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Life cycle of an open online course designed as an OER: The case of Facilitating Online

Tony Carr, Nicola Pallitt
Centre for Innovation in Learning and Teaching (CILT), University of Cape Town

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Life cycle of an open online course designed as an OER: The case of Facilitating Online

  1. 1. Life cycle of an (open) online course designed as an OER: The case of Facilitating Online Tony Carr @tony_emerge Nicola Pallitt @nicolapallitt OE Global Conference, Cape Town 10 March 2017
  2. 2. Overview & aims ‘Home grown’ approaches to open education in Africa are emerging Metaphor of life cycles for thinking about the evolution & iterations associated with an open course Facilitating Online has a current timeline of 9 years as an OER & online course
  3. 3. Aim To share… Our approach to course design & collaborative practice to enable open education in Africa & beyond Timeline of the evolution of the course thus far & a way of thinking about the life cycle of a course developed as an OER Discuss learning design of OER-based courses & continuous improvement using open education approaches While this case is set in Africa, the model presented may raise useful questions for anyone thinking about the evolution of open courses in other contexts.
  4. 4. Within the broader landscape…
  5. 5. About the course Facilitated learning activities Structured synchronous & asynchronous participation (entirely online, but not entirely flexible): 1 Preparatory week; 5 Activity weeks; 2 Consolidation weeks Requires up to 8 hours of participation per week 8-week course
  6. 6. Facilitating Online : Course Model & Principles
  7. 7. Aimed primarily at change agent educational technologists & educators within the African Higher Educational sector What about the course is open? OER Course Leader’s Guide - course content is accessible Course models and promotes use of open practices Course is taught using open source institutional LMS What about the course is not open? Application & selection criteria, free to public but not private sector How open is this?
  8. 8.
  9. 9. Enabling re-use: Open practices & courseware Platform agnostic materials enable easy reuse and adaptation Often OERs enter the world through repositories and little is known about their impact beyond the number of downloads In this case the course model, its facilitation approach and materials have been reused, revised or adapted in several contexts
  10. 10. Course timeline - Development (2008-2009)
  11. 11. Course timeline
  12. 12. Online course Life cycle metaphor OER Open Courseware
  13. 13. Online course site
  14. 14. Learning design
  15. 15. Literature on learning design, reuse & (open) online courses Adopting a learning design methodology may provide a vehicle for enabling better design and reuse of Open Educational Resources (OERs) (Conole & Weller, 2008) Design lifecycle (Conole 2010) for OERs “Research regarding open educational resources focuses on methods of producing OER, methods of sharing OER, and the benefits of OER. Significant issues relating to OER remain unresolved...” (Wiley, Bliss & McEwen, 2013)
  16. 16. Iteration & innovation Changes 2014-2016: Larger class sizes to support more peer facilitation (little like MOOCs but not at MOOC scale) New tools like eg. lessons easier to present materials than wiki, video embed (LMS upgrades) Periodically updated progress reports to course participants Third party tools (Padlet, Google Drive, WhenIsGood) Change in Social Network activity from Facebook to LinkedIn (2015)
  17. 17. Approach Questions for learning designers of open online courses & OERs to think about: Does your toolbox match your context? How flexible are the tools you’ve selected? What might designing for sustainability mean for your course? Does this include re-use? How can you design for & support learning journeys that go beyond the course objectives? (just meeting objectives are not enough) What drives your OER