children, or increase access to higher education?   OER Case Study on Pedagogical Resources from The Open University England’s Open University has a long history of using OERs to engage with learners around the world. This case study outlines the broad range of public engagement activities using media technologies undertaken by The Open University (OU). It explains how both open access and licensing of content is influencing the ways in which a university can propagate knowledge. It also discusses how different channels and social media technologies are shaping the way that engagement happens.

Share Your Experiences: Have you bookmarked any online resources that enhanced your understanding of Open Educational Resources or inspired you to learn more about them? Feel free to share them in the discussion thread below. Who knows how far your recommendations may travel?
By Robin Bartoletti

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