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From theory to practice: can openness improve the quality of OER research?


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"From Theory to Practice..." was presented by Beck Pitt at OpenEd 2014, Washington DC, USA during November 2014.

This presentation was developed from the slide deck presented at CALRG 2014 at The Open University (UK) during Summer 2014.

Published in: Education
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From theory to practice: can openness improve the quality of OER research?

  1. 1. From theory to practice: can openness improve the quality of OER research? OpenEd 2014 Beck Pitt Bea de los Arcos Rob Farrow The Open University (UK)
  2. 2. "Common Good" on Graffiti Wall at OKFest14, Berlin (CC-BY 4.0 Beck Pitt) • Open methodologies • Open licensing • Open data • Open Dissemination • Open Collaboration
  3. 3. What is the OER Research Hub?
  4. 4. • 2-year open research project funded by William & Flora Hewlett Foundation • Aiming to build the most comprehensive picture of OER impact • Open collaboration model across different educational sectors • Global reach but with a USA focus • Fellowship Scheme • Researching openness in the open CC-BY 4.0 Bea de los Arcos #oerrhub @OER_Hub
  5. 5. Our Hypotheses Keyword Hypothesis Performance OER improve student performance/satisfaction Openness People use OER differently from other online materials Access OER widen participation in education Retention OER can help at-risk learners to finish their studies Reflection OER use leads educators to reflect on their practice Finance OER adoption brings financial benefits for students/institutions Indicators Informal learners use a variety of indicators when selecting OER Support Informal learners develop their own forms of study support Transition OER support informal learners in moving to formal study Policy OER use encourages institutions to change their policies Assessment Informal assessments motivate learners using OER
  6. 6. Open Collaboration
  7. 7. Project Co-PILOT
  8. 8. Agile Working
  9. 9. Photo Credits: Mozfest13 Beck Pitt CC-BY 4.0 Sprints • Open to experimentation with different ways of working • Improve quality of research and project outputs by collectively focusing on and progressing outstanding tasks as a group • Repurpose agile working techniques and share experiences via blogging
  10. 10. Open Licensing
  11. 11. Researching in the Open: Researcher Pack Research Instruments available in the open: • Ethics manual • Interview and Focus Group Questions • Survey Questions • Open Consent Forms
  12. 12. Researching in the Open: Sharing Practices and Methodologies “Building Communities” Photo credit: Beck Pitt CC-BY Screenshots of OER Research Hub and ROER4D websites • Creating synergies and building relationships • Improves practice and methodologies • Continuous evaluation and reflection on our practice
  13. 13. Dissemination: Sharing Evidence and Research Practice in the Open
  14. 14. Openness facilitates impact and builds networks Blog posts on research, collaborations & findings Slideshare and YouTube Open Access Journals Infographics OER Impact Map Research instruments, methodology & reports Twitter and Facebook Scoop.It & Storify
  15. 15. OER Impact Map
  16. 16. Picture credits: Bea de los Arcos CC-BY OER Impact Map
  17. 17. Open and Collaborative    Researcher Pack #openresearch
  18. 18. • Four-week course (with badge!) • Improving quality and sharing experiences: community feedback and review • 139 participants from around the world • 3937 page views of course materials during three week sign-up period • Course openly available for others to use and develop
  19. 19. Mozilla at Mozfest14 CC-BY 4.0 Beck Pitt Benefits and Challenges of Open Benefits of Openness: • Open Collaboration and agile practices enable responsiveness • Sharing openly continuously improves the quality of research and outputs • Sharing and collaborating builds and extends networks • Openness as a habit and virus: the more we practiced openness the more open the project became • Community is central to openness Challenges of Openness: • Preparation of data and other documents in useable formats can take time • Flexibility Vs. ensuring data is comparable • Sampling and control groups
  20. 20. Thanks for Listening! Twitter: @BeckPitt, @celTatis, @philosopher1978, @OER_Hub
  21. 21. References/Bibliography McAndrew, P. Becoming more agile researchers: experiences from researching OER (June 2013, (Accessed 6 June 2014, 12.25) Perryman, L-A. Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known: nine surveys for OER Research (June 2013, for-oer-research/) (Accessed 6 June 2014, 12.23) SPARC Open Access to Scholarly and Scientific Research Articles Factsheet (Accessed 3 November 2014, 16:29) Trotter, H. ROER4D Question Harmonisation Process (May 2014, (Accessed 6 June 2014, 12.26) All photos CC-BY 4.0 OER Research Hub unless otherwise stated “OER-archery” at CNX2013 Photo credit: Beck Pitt, CC-BY
  22. 22. in service of The Open University