Successfully reported this slideshow.
We use your LinkedIn profile and activity data to personalize ads and to show you more relevant ads. You can change your ad preferences anytime.
Ethics, openness & the 
future of education 
Dr. Rob Farrow 
The Open University, UK 
#opened2014
OER Research Hub 
ethics and educational research 
traditional and ‘guerrilla’ approaches 
open ethics: future perspective...
OER Research Hub 
ethics and educational research 
traditional and ‘guerrilla’ approaches 
open ethics: future perspective...
OER Research Hub 
ethics and educational research 
traditional and ‘guerrilla’ approaches 
open ethics: future perspective...
OER Research Hub 
ethics and educational research 
traditional and ‘guerrilla’ approaches 
open ethics: future perspective...
OER Research Hub 
ethics and educational research 
traditional and ‘guerrilla’ approaches 
open ethics: future perspective...
OER Research Hub 
ethics and educational research 
traditional and ‘guerrilla’ approaches 
open ethics: future perspective...
#oerrhub 
@philosopher1978
OER Research Hub 
developing an ecology of sharing
OER Research Hub 
• Research project at The Open University (UK) 
• Funded by William & Flora Hewlett Foundation for two y...
Project Co-PILOT
OER Impact Map 
http://oermap.org
OER Evidence Report 
http://tin2y0u14rl.com/o 
erevidence
ethics and educational research 
perspectives
https://www.flickr.com/photos/lemasney/5211610431/
The field of ethics (or moral philosophy) involves 
systematizing, defending, and recommending 
concepts of right and wron...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jD-YCDE_5yw 
Post World War II, war crimes 
trials produces Nuremberg 
Code (1947) for res...
Principles of Ethical Research 
• Exercise control over research process 
• Ethical research design, sampling, data collec...
Ethics in OER Research Hub (1/2) 
Considerations in line with ‘traditional’ research: 
• Compliance with UK Data Protectio...
Ethics in OER Research Hub (2/2) 
New dimensions resulting from greater openness: 
• collaborative research design; agile ...
‘guerrilla’ research 
research in the open
Open Research 
When you make 
research open, 
novel and 
interesting things 
happen to the 
research process
Open Research: Process 
“Open research is research conducted in the spirit of free and open source 
software. Much like op...
Guerrilla Research 
Weller (2013) describes open research as ‘guerrilla’ research: 
• No permissions needed (open access, ...
http://blog.ouseful.info/2009/04/02/visualising-mps-expenses-using-scatter-plots-charts-and-maps/ 
In 2009 Tony Hirst prod...
Coal Run (Ohio) Map Mashup 
Mapping mash-up overlaid city 
boundaries, water supply lines, 
and house occupancy by race 
S...
The Copyright and Rights in Performances (Research, Education, Libraries and 
Archives) Regulations 2014 (UK) provides new...
Guerrilla Research: Ethical Issues 
Open licensing allows a ‘DIY’ approach to content creation – can the same be done 
for...
open ethics 
future perspectives
• Education is increasingly data-driven (nb. 
learning analytics) 
• By definition, many data sets too large / 
complex to...
Open Education: Heaven 
• Minimising the cost of high-quality education 
• Affordable access worldwide 
• Open access publ...
José Luiz Bernardes Ribeiro / CC-BY-SA-3.0 
Open Education: HeLL 
• Normalization of surveillance 
• Risk of identity thef...
To find out whether the psychological states of 
its users can be manipulated Facebook ran a 
study which involved showing...
the OER movement 
is fundamentally ethical
the OER movement 
is fundamentally ethical 
… right?
http://vivrolfe.com/uncategorized/opened14-socio-ethical-stances-of-moocs/
Philosophers usually distinguish… 
• Meta-ethics (the meaning and use of ethical language) 
• Normative Ethics (principles...
Philosophers usually distinguish… 
• Meta-ethics (the meaning and use of ethical language) 
• Normative Ethics (principles...
Philosophers usually distinguish… 
• Meta-ethics (the meaning and use of ethical language) 
• Normative Ethics (principles...
Philosophers usually distinguish… 
• Meta-ethics (the meaning and use of ethical language) 
• Normative Ethics (principles...
Philosophers usually distinguish… 
• Meta-ethics (the meaning and use of ethical language) 
• Normative Ethics (principles...
Duties 
the right rules & obligations 
Consequences 
desirable / defensible outcomes 
Virtues 
development; personal excel...
Duties 
the right rules & obligations 
Wikimedia Commons / NotFromUtrecht
Morality and open education 
“When educational materials can be electronically copied and transferred around 
the world at...
Morality and open education 
Paris Declaration on OER (2012) builds on the previous ten years of OER 
advocacy as well as ...
“Publicly funded resources should be openly licensed resources”
Consequences 
desirable / defensible outcomes 
Wikimedia Commons / NotFromUtrecht
We tend to advocate for OER and open education by referring to the consequences 
and outcomes of adoption: 
• Reducing mar...
Virtues 
development; personal excellence; achieving potential 
Wikimedia Commons / NotFromUtrecht
https://paradigm.presswarehouse.com/books/BookDetail.aspx?productID=215136
Openness in education 
The digital nature of OER and the particular methods of producing and using them 
represent a consi...
Morality and open education 
• Are we morally obliged to release OER? For its own sake? For the sake of 
improving access ...
advice and guidance 
being ethical
OERRH Ethics Manual: Guidance 
It’s not possible to anticipate every possible effect of openness, in unmonitored spaces: 
...
Summary of Guidance 
• Just because it’s legal doesn’t mean that it is ethical 
• Check terms & conditions thoroughly if y...
ethical, practical reason developed through reflective experience 
phronēsis 
phronēsis 
aristotle 
MacIntyre (1985) argue...
https://www.flickr.com/photos/psd/2892270262/
Thanks for listening! 
oerresearchhub.org 
oermap.org 
rob.farrow@open.ac.uk 
@philosopher1978
Join us in building understanding of open education 
School of Open 
course on 
#openresearch 
OERRH Evidence Report 
OERR...
Ethics, Openness & the Future of Education
Ethics, Openness & the Future of Education
Ethics, Openness & the Future of Education
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in …5
×

