Tag Archives: open edcuation

Lightning Talks #abs50 #abs73 #abs77 #abs112

Title: Writing in Booksprints

Presenter and authors:  Phil Barker, Lorna M. Campbell, Martin Hawksey, CETIS and Amber Thomas, University of Warwick.

Session: LT50, #abs50

A booksprint is a facilitated, highly structured intensive writing process.  This booksprint ran for two and a half days, involved four people and was facilitated by Adam Hyde.  The aim of the sprint was to produce a synthesis and summary of the technical outputs of the UKOER Programmes  Once a chapter is written it’s passed on to another author, not for editing but co-creation.  The initial author does not “own” the chapter.  During this sprint each chapter was re-written by three authors.  The team used Booki.cc open source authoring platform to facilitate the collaborative writing. Booki is much like other collaborative writing applications but incorporates additional tools for ebook creation.   By the end of the two and a half day sprint the team had written a 22,000 word book.  Some of the authors were concerned that the quality of the writing would be compromised but this does not seem to have been the case. Colleagues who have read and reviewed the book have all responded positively to it.

Phil Barker - Writing in Booksprints

Booksprints are ideal for people who have a shared conception of a topic and want to present it together, or alternatively want to present different aspect of a topic.  The content has to be material that is already known to the authors. This is not unlike the situation lecturers are in when they are producing course materials.  Booksprints could be an excellent way to produce educational resources as it’s an inherently open approach to content production.  We talk a lot about sharing educational resources but we don’t talk nearly enough about sharing the effort of creating those resources.  In order to produce really high quality resources we need to share the task of content creation

Into the Wild – Technology for Open Educational Resources can be downloaded free from CETIS Publications.  A print on demand edition is available from Lulu.

For further information on booksprints, see booksprints.net

Title: Libraries, OA research and OER: towards symbiosis?

Presenter: Nick Sheppard, Leeds Metropolitan University

Session: LT73, #abs73

Leeds Metropolitan University have established a blended repository to manage both their research and teaching and learning resources, including OERs. They have been involved in a number of JISC funded projects including the Unicycle UKOER project.  The blended repository was originally based on Intralibrary and they have now implemented Symplectic.  There has been considerable emphasis on developing research management workflows.

Open access to research is changing dramatically in light of Finch and role of institutional repositories and there are synergies with Creative Commons potentially being mandated by Research Councils UK.  Nick also referred to Lorcan Dempsey’s recent posts on “Inside Out” libraries, which focus on the changing role of institutional repositories and libraries.

Nick Sheppard - Closing the institutional UKOER circle

Leeds Met have worked closely with Jorum and Nick said that he believed that the new Jorum API is a game changer which will allow them to close the institutional OER circle.

Title: Why bother with open education?

Presenter and authors: Viv Rolfe & Mark Fowler, De Montfort University

Session: LT77, #abs77

De Montfort have undertake a huge body of OER work since 2009.  OER is incorporated into the institutional strategy for teaching an learning and OER is also is part of  the De Montfort PG cert course.

Despite this, when the team interviewed senior executives about OER, none could name any major institutional projects.  They saw the marketing potential of OER but didn’t appreciate the potential of OERs to enhance learning.  There is a distinct lack of buy in from senior staff and a lot of work is needed to change their mindsets.

Viv Rolfe

Student researcher Libor Hurt undertook a student survey on attitudes to OER.  28% had heard of OERs. OERs are used to supplement lectures and for informal learning.  They are seen as being good for catching up with complex subjects but are less used to study for assessments. Students overwhelmingly share stuff with each other, usually through facebook and e-mail. This is naturally how students work now and could have a major impact on OER down the line.  Students also loved producing OERs, lab videos and quiz MCQs.  However while students are happy to share within the university, they are less happy about sharing their OERs with the public, or those that are not paying fees.  Institutional strategies need to be mindful of this and need to communicate that universities are not giving away whole courses, they are just sharing some of the best bits.  Only a few students cited plagiarism concerns as a reason not to share.  From a student perspective, there is a real tension between paying fees and sharing OERs

It doesn’t matter if everyone in the institution isn’t sharing, as long as there are enough to get momentum going.  However it is important to get senior managers on board, OERs need to be enshrined in institutional  policy.

Title: Taking care of business: OER and the bottom line

Presenters and authors: By John Casey, University of the Arts, Jonathan Shaw & Shaun Hides Coventry School of Art and Design, Coventry University.

Session: LT112, #abs112

Talking about open in a closed education system is a lightening conductor for many thorny issues – power, control, ownership, identity, pedagogy, technical infrastructure, cultures, policy, strategy and business models.   The OER space is a very productive but scary space.

