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Emerging OER Discipline

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Looking at how the OER discipline has grown in terms of research themes

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Emerging OER Discipline

  1. 1. Different Aspects of the Emerging OER Discipline Martin Weller
  2. 2. Background OER Hub Based in IET at the OU Researching different aspects of OER Hewlett – OER Research Hub 2012-2015 GO-GN – OER PhD research network (go-gn.net) OEPS – Open Educational Practice Scotland
  3. 3. Interesting questions What does OER research look like now? How has it changed? Is there anything generic we can take from how this field developed?
  4. 4. OER history Late 90s – learning objects 80s-90s – Open source licences 2001 – Creative Commons 2001 – MIT OpenCourseWare mid-2000s – OER repositories, projects, funding 2012 – UNESCO OER declaration 2011 onwards – open textbook movement in N. America 2012 – Year of the MOOC(!)
  5. 5. OER as part of… Open education Open data Open research Open scholarship Open educational practice Open pedagogy
  6. 6. Method OER Knowledge Cloud (https://oerknowledgecloud.org/) Content analysis of abstracts 2015 (most recent full year - 119) 2007 (1st year with double digits – 24)
  7. 7. Content analysis Berg (2007): Qualitative vs quantitative – both Latent vs manifest content – Manifest Units of analysis – abstract Category development – deductive
  8. 8. Totals Year No publications Year No Publications 2001 3 2008 58 2002 1 2009 67 2003 0 2010 153 2004 3 2011 121 2005 7 2012 167 2006 9 2013 205 2007 26 2014 183
  9. 9. 2007 Category No Publications Project case study 6 Technical 6 OER as subject 11 Research with impact data 3
  10. 10. 2015 Category No Publications Project case study 8 Technical 7 OER as subject 18 Research with impact data 7 Policy 15 Practitioner 11 OER in developing nations 2 MOOCs 36 Pedagogy 9 Open data/practice 6
  11. 11. Categories (1) Project case study –reports on the findings of a particular case study, or announces the implementation of a project. Technical focus on the technical specification of a particular project such as an OER repository OER as subject - focused on the OER field itself, the nature of openness, the direction for OER, suggestions for adoption, etc Research with impact data –undertakes evaluation of the impact of OER implementation, using educational research methodology such as control groups, pre and post test, etc. Policy - report on existing OER policies, the need for policy or standardized approaches, national frameworks, etc.
  12. 12. Categories (1) Practitioner – the use of OER by practitioners in a particular context, for example teachers or librarians. OER in developing nations – the use of OER in the context of developing nations eg projects such as TESSA MOOCs –This group could be categorized as an emerging field of its own, or MOOCs could be interpreted as OER and reclassified under the other categories. Pedagogy – several articles focus specifically on the possible impact of OER on pedagogy, or as a vehicle for change in teaching practice. Open data/practice/access- an intersection with other aspects of open practice that have varying degrees of relevance to the OER community..
  13. 13. Similar work Zancanaro, Todesco & Ramos (2015) bibliometric analysis: - Theoretical discussions - the conceptualization of the term Open - Quality –issues related the quality of OER, how this can be ensured, or measured - Barriers to use – addresses problems in the adoption of OER such as formal recognition - Open education – provides an overview of open education in general - Incentive policies – policies for OER adoption - Survey - detailing results of research carried out on the use of OER - Technology – detailing technical aspects of OER such as metadata and interoperability - Type – particularly the area of open textbooks - Sustainability –the sustainability of OER projects - Production – different models of OER production, sharing and dissemination - Open licenses – copyright issues and Creative Commons licenses
  14. 14. Caveats (the questionable methodology slide) OER Knowledge Cloud is not exhaustive and can be swayed The content analysis requires each unit to be placed in an exclusive category, but inevitably some will be related to two or three categories. Labeling the categories was largely a subjective process.
  15. 15. What does OER research look like now? Practitioner is a large group MOOC contamination Impact research is quite rare
  16. 16. How has it changed? Four categories from 2007 still relevant Reflective practice Move away from project case studies Policy reflects maturing of field Diverging into other areas?
  17. 17. Is there anything generic we can take from how this field developed? Arises from impact of networked technology Changes are attitudinal and technical A variation in an existing domain that emerges as distinct Characterized by specialist conferences, journals, large-scale projects, investment, policy and a sustainable community Initially driven by enthusiasts and advocates Diversification of research themes and interested parties
  18. 18. A dodgy analogy Urban Renaissance in 18th Century Characterized by uniform house design, street planning, a growing middle-class population and increased leisure facilities Requires number of conditions including economic prosperity, the desire for social status, and the pre-existence of towns to build upon Analogous to the development of new educational areas? Common features: the arrival of new commercial interests, the establishment of new conferences and journals, the development of a new research agenda and identifiable communities.
  19. 19. Refs & Links Edtechie.net Oerhub.net @mweller @oer_hub Berg, B. (2007) Qualitative research methods for the social sciences. 6th ed. Boston, MA: Allyn and Bacon Borsay, P. (1989) The English Urban Renaissance: Culture and Society in the Provincial Town 1660-1770. Oxford University Press Zancanaro, A., Todesco, J., & Ramos, F. (2015). ‘A bibliometric mapping of open educational resources’. The International Review Of Research In Open And Distributed Learning, 16(1).

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