Ethics, Openness & the Future of Education

1,081 views

Published on

What difference does openness make to ethics? This session will examine this question both from the perspective of research into OER and the use of open resources in teaching and learning. An outline of the nature and importance of ethics will be provided before the basic principles of research ethics are outlined through an examination of the guidance provided by National Institutes of Health (2014) and BERA (2014). The importance and foundation of institutional approval for OER research activities is reiterated with a focus on underlying principles that can also be applied openly.

I argue that with a shift to informal (or extra-institutional) learning there is a risk that we lose some clarity over the nature and extent of our moral obligations when working outside institutional frameworks – what Weller (2013) has termed "guerilla" research activity. Innovations of this kind could be free of licensing permissions; they could be funded by kickstarter or public-private enterprise; or they could reflect individuals working as data journalists. But we might also speak of "guerilla" education for innovations taking place on the fringes of institutional activity – from using social media to going full-blown "edupunk" (Groom, 2008). These innovations which employ variants of opennesss can also bring out morally complex situations.

I show how the principles underlying traditional research ethics can be applied openly while noting that, whether working within or outside institutions, there is almost no existing guidance that explains the ethical implications of working openly. Similar issues are raised with MOOC, which operate outside institutions but while drawing on institutional reputations and values. With this in mind I sketch out scenarios we are likely to encounter in the future of education:

- Issues around privacy, security and big data
- Intellectual property conflicts
- Ensuring fair treatment of class students and equivalent online students
- Meeting obligations to content creators
- The ethical status of MOOCs and their obligations to their students
- Moral dimensions of open licenses
- The ethics of learning analytics and the data it produces

I argue that, while models for ethical analysis have been proposed (e.g. Farrow, 2011) more attention should be paid to the ethics of being open. I conclude with an examination of the idea that we have a moral obligation to be open, contrasting prudential and ethical approaches to open education. At the heart of the OER movement, I argue, is a strong moral impulse that should be recognized and celebrated rather than considered the preserve of the ideologue: openness is not reducible to lowering the marginal cost of educational resources. Openness is a diverse spectrum and to leverage its true potential we need to reflect deeply on how technology has the power to challenge the normative assumptions we make about education.

