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Lane, A.B. (2006) Widening Participation in Life Long Learning through Open Educational Resources, EU eLearning Conference 2006, Helsinki, Finland, 4-5 July 2006

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  1. 1. United Kingdom Open University Open Content Initiative Professor Andy Lane, Director http://oci.open.ac.uk
  2. 2. Widening Participation In Lifelong Learning through Open Educational Resources <ul><li>EU eLearning Conference 2006, Helsinki </li></ul>
  3. 3. Mission of the UK Open University <ul><li>The Open University is open to people, places, methods and ideas. </li></ul><ul><li>It promotes educational opportunity and social justice by providing high-quality university education to all who wish to realise their ambitions and fulfil their potential. </li></ul><ul><li>Through academic research, pedagogic innovation and collaborative partnership it seeks to be a world leader in the design, content and delivery of supported open and distance learning. </li></ul><ul><li>Source: http://www.open.ac.uk/about/ou </li></ul>
  4. 4. UKOU Open Content Initiative <ul><li>“ The philosophy of open access and sharing knowledge is a wonderful fit with the founding principles of The Open University and with the University’s very strong commitment to open educational access and widening participation. The University will be developing forms of open content e-learning which will reach less experienced learners and, we hope, encourage an appetite for further learning.” </li></ul><ul><li>Professor Brenda Gourley Vice-Chancellor of The Open University </li></ul>
  5. 5. Goals of the Project <ul><li>To make some of The Open University’s distance learning materials freely accessible in an international web-based open content environment and, in so doing, to advance open content delivery method technologies by: </li></ul><ul><li>Deploying leading-edge learning management tools for learner support; </li></ul><ul><li>Encouraging the creation of non-formal collaborative learning communities; and </li></ul><ul><li>Enhancing international research-based knowledge about modern pedagogies for higher education. </li></ul><ul><li>http://oci.open.ac.uk </li></ul>
  6. 6. Open Content Initiative Project Stages <ul><li>Stage 1 Planning and preparation (Oct 05 to Mar 06) </li></ul><ul><li>Stage 2 Implementation, research and evaluation (Apr 06 to Mar 08) </li></ul><ul><li>Stage 3 Sustained development (Apr 08 - ?) </li></ul>
  7. 7. OU Stage 2 goals <ul><li>Utilise Moodle as the VLE platform; </li></ul><ul><li>Develop two complementary sites: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>the Learning Space – a supported open learning site for learners; and </li></ul></ul><ul><li>the Lab Space – a supported open ‘sense-making’ site for creators </li></ul><ul><li>Have 900 learning hours in the Learning Space for initial launch in October 2006 rising to 5400 hours at the end of two years; </li></ul><ul><li>Make a further 2700 hours of material available within the Lab Space at the end of two years. </li></ul><ul><li>Add a range of open source collaborative learning tools to the Lab Space devised by our Knowledge Media Institute. </li></ul>
  8. 8. Learning Space <ul><li>Structure based on ‘read only’ content supplemented by informal learning tools in Moodle such as wikis, discussion groups, bookmarking, etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Deliver through Moodle as resources plus activities </li></ul><ul><li>Mix of web authored, audiovisual and print authored content as units of study </li></ul><ul><li>Range of media asset types and activities </li></ul><ul><li>Units of size 3 to 15 hours user engagement </li></ul><ul><li>Inclusion of quality assured material from the Lab Space </li></ul>Sense-making tools
  9. 9. Lab Space <ul><li>Supply ‘read only’ content from Learning Space </li></ul><ul><li>Supply less well structured content from archives </li></ul><ul><li>Allow retrieval, editing, revision </li></ul><ul><li>Allow re-depositing of new version </li></ul><ul><li>Allow depositing of material generated by other creators </li></ul>
  10. 10. Sense making tools <ul><li>Collaborative social computing tools </li></ul><ul><li>Fostering learning communities </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Educators </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Learners </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Other Users </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Giving teaching and learning a social life </li></ul>
  11. 11. Planned outcomes of Stage 2 <ul><li>Enhanced learning experiences for users of open content delivery; </li></ul><ul><li>Greater involvement in higher education by under-represented groups and empowerment for various support networks that work with them; </li></ul><ul><li>Enhanced knowledge and understanding of open content delivery, how it can be effective, and the contribution it can make to further development of e-learning; </li></ul><ul><li>Enhanced understanding of sustainable and scaleable models of open content delivery. </li></ul>
  12. 12. Major Challenges <ul><li>Empowering people to make use of an information rich world through appropriate learning technologies and support networks; </li></ul><ul><li>Opening up the opportunities for non-formal learning as part of a life long learning agenda; </li></ul><ul><li>Understanding better how to reach hard-to-reach groups and tackle educational disadvantage; </li></ul><ul><li>Managing quality assurance and intellectual property rights creatively and moving thinking forward on these; </li></ul><ul><li>Creating a sustainable system for creating and supporting open educational resources. </li></ul>