OER Africa An introduction Hewlett Grantees Meeting San Francisco CA, USA 29 th  – 31 st  March, 2011
Who we are OER Africa
The OER Concept <ul><li>Educational resources that are freely available for use by educators and learners, without an acco...
Problem / Theory of Action <ul><li>African higher education institutions seriously structurally under-funded for the core ...
Problem / Theory of Action (2) <ul><li>Many higher education programs on the continent have inadequate funds to run  progr...
Problem / Theory of Action (3) <ul><li>Much existing content available to and within African universities based on weak an...
A  Vision  for Higher Education in Africa: <ul><li>Vibrant, sustainable  African higher education institutions that play a...
OER Africa Key Thematic Areas: <ul><li>African Health OER Network </li></ul><ul><li>Teacher Education OER Network </li></u...
Why do we exist? <ul><li>OER Africa  believes that OER can positively support development and capacity of  higher educatio...
Key Assumptions <ul><li>OER holds potential: </li></ul><ul><li>To increase availability of high quality, relevant and need...
Key Assumptions (cont’d) <ul><li>To build capacity in African higher education institutions by providing educators with ac...
Our Operational Approach <ul><li>Wherever possible, to try to build relationships with existing networks of African educat...
IN SUMMARY
OER Africa Activities <ul><li>Structured Institutional Engagement:  </li></ul><ul><li>Initial OER Sensitization & Explorat...
Dispelling Some Myths <ul><li>Content  = education </li></ul><ul><li>Good content will overcome institutional capacity con...
Thank you Jenny Glennie Director,  Saide [email_address]   Catherine Ngugi Neil Butcher Project Director OER Strategist [e...
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OER Africa - Hewlett Grantees Meeting 2011

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OER Africa is an innovative initiative established by the South African Institute for Distance Education (SAIDE) to play a leading role in driving the development and use of Open Educational Resources (OER) across all education sectors on the African continent. Established in 1992, SAIDE’s mission is to increase equitable and meaningful access to knowledge, skills and learning across the African continent, through the adoption of open learning principles and distance education strategies. SAIDE’s recently launched OER Africa initiative brings together all of its OER-related activities under a common conceptual framework. SAIDE is – through its OER Africa initiative – providing a unique opportunity to deploy African expertise to harness the concept of OER to the benefit of education systems on the continent and around the world.

This presentation is (C) Saide and is shared under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/.

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  • OER Africa is an innovative new project, headquartered in Nairobi, under the auspices of SAIDE. Established to play a leading role in driving the development and use of OER in Africa. Provides a common conceptual framework for SAIDE OER-related activities Current funding from the William &amp; Flora Hewlett Foundation and others, to harness African experts and expertise to deploy OER to the benefit of Africa’s higher education systems. Headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya (Rahimtulla Museum of Modern Art) – who in the spirit of openness, had shared this Fisher-Woman who stood for a while in front of our office, with the gov’t of Senegal, to commemorate their biennale art festival. Prepared for the UNESCO by OER Africa
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  • OER Africa - Hewlett Grantees Meeting 2011