Media is about coproduction and teaching is itself a form of media production.  Coventry fell into open learning with the #Phonar and Creative Activism #creativact courses which opened up their classes.  Rather than having courses led by individuals, they now have teams of people all thinking and operating in different ways. Professional partners have also shown an interest in participating in these courses.   They are thinking about how they conceive the design process of teaching, and are working with students and professional partners to let content evolve.

Shaun Hides - consequences of oer

OER is a political problem, you need to lobby senior management. OERs don’t just open up content, they change institutional practice.  There are many unintended consequences and we need to deal with new educational and economic models of co-production.

Nie, M (2013) Open education policy research: a snapshot from the POERUP project #oer13 #abs47

Dr Ming Nie presented the outcomes from the POERUP project (Policies for OER uptake) at the OER13 conference at Nottingham University, UK the 26th of March 2013 (work done by Ming Nie, Gabi Witthaus and Grainne Conole). POERUP is funded by the European Commission’s Lifelong Learning Programme, partners include: The UK, The Netherlands, France, Italy and Canada. POERUP  build on earlier OER project as OPAL and OLnet and has so far produced country reports and case studies, they have made an inventory of more than 100 OER initiative, with 11 country reports and with 15 minicountry reports in a Wiki and they will produce 7 in-depth case studies and 3 EU-wide policy papers.


POERUP is carrying out research to understand how governments can stimulate the uptake of OER by policy means. POERUP aim to convince decision-makers that in order to be successful with OER, they will have to formulate evidence-based policies based on looking beyond one’s own country, region or continent, beyond the educational sector they look after. POERUP aims to study the end-user–producer communities behind OER initiatives. By comparing in-depth European case-studies to selected non-European ones they will refine and elaborate recommendations to formulate a set of action points that can be applied to ensuring the realisation of successful, lively and sustainable OER communities. Poerup provide education authorities, the research community and OER initiative management with trustworthy and balanced research results, in which feedback from all stakeholder groups has been incorporated and which can be used as standard literature. A specific objective is to help readers in charge of OER initiatives to find ways of incorporating successful features of other initiatives.provide education authorities, the research community and OER initiative management with trustworthy and balanced research results, in which feedback from all stakeholder groups has been incorporated and which can be used as standard literature. A specific objective is to help readers in charge of OER initiatives to find ways of incorporating successful features of other initiatives provide education authorities, the research community and OER initiative management with trustworthy and balanced research results, in which feedback from all stakeholder groups has been incorporated and which can be used as standard literature. A specific objective is to help readers in charge of OER initiatives to find ways of incorporating successful features of other initiatives.

Dr Nie presented three groups of findings:

 Policies Countries with OER policiesThe Netherlands
National strategy and

•Wikiwijs Programme
•Making OER mainstream in every sector of education
•Involving Euro 8 million in public funding in the 2009-2013 period


•A wide range of OER activities occurring in different sectors:
§Universities (OCW, MERLOT, Connexions)
§Non-profit organisations (The Khan Academy, P2PU)
§Private/commercial organisations (iTunes U)
•Between 2011-2014, USD 2 billion government investment aimed at improving education at community colleges through OER
•Recommendations to OER are included as part of educational strategy planning documents, such as the National Education Technology Plan (2010)

Romania has OER in Government Programme:

•The Government Programme for 2013-16: support the innovative integration of Web2.0 and OER in education

OER in educational policies:

•The public policies for ICT integration in the pre-university system:  promotion the use of open/free resources; development and sharing of resources by teachers

South Africa; Active in tertiary education: OCW, OER Africa

•The Department of Higher Education and Training has included the development of an Open and Distance Learning (ODL) policy framework in its strategic plan for 2010–2014, which will include OER.
•The Integrated Strategic Planning Framework for Teacher Education Development requires that all educational resources developed through funded projects have to be released under a CC licence.
•The Southern African Development Community is currently developing an ODL policy and strategic plan that will see the region sharing learning materials at all levels of education.

country is active, egymostly at tertiar level, integration strategies

 Active Countries active in OER activitiesAustralia, New Zeeland, Spain, Poland, UK and Canada
 Driving  Countries driving open education
Italy, Greace, France, Hungary,  while Denmark, Finland and Norway


  • Economic crises; decreas in investment in education & innovation, promotion more challenes
  • opportunities and further work; opportunities- the rise of moocs  and Future learn, Furtehr work; in depth analyses on oer policy and practixce, in depth research into end users of OER

Opportunities and further work

Next phase of the POERUP project will be to investigate OER uptake in differernt sectors and to build consortium countrywise

The rise of MOOCs – a new business model

FutureLearn in the UK

In-depth analysis on OER policies & practices

In-depth research into end-users of OER


Contact info 

Dr Ming Nie: ming.nie@le.ac.uk

Blogging on this post: Ebba Ossiannilsson Lund University, Sweden @EbbaOssian