Published in: Education
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

Ethics, Openness & the Future of Education

  1. 1. Ethics, openness & the future of education Dr. Rob Farrow The Open University, UK #opened2014
  2. 2. OER Research Hub ethics and educational research traditional and ‘guerrilla’ approaches open ethics: future perspectives ethics of the OER movement advice & guidance
  3. 3. OER Research Hub ethics and educational research traditional and ‘guerrilla’ approaches open ethics: future perspectives ethics of the OER movement advice & guidance
  4. 4. OER Research Hub ethics and educational research traditional and ‘guerrilla’ approaches open ethics: future perspectives ethics of the OER movement advice & guidance
  5. 5. OER Research Hub ethics and educational research traditional and ‘guerrilla’ approaches open ethics: future perspectives ethics of the OER movement advice & guidance
  6. 6. OER Research Hub ethics and educational research traditional and ‘guerrilla’ approaches open ethics: future perspectives ethics of the OER movement advice & guidance
  7. 7. OER Research Hub ethics and educational research traditional and ‘guerrilla’ approaches open ethics: future perspectives ethics of the OER movement advice & guidance
  8. 8. #oerrhub @philosopher1978
  9. 9. OER Research Hub developing an ecology of sharing
  10. 10. OER Research Hub • Research project at The Open University (UK) • Funded by William & Flora Hewlett Foundation for two years • Tasked with building the most comprehensive picture of OER impact • Organised by eleven research hypotheses • Collaboration model works across different educational sectors • Global reach but with a USA focus • Openness in practice: methods, data, dissemination oerresearchhub.org #oerrhub
  11. 11. Project Co-PILOT
  12. 12. OER Impact Map http://oermap.org
  13. 13. OER Evidence Report http://tin2y0u14rl.com/o erevidence
  14. 14. ethics and educational research perspectives
  15. 15. https://www.flickr.com/photos/lemasney/5211610431/
  16. 16. The field of ethics (or moral philosophy) involves systematizing, defending, and recommending concepts of right and wrong behavior. Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy http://www.iep.utm.edu/ethics/
  17. 17. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jD-YCDE_5yw Post World War II, war crimes trials produces Nuremberg Code (1947) for research involving human subjects Belmont Report (1979) sets out the principles of ethical research & still acts as basis for experimental research Criticised by Shore (2006) for failure to recognize difference (gender, ethnicity, culture, geography, etc)
  18. 18. Principles of Ethical Research • Exercise control over research process • Ethical research design, sampling, data collection • Respect for the autonomy and self-determination of research participants • Informed (and freely given) consent • Privacy & confidentiality (including data management) • Fairness, impartiality & transparency • Non-maleficence (do no harm) • Beneficence (maximise benefits of research)
  19. 19. Ethics in OER Research Hub (1/2) Considerations in line with ‘traditional’ research: • Compliance with UK Data Protection Act (1998) and the USA’s Protection of Human Subjects (45 CFR 46) • Risk assessment • Free recruitment of research participants • Institutional approvals (IRB) as needed • Informed consent • Data collection / storage in compliance with policy of The Open University (UK)
  20. 20. Ethics in OER Research Hub (2/2) New dimensions resulting from greater openness: • collaborative research design; agile working in partnership needs to maintain epistemological integrity • third-party data; respecting the consent provided at the time • open release of research data; issues around privacy and security of data; obligations to participants; wording of consent form • open licensing of research instruments; responsibility to set standards for research excellence • open dissemination: blogging, open access publication, School of Open course, duty to share findings widely
  21. 21. ‘guerrilla’ research research in the open
  22. 22. Open Research When you make research open, novel and interesting things happen to the research process
  23. 23. Open Research: Process “Open research is research conducted in the spirit of free and open source software. Much like open source schemes that are built around a source code that is made public, the central theme of open research is to make clear accounts of the methodology freely available via the internet, along with any data or results extracted or derived from them. This permits a massively distributed collaboration, and one in which anyone may participate at any level of the project.” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open_research
  24. 24. Guerrilla Research Weller (2013) describes open research as ‘guerrilla’ research: • No permissions needed (open access, open licensing, open data) • Quick set up, no business case (or funding) required • Allows for creativity, interdisciplinarity unconstrained by tradition • Using free tools and social media • Combination of existing open data • Alternative funding models (e.g. Kickstarter / enterprise)