    1. 1. OER Africa An introduction Hewlett Grantees Meeting San Francisco CA, USA 29 th – 31 st March, 2011
    2. 2. Who we are OER Africa
    3. 3. The OER Concept <ul><li>Educational resources that are freely available for use by educators and learners, without an accompanying need to pay royalties or licence fees. </li></ul><ul><li>OER is not synonymous with online learning or e-learning; </li></ul><ul><li>Within an African context, it is anticipated that many of the resources produced – while shareable in a digital format (both online and via offline formats such as CD-ROM) – will be printable . </li></ul>
    4. 4. Problem / Theory of Action <ul><li>African higher education institutions seriously structurally under-funded for the core function they are expected to discharge. </li></ul><ul><li>Therefore, corresponding paucity of institutional and individual capacity to teach in many domains of higher education. </li></ul><ul><li>Existing faculty overtaxed in time and ability to teach, reducing time available for ongoing program and materials development. </li></ul>
    5. 5. Problem / Theory of Action (2) <ul><li>Many higher education programs on the continent have inadequate funds to run programmes and meet the educational needs of enrolled students as well as cover the costs of faculty time required both to design and run quality learning experiences. </li></ul><ul><li>Too few learning resources for learners and lecturers in African universities, and many of those available are too expensive to be purchased by universities or students. </li></ul>
    6. 6. Problem / Theory of Action (3) <ul><li>Much existing content available to and within African universities based on weak and largely outmoded educational design principles. </li></ul><ul><li>Limited ICT infrastructure to gain access to up-to-date information available on the Internet and participate in inter-institutional, geographically dispersed collaborative activities. </li></ul>
    7. 7. A Vision for Higher Education in Africa: <ul><li>Vibrant, sustainable African higher education institutions that play a critical role in building and sustaining African societies and economies , by producing the continent’s future intellectual leaders through free and open development and sharing of common intellectual capital. </li></ul>
    8. 8. OER Africa Key Thematic Areas: <ul><li>African Health OER Network </li></ul><ul><li>Teacher Education OER Network </li></ul><ul><li>AgShare (Agriculture OER) </li></ul><ul><li>Foundation OER </li></ul>
    9. 9. Why do we exist? <ul><li>OER Africa believes that OER can positively support development and capacity of higher education systems and institutions across Africa. </li></ul><ul><li>OER Africa is concerned that – if the concept and practice of OER evolves predominantly outside and for Africa – we will not be able to liberate its potential. </li></ul>
    10. 10. Key Assumptions <ul><li>OER holds potential: </li></ul><ul><li>To increase availability of high quality, relevant and need-targeted learning materials; </li></ul><ul><li>To reduce the cost of accessing educational materials; </li></ul><ul><li>To allow adaptation of materials and possibly contribute to enabling learners to be active participants in educational processes; </li></ul><ul><li>To achieve collaborative partnership of people working in communities of practice, preferably across/within institutions; </li></ul>
    11. 11. Key Assumptions (cont’d) <ul><li>To build capacity in African higher education institutions by providing educators with access, at low or no cost, to the tools and content required to produce high quality educational materials. </li></ul><ul><li>To be successful and sustainable, development of OER cannot be a sideline activity within a university. </li></ul><ul><li>OER Africa seeks to facilitate the design of OER that can work immediately and add educational value within the current ICT infrastructure constraints of any participating institutions. </li></ul>
    12. 12. Our Operational Approach <ul><li>Wherever possible, to try to build relationships with existing networks of African education systems, institutions, and educators, and provide support of different kinds to each. </li></ul>
    13. 13. IN SUMMARY
    14. 14. OER Africa Activities <ul><li>Structured Institutional Engagement: </li></ul><ul><li>Initial OER Sensitization & Exploration; </li></ul><ul><li>Policy Reviews to support development supportive institutional environment; </li></ul><ul><li>Materials Audits; </li></ul><ul><li>Proof of Concept Pilots in support of the reinvention of African higher education program curricula ; </li></ul><ul><li>Regular & ongoing communication / relationship-building . </li></ul><ul><li>A one-stop OER online platform – www.oerafrica.org </li></ul>
    15. 15. Dispelling Some Myths <ul><li>Content = education </li></ul><ul><li>Good content will overcome institutional capacity constraints </li></ul><ul><li>OER should be a process of voluntarism </li></ul><ul><li>OER will make education cheaper in the short-term </li></ul><ul><li>Openness automatically equates with quality </li></ul><ul><li>OER is about e-learning </li></ul>
    16. 16. Thank you Jenny Glennie Director, Saide [email_address] Catherine Ngugi Neil Butcher Project Director OER Strategist [email_address] [email_address] This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License .

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