OCWC2014 Presentation on POERUP

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The overall aim of POERUP is to carry out research to understand how governments can stimulate the uptake of OER by policy means, not excluding financial means but recognising that in the current …

The overall aim of POERUP is to carry out research to understand how governments can stimulate the uptake of OER by policy means, not excluding financial means but recognising that in the current economic situation in Europe the scope for government financial support for such activities is much less than it has been in some countries.

We do not want to formulate policies based on informal discussions. We want the policies to be evidence-based policies – and based on looking beyond – beyond one’s own country, region or continent, and beyond the educational sector that a ministry typically looks after.

One aspect of this is to foster the potential of new technologies for enhancing innovation and creativity, in particular by researching policies designed to foster a lifelong learner mindset in learners – leading to curiosity, creativity and a greater willingness to consume OER.

We also want to 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 foresee hidden traps and to find ways of incorporating successful features of other initiatives. POERUP is about dispassionate analysis, not lobbying.

We aim to provide policymakers and education authorities above institutions, but also OER management and practitioners within institutions, with insight into what has been done in this area, plus a categorization of the different major initiatives and the diverse range of providers. Policy advice is needed explicitly to address Issues like critical thinking in the use of new technologies/media, risk awareness, and ethical/legal considerations. Our review will provide practical and concrete information in order to contribute towards a more informed approach in the future.

POERUP is doing this by:

• studying a range of countries in Europe and seen as relevant to Europe, in order to understand what OER is going on, and why it is going on (or might soon cease to be going on) – and taking account of reports from other agencies studying OER in other countries;

• researching case studies of various end-user–producer communities behind OER initiatives in order to 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;

• developing informed ideas on policy formulation using evidence from our own and other studies, our own experience in related projects and ongoing advice from other experts in the field.

Finally, these results are being disseminated and maintained in a sustainable way.

The project has a web site http://www.poerup.info and a wiki http://poerup.referata.com for country reports and other outputs. This wiki will be sustained after the end of t

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  • 1. POERUP: Policies for OER Uptake Paul Bacsich, Sero OCWC 2014 Ljubljana Slovenia 23-25 April 2014
  • 2. POERUP Partners 1. Sero (coordinator) 2. University of Leicester 3. Open University of the Netherlands 4. University of Lorraine 5. SCIENTER 6. EDEN 7. Athabasca University (Canada) 2
  • 3. Context and rationale • Over ten years of the OER movement • Hundreds of OER repositories worldwide • Lack of uptake by teachers and learners • Shift from development to community building and articulation of OER practice 3
  • 4. Focus of POERUP • Stimulating the uptake of OER through policy • Building on previous initiatives (such as OPAL, Olnet and SCORE) • Through country reports (target 24, now 30) • And case studies, evaluating successful OER communities • Linked to ODS, IIEP, IPTS and non-EU initiatives 4
  • 5. POERUP timescales revised • Bid submitted March 2011 • Preparatory and related studies: 2011 • Project started: November 2011 • Project funded period ends: June 2014 • Final reports due: end August 2014 5
  • 6. This presentation • Summarises our conclusions, with examples • Along with some thoughts about the process and future projects • Within the context of the European Commission’s Opening Up Education policy recommendations 6
  • 7. POERUP Achievements • Inventory of more than 400 OER initiatives worldwide (120 notable) • 30 country reports – 4 more coming – most being updated • 7 case studies including Wikiwijs, ALISON (Ireland), OER U (global) and FutureLearn (UK mostly) • 3 EU-level policy documents for universities, VET and schools • In progress: 8 policy documents for UK (x3), Ireland, France, Netherlands, Poland – and Canada KA3 ICT
  • 8. Country reports Then we shall look at policy interventions (no time to discuss initiatives or case studies in this talk)
  • 9. Country reports (done by POERUP) • 30 in all, at least one from each continent • Europe: 15 out of 28 EU states; and Norway • Americas: US, Canada, Mexico, Argentina • Asia: Gulf States, Thailand • Africa: South Africa • Australia and New Zealand 9
  • 10. Country reports – conclusions • Many countries are doing very little OER stricto sensu • Even fewer have policies about or even directly relevant to OER • Yet across the world there are perhaps 500 OER initiatives currently active – or recently active 10
  • 11. Country reports – issues • Relied on other projects that were claiming to be doing OER reports, tried to avoid overlap • Worked out well with OER Asia • Worked out less well with other projects • Did not take account of countries entering the OER scene late or reports going out of date 11
  • 12. Country reports – solutions • Currently updating all our country reports • Also reporting on Ireland, Germany, and Brazil • Also doing rapid continental “helicopter” scans across Africa, Hispanic America and Asia – Focussing just on initiatives and policies not context – And there will be a map, plus data supplied to collaborators in “common format” – specific collaboration with eMundus 12
  • 13. Policy interventions To foster OER and activities that in turn will foster OER
  • 14. All our policy work since autumn 2013 has taken account of the EU initiative: Opening up Education http://europa.eu/rapid/press- release_IP-13-859_en.htm
  • 15. Innovation The key but only at scale
  • 16. Innovation – innovative institutions • Since the era of building open universities there has been little visible activity in creating innovative institutions
  • 17. New-build institutions opening up education
  • 18. Innovation – recommendation • The European Commission should set up a competitive innovation fund to set up one new “European” university each year for the next 5 years with a commitment to “low-system-cost” online education around a core of open content. • OUE: Support innovative teaching and learning environments, including through the use of structural and investment funds (ESIFs) • OUE: Establish a European Hub of Digitally Innovative Education institutions... complemented by a specific European Award of Digital Excellence
  • 19. Accreditation and quality “Outside the rules” or “Within the (new) rules”
  • 20. Accreditation of prior learning • The Commission should recommend to universities that they should to improve and proceduralise their activity on APL (Accreditation of Prior Learning) including the ability to accredit knowledge and competences developed through online study and informal learning, including but not restricted to OER and MOOCs • Large Member States should set up an Open Accreditor if their HE sector is diverse with small institutions – OUE: Ensure that transparency and recognition instruments for formal education are adapted to new forms of learning including validation of skills acquired online 20
  • 21. Thank you for listening Paul Bacsich For the POERUP team http://www.poerup.info http://poerup.referata.com/wiki/Main_Page Email paul.bacsich@sero.co.uk