  25. 25. http://blog.ouseful.info/2009/04/02/visualising-mps-expenses-using-scatter-plots-charts-and-maps/ In 2009 Tony Hirst produced a map of British MP expense claims which was picked up and used by The Guardian newspaper This was produced quickly using open technologies and led to further maps and other ways of exploring data stories through openness
  26. 26. Coal Run (Ohio) Map Mashup Mapping mash-up overlaid city boundaries, water supply lines, and house occupancy by race Showed almost all the white households in Coal Run have water service, while all but a few black homes do not $11m in damages from the city of Zanesville and Muskingum County (2008) http://www.dispatch.com/content/stories/local/2014/02/16/bittersweet-water.html
  27. 27. The Copyright and Rights in Performances (Research, Education, Libraries and Archives) Regulations 2014 (UK) provides new rights for data mining of copyrighted content • Non-commercial use only • Likely to need to even more complex use cases because data need not be licensed openly Similar legislation elsewhere…?
  28. 28. Guerrilla Research: Ethical Issues Open licensing allows a ‘DIY’ approach to content creation – can the same be done for research? Unconventional research activities are not always institutionally recognised, giving rise to a number of issues: • Ownership of intellectual property • Lack of institutional guidance • Institutional recognition of professional / scholarly activity • Risk of losing connection with the original context that produced the data • Lack of clarity about whether consent can be assumed for public data • Ethics of big / open data
  29. 29. open ethics future perspectives
  30. 30. • Education is increasingly data-driven (nb. learning analytics) • By definition, many data sets too large / complex to process using traditional methods and require teams of specialists • Potentially laden with ethical significance (e.g. open health data for diagnostics has the potential to relieve human suffering) • Implications for privacy, informed consent, autonomy • Grey areas around public-private: social networks; MOOC • Will anonymity cease to exist?
  31. 31. Open Education: Heaven • Minimising the cost of high-quality education • Affordable access worldwide • Open access publication • Freedom over the use of intellectual property • Open data • Predictive analytics • Fully integrated with online life • Individualized instruction • Accurate personalized feedback • Social justice • Techno-utopianism
  32. 32. José Luiz Bernardes Ribeiro / CC-BY-SA-3.0 Open Education: HeLL • Normalization of surveillance • Risk of identity theft, fraud or other data abuse • Enforced culture of transparency • Audit culture • Loss of freedom • Lack of informed consent • Decontextualized judgments about learner performance • Abuse of educator / learner IP • Commericalization of open data • Predetermining the chances of student success • Loss of intersubjective human relationships • Cultural monism • Techno-centrism
  33. 33. To find out whether the psychological states of its users can be manipulated Facebook ran a study which involved showing users either only ‘positive’ or ‘negative’ status updates and seeing whether this would affect their mood (it did). Expert opinion is divided over the acceptability of Facebook’s actions. • What are our expectations of use of online information? • Can we reasonably consent to our own harm? • What role is technology playing in the pedagogical situation; of what should we be aware? • Mirror with ethical responsibilities around distance learning Facebook: ‘Emotional Contagion’ Study
  34. 34. the OER movement is fundamentally ethical
  35. 35. the OER movement is fundamentally ethical … right?
  36. 36. http://vivrolfe.com/uncategorized/opened14-socio-ethical-stances-of-moocs/
  37. 37. Philosophers usually distinguish… • Meta-ethics (the meaning and use of ethical language) • Normative Ethics (principles/standards that regulate conduct) Deontological ethics (duties, rules & obligations) Consequentialist ethics (consequences, outcomes) Virtue ethics (development; personal excellence) • Applied Ethics (analysis of specific moral controversies) Wikimedia Commons / NotFromUtrecht
  38. 38. Philosophers usually distinguish… • Meta-ethics (the meaning and use of ethical language) • Normative Ethics (principles/standards that regulate conduct) Deontological ethics (duties, rules & obligations) Consequentialist ethics (consequences, outcomes) Virtue ethics (development; personal excellence) • Applied Ethics (analysis of specific moral controversies) Wikimedia Commons / NotFromUtrecht
  39. 39. Philosophers usually distinguish… • Meta-ethics (the meaning and use of ethical language) • Normative Ethics (principles/standards that regulate conduct) Deontological ethics (duties, rules & obligations) Consequentialist ethics (consequences, outcomes) Virtue ethics (development; personal excellence) • Applied Ethics (analysis of specific moral controversies) Wikimedia Commons / NotFromUtrecht
