The innovative capacity of oer

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My speech at the UNESCO Workshop 'Taking the Open Educational Resources beyond the OER Community. Policy and Capacity' in Paris on 1 December 2010

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The innovative capacity of oer

  1. 1. THE INNOVATIVE CAPACITY OF OER Dirk Van Damme Head of the Centre for Educational Research and Innovation, OECD/EDU
  2. 2. OECD/CERI • Internationalisation & trade in higher education – UNESCO/OECD Guidelines for Quality Provision in Cross-Border Higher Education • University Futures: higher education in 2030 • Knowledge Management and Systemic Innovation in education • New Millennium Learners • Skills and Education for Innovation • AHELO: Assessing Higher Education Learning Outcomes 2
  3. 3. OER • A vibrant development with a formidable multitude of small and large projects • A community • A movement, part of a broader global movement towards ‘openness’ • A campaign • A romantic idea, even an ideology? • A paradox? 3
  4. 4. OER • Huge capacities to – Bring knowledge and learning to disadvantaged learners, communities, institutions and countries – Improve access and success in learning – To diversify and innovate teaching and learning arrangements – To increase quality in teaching and learning – To balance hegemonic relations in global higher education – To help knowledge flowing! 4
  5. 5. Policy challenges • Awareness raising and advocacy • Communities and networking • Capacity development • Sustainability • Quality assurance • Copyright and licensing (UNESCO/IIEP survey 2008) 5
  6. 6. Policy challenges • I really applaud and congratulate UNESCO to take the lead in the global development of OER – International higher education at the crossroads: several, sometimes conflicting scenarios and developments • Cf OECD/CERI University Futures scenarios 6
  7. 7. GLOBAL/INTERNATIONAL MARKETSTATE LOCAL/NATIONAL Serving Local Communities Higher Education Inc. New Public Responsibility Open Networking 7 National Education Legislation National Consumer Protection Global regulation? GATS
  8. 8. Policy challenges • I really applaud and congratulate UNESCO to take the lead in the global development of OER – International higher education at the crossroads: several, sometimes conflicting scenarios and developments • Cf OECD/CERI University Futures scenarios – OER is part of a broader movement towards a new global governance model of (higher) education, characterised by networking and collaboration – OECD is very happy to join and contribute 8
  9. 9. Critical issues and risks • Sustainable business models – Short lifecycle of projects – Risks of intra-institutional development modes • Captured in romantic optimism of pioneers – Need to scale, leverage and mainstream • Risk of staying in supply-driven mode – Skills of users, risks of consumerist uses • Assessment of efficacy and impact – Need to develop strong evaluation culture – Many success stories, many disappointments as well: learn from failures 9
  10. 10. Way forward for OER • OER should define itself as systemic innovation of the global (higher) education system – Scale up from project-based production level towards an OER-oriented ecosystem – Need for strong national and international policies – The global knowledge economy needs balancing the exaggerated IP regulation, in order to secure the free flow of knowledge and innovation – Technology is a fantastic enabler, but not the raison d’être nor the purpose 10
  11. 11. Critical questions • Isn’t it counterproductive to see OER and ‘openness’ in general as a correction or even in opposition to the dominant modes of IP regulation of knowledge – Future educational innovation will combine and integrate open and regulated/protected modes – ‘Openness’ is seen by the OECD in its Innovation Strategy as a valuable source of innovation and economic growth alongside IP regulation 11
  12. 12. The emergence of an innovative education industry Growth of patent applications: Worldwide new education technologies (1990-2006) USA Japan EU27 Korea China 0 100 200 300 400 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 Education technologies by year - Main Countries (MA(3) - Patent Families only) USA Japan EU27 Korea China
  13. 13. Critical questions • Is OER focusing on innovative content, new skills needs and innovative pedagogies? – Some fear that OER is developing (and thereby reconfirming) more traditional content – Operating under more traditional pedagogical approaches – Whereby more innovative content-pedagogy educational developments are reserved under restricted access regimes 13
  14. 14. 21st Century Skills • Cf. Microsoft-Intel-Cisco ATC21S project 14 Creativity and innovation Critical thinking Problem solving Communication Collaboration Information fluency Technological literacy
  15. 15. Critical questions • From an educational perspective, is it recommendable or even conceivable to separate content from pedagogical design and delivery? – Some fear that the development of OER will counteract other educational innovations, aiming at more active and constructivist learning – It makes little sense to make content publicly available and protect educational design under strict protection 15
  16. 16. Critical questions • How to move from ‘resources’ to a more comprehensive perspective on teaching/learning interaction, including – Curriculum: we need to reflect on innovative curriculum – Educational delivery, involving technology – Learning outcomes: what do we expect learners to achieve and do they realise these? – Assessment of learners – Efficiency and effectiveness of education 16
  17. 17. Conclusion • OER is best defined as a systemic innovation in the global education and knowledge system – Balancing (not opposing) IP regimes – Innovating and improving education globally – Taking a comprehensive approach to education – Connecting to other innovations – And in doing so, providing an enormous added value to the global knowledge economy • But such perspective puts many new challenges and questions on the table! 17
  18. 18. 18 Thank you ! dirk.vandamme@oecd.org www.oecd.org/edu/ceri

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