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Openness and praxis (#NextGenDL)


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"Openness and praxis: Exploring the use of open educational practices (OEP) in higher education" - presentation for Digital Learning research symposium #NextGenDL, Dublin, 01-Nov-2016

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Openness and praxis (#NextGenDL)

  1. 1. Openness and praxis: exploring the use of open educational practices in higher education Catherine Cronin CELT, NUI Galway @catherinecronin Digital Learning Research Symposium Dublin 01-Nov-2016 #NextGenDL Image: CC0 1.0 cogdog
  2. 2. short summary of 1st phase of my PhD research study: exploring the use of open educational practices (OEP) in higher education
  3. 3. networked educators networked students Physical Spaces Bounded Online Spaces Open Online Spaces Image: CC BY-SA 2.0 Catherine Cronin, built on original Networked Teacher image CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 Alec Couros Higher education
  4. 4. Much is published about benefits of and barriers to openness, and interpretations of openness Relatively few studies use a critical approach to openness; relatively few empirical studies Theoretical context for this study: openness as a sociocultural phenomenon Openness and open education
  5. 5. research questions 1. In what ways do academic staff use open educational practices (OEP) for teaching? 2. Why do/don’t academic staff use open educational practices (OEP) for teaching? Research questions
  6. 6. Image: CC BY-SA 2.0 Marcel Oosterwijk …’open’ signals a broad, de-centralized constellation of practices that skirt the institutional structures and roles by which formal learning has been organized for generations. – Bonnie Stewart (2015)
  7. 7. INTERPRETATIONS of ‘OPEN’ Policy/ Culture Values Practices Activities LEVELS of OPENNESS OEP (Open Educational Practices) OER (Open Educational Resources) Free Open Admission (e.g. Open Universities) IndividualInstitutional Image: CC BY-SA 2.0 Marcel Oosterwijk
  8. 8. Research approach Constructivist grounded theory: inductive, comparative, emergent & open-ended (Strauss & Corbin, 1990); acknowledging social context, subjectivity & interpretive understandings (Charmaz, 2014) Research setting One higher education institution in Ireland Research method Semi-structured interviews with 19 members of academic staff * across multiple disciplines Research methodology * academic staff defined broadly as university staff whose responsibilities include teaching, regardless of job title or terms of employment, e.g. full-time or part-time; permanent, temporary or no contract
  9. 9. • Many academic staff perceive potential risks (for themselves & their students) in using OEP for teaching; some perceive the benefits to outweigh the risks • A minority of participants (8 of 19) used OEP for teaching • 2 levels of ‘using OEP for teaching’: (i) being open, and (ii) teaching openly • 4 dimensions shared by open educators:  balancing privacy and openness  developing digital literacies (self & students)  valuing social learning  challenging traditional teaching role expectations Findings
  10. 10. Balancing privacy and openness Developing digital literacies 4 dimensions shared by educators using OEP for teaching
  11. 11. Balancing privacy and openness Developing digital literacies Valuing social learning Challenging traditional teaching role expectations inner circle (2 dimensions) Networked Individuals both circles (4 dimensions) Networked Educators 4 dimensions shared by educators using OEP for teaching
  12. 12. Balancing privacy & openness Image: CC BY 2.0 woodleywonderworks
  13. 13. will I share openly (e.g. blog, tweet)? who will I share with? (context collapse) who will I share as? (digital identity) will I share this? MACRO MESO MICRO NANO “You’re negotiating all the time.”
  14. 14. • Use of OEP by educators is complex, personal, contextual & continuously negotiated • Attention must be paid to the actual experiences & concerns of academic staff & students (“state-of-the-actual”) • HEIs require open education strategies & policies that recognise the benefits, risks & complexities of openness • HEIs should provide appropriate forms of support for academic staff in 3 key areas:  digital identities; digital literacies; digital capabilities  navigating tensions between privacy & openness  reflecting on roles as educators & researchers in an increasingly networked society/participatory culture Preliminary conclusions
  15. 15. Thank you! Catherine Cronin @catherinecronin Image: CC BY 2.0 visualpanic
  16. 16. Bayne, S., Knox, J., & Ross, J. (2015). Open education: The need for a critical approach. Learning, Media and Technology, 40(3), 247-250. Beetham, H., Falconer, I., McGill, L., & Littlejohn, A. (2012). Open Practices: Briefing Paper. Jisc. Charmaz, K. (2014). Constructing grounded theory (2nd edition). London: Sage Publications. Cottom, T. M. (2015). Open and accessible to what and for whom? [Blog post]. Czerniewicz, L. (2015). Confronting inequitable power dynamics of global knowledge production and exchange. Water Wheel 14(5), 26-28. Edwards, R. (2015). Knowledge infrastructures and the inscrutability of openness in education. Learning, Media and Technology, 40(3), 251-264. Ehlers, U-D. (2011). Extending the territory: From open educational resources to open educational practices. Journal of Open, Flexible and Distance Learning, 15(2), 1–10. Selwyn, N. & Facer, K. (2013). The politics of education and technology: Conflicts, controversies, and connections. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Stewart, B. (2015). Open to influence: What counts as academic influence in scholarly networked Twitter participation. Learning, Media and Technology 40(3), 1-23. Strauss, A. & Corbin, J. (1990). Basics of qualitative research: Grounded theory procedures and techniques (2nd edition). Newbury Park, CA: Sage Publications. Veletsianos, G. (2015). A case study of scholars’ open and sharing practices. Open Praxis, 7(3), 199-209. Veletsianos, G. & Kimmons, R. (2012). Networked participatory scholarship: Emergent techno-cultural pressures toward open and digital scholarship in online networks. Computers & Education, 58(2), 766–774. Weller, M. (2014). The Battle for Open: How openness won and why it doesn’t feel like victory. London: Ubiquity Press. References & resources