  40. 40. Philosophers usually distinguish… • Meta-ethics (the meaning and use of ethical language) • Normative Ethics (principles/standards that regulate conduct) Deontological ethics (duties, rules & obligations) Consequentialist ethics (consequences, outcomes) Virtue ethics (development; personal excellence) • Applied Ethics (analysis of specific moral controversies) Wikimedia Commons / NotFromUtrecht
  41. 41. Philosophers usually distinguish… • Meta-ethics (the meaning and use of ethical language) • Normative Ethics (principles/standards that regulate conduct) Deontological ethics (duties, rules & obligations) Consequentialist ethics (consequences, outcomes) Virtue ethics (development; personal excellence) • Applied Ethics (analysis of specific moral controversies) Wikimedia Commons / NotFromUtrecht
  42. 42. Duties the right rules & obligations Consequences desirable / defensible outcomes Virtues development; personal excellence; achieving potential Wikimedia Commons / NotFromUtrecht
  43. 43. Duties the right rules & obligations Wikimedia Commons / NotFromUtrecht
  44. 44. Morality and open education “When educational materials can be electronically copied and transferred around the world at almost no cost, we have a greater ethical obligation than ever before to increase the reach of opportunity. When people can connect with others nearby or in distant lands at almost no cost to ask questions, give answers, and exchange ideas, the moral imperative to meaningfully enable these opportunities weighs profoundly. We cannot in good conscience allow this poverty of educational opportunity to continue when educational provisions are so plentiful, and when their duplication and distribution costs so little.” http://www.irrodl.org/index.php/irrodl/article/view/469/1001 Caswell, Henson, Jensen & Wiley (2008)
  45. 45. Morality and open education Paris Declaration on OER (2012) builds on the previous ten years of OER advocacy as well as article 26 of the Universal declaration on human rights (UDHR, 1948) and article 13.1 of The International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (UN, 1966) in recognition of “the right of everyone to education” http://www.irrodl.org/index.php/irrodl/article/view/469/1001
  46. 46. “Publicly funded resources should be openly licensed resources”
  47. 47. Consequences desirable / defensible outcomes Wikimedia Commons / NotFromUtrecht
  48. 48. We tend to advocate for OER and open education by referring to the consequences and outcomes of adoption: • Reducing marginal cost of resources • Efficacy • Improve access • Institutional reputation • Building networks
  49. 49. Virtues development; personal excellence; achieving potential Wikimedia Commons / NotFromUtrecht
  50. 50. https://paradigm.presswarehouse.com/books/BookDetail.aspx?productID=215136
  51. 51. Openness in education The digital nature of OER and the particular methods of producing and using them represent a considerable challenge to existing practice in education: • Implications for proprietary methods of publication, dissemination • Evolving pedagogical roles & responsibilities • Relation to academic career development • Correct use (and attribution) of intellectual property • Blurring boundaries between private and ‘connected’ life • Building consensus and influencing policymakers
  52. 52. Morality and open education • Are we morally obliged to release OER? For its own sake? For the sake of improving access to education as a moral good? • Are we morally obliged to release data openly? Can there be adequate safeguards? Is the risk too great? • Education as common good supported indirectly by OER, open data, etc. • The moral significance of inaction
  53. 53. advice and guidance being ethical
  54. 54. OERRH Ethics Manual: Guidance It’s not possible to anticipate every possible effect of openness, in unmonitored spaces: • Understanding the potential for collected information to be personally, professionally or commercially sensitive • Policies should make it clear when data can be shared with others and under what conditions, licence, etc. • Though open, dissemination strategies should respect existing agreements with those who have been recorded or provided data • Openly available third party materials should be used fairly. • Data mined from social networks may need to be treated with caution
  55. 55. Summary of Guidance • Just because it’s legal doesn’t mean that it is ethical • Check terms & conditions thoroughly if you’re at all unsure on legal side • Think about the control you exercise over the process and how to use influence. • CC-BY-NC/ND license options may give more control over data, but are arguably less open – is there a balance to be struck? Open versions of familiar principles: • Minimize harm • Ensure that consent is as informed as it reasonably can be • Respect for privacy and personhood
  56. 56. ethical, practical reason developed through reflective experience phronēsis phronēsis aristotle MacIntyre (1985) argues that the unpredictability of human being necessitates focus on practical experience
  57. 57. https://www.flickr.com/photos/psd/2892270262/
  58. 58. Thanks for listening! oerresearchhub.org oermap.org rob.farrow@open.ac.uk @philosopher1978
  59. 59. Join us in building understanding of open education School of Open course on #openresearch OERRH Evidence Report OERRH Ethics Manual Contribute to OER Impact Map

×