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Is Open Education between the Cathedral and the Bazaar?: m?: the promise and pitfalls of borrowing models and metaphors for the OER community. R. John Robertson and Lorna Campbell , Phil Barker, and …

Is Open Education between the Cathedral and the Bazaar?: m?: the promise and pitfalls of borrowing models and metaphors for the OER community. R. John Robertson and Lorna Campbell , Phil Barker, and Li Yuan JISC CETIS
Presentation at OER 11, Manchester, May 11th 2011

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  • 1. Is Open Education between the Cathedral and the Bazaar?: the promise and pitfalls of borrowing models and metaphors for the OER community
    R. John Robertson (1) and Lorna Campbell (1), Phil Barker (2), and Li Yuan (3) JISC CETIS
    Presentation at OER 11, Manchester, May 11th 2011
    1 Centre for Academic Practice and Learning Enhancement, University of Strathclyde, 2 Institute for Computer Based Learning, Heriot-Watt University, 3 Institute for Cybernetic Education, University of Bolton
    This work is licenced under a Creative Commons Licence. Individual Images in this presentation may have different licences.
  • 2. overview
    Some context
    Models and metaphors
  • 3. Context: JISC CETIS
    • JISC CETIS is a JISC Innovation Support Centre. We provide advice to the UK Higher and Post-16 Education sectors on the development and use of educational technology and standards through:
    • 4. participating in standards bodies
    • 5. providing community forums for sharing experience about educational technologies and interoperability standards
    • 6. providing strategic advice to JISC and supporting JISC development programmes
  • 7. Context: UK OER and more
    • UKOER programme: Phase 2 of the HEFCE-funded Open Educational Resources (OER) programme runs between August 2010 and August 2011 (£5 million funding)
    • 8. Other OER work in the UK and globally as well as other related technical developments
  • 9. The impact of models and metaphors
    models and metaphors shape how we think
    for example, the Cloud
  • 10. The book
    Image from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Cathedral-and-the-Bazaar-book-cover.jpg - Original image: Copyright all rights reserved O’Reilly Media
  • 11. models & metaphors in the OER world
    What examples are there of models and metaphors connected to in OER?
    Differences and similarities
    The following is a brief, incomplete, and partially serious look at some popular models and metaphors considering, what they offer and some of their limits and problems
  • 12. The music industry
    OER initiatives can model themselves on some parts of the music industry.
    They can make money by selling services and stuff around the content they give away for free
  • 13. The music industry
    Clear idea of paid for services to generate substantial income based on released content
    Model appears intuitive and accessible to many
    Very few bands can make a sustainable income from this approach
    Those that can are mostly already well established
    Many bands either fail out right or have a very limited shelf life
  • 14. Open source software development
    OER initiatives can model themselves on open source development techniques and communities.
    Using voluntary community input
    Selling services around content
  • 15. Open source software development
    Clear idea of paid for, free, or community-supported services to generate substantial income based on openly released content
    Familiar to educational technologists, developers, and those interested in technology more generally
    Recognised ‘process’ for individuals to build demonstrable experience and reputation
    Rate of failure of OSS projects (failure = unfinished and abandoned buggy code)
    Difficulty in attracting and sustaining community input
    Community input is often entirely self-motivated
    Skills developed are ‘easy’ to test /accredit
  • 16. Open Access initiatives
    OER initiatives can model themselves on successful Open Access efforts in sharing preprints of scholarly works
    Use existing institutional structures, skills, staff
    Publicly funded stuff should be publicly available
    Doesn’t prevent others making money with materials
  • 17. Open Access initiatives
    Relatively successful model set in an academic environment
    Model has sustainability through ties to institutional priorities and use of existing infrastructure
    Research materials and learning materials are very different (perceived value, shelf life)
    Model and relationship with other forms of publishing still in flux
  • 18. The shop window
    OER initiatives can model themselves on shop windows / loss leaders.
    They can provide free access to some content to get people in so that they make you money by paying for other stuff
  • 19. The shop window
    Application of proven commercial models of loss leaders and of advertising and using samples
    Also provides an opportunity to enhance and promote institutional brand
    Model does not need to be open just free
    Always going to be a partial approach to sharing content
    In academic sector, some value of giving away content known, risks unknown as yet
  • 20. The free market
    OER initiatives can offer institutions a competitive edge and allow them to demonstrate the excellence of their courses
  • 21. The free market
    Model partially reflects the context universities are in
    Model will appeal to some universities and senior officers
    Model likely to discourage reuse (we want our content out there)
    Focus on competition likely to shape and restrict what content is released
    The model may most appeal to the strong
  • 22. The commune
    OER and OE initiatives can operate in a self sustaining manner based on relationship rather than ownership
  • 23. The commune
    Model appeals to academics desire to share knowledge and teach
    Model provides a ‘cause’ to join for altruistic reasons, out of commitment to your subject, or as a means to build reputation
    Unclear how model is sustainable
    Unclear how it relates to institutions
    Unclear how model relates to accreditation works outside of institutions
  • 24. The charity
    OER and OE initiatives can fulfil part of an institutions’ social responsibility.
    Institutions can attract charitable donations to promote access to education
  • 25. The charity
    Charitable funding model underpins much of early and large scale work releasing OER
    For institutions, education as charitable act may appeal as it ties into local view of social responsibility and any relevant government policy around access to education (also fits shop window model)
    Foundations have their own priorities and these have largely shifted from funding OER release
    Appeal of charitable nature of OER is likely to be outweighed by required investment for many institutions
  • 26. The lifetime member’s plan
    Alumni subscribe to their institution after graduation/ or sponsor a particular course.
    As materials are released they get ongoing access to services around the OER or some form of acknowledgement
  • 27. The lifetime member’s plan
    Alumni are an important source of additional income for universities
    Ongoing access to resources for professional development may also act as a ‘shop window’
    Role of alumni and their support for institution varies widely (by country and by institution)
    Largely untested as a sustainable approach?
  • 28. The cute kitten
    Everyone likes cute kittens – OER are like cute kittens – everyone should like them
    People make lolcats for the fun of it and share them; people may make OER for the same reasons
  • 29. The cute kitten
    Everyone likes cute kittens and the idea of OER is likely to have similar mass appeal
    Even if something is good that does not make it sustainable
    There may be a limit to how many kittens people need
    It can be very hard to find a particular kitten
  • 30. The Reformation
    OER initiatives are like the Reformation – they offer a radical overhaul of education and the development of a flexible and individually oriented (rather than institutional) process of education
  • 31. The Reformation
    Many of those leading initiatives to develop OER do want radical change
    Many OER initiatives treated suspiciously at first by institutions
    Ties OER into an event that changed society
    Potential to be a divisive metaphor for reasons unconnected to education
    Likely to put off institutions
    Blatantly ignores any historical understanding and unforeseen outcomes
  • 32. To think about
    What models and metaphors are you basing your OER initiative on?
    How are you describing it when talking about it to academics/ managers/ others?
    What are the implications of your models and metaphors for sustainability?
  • 33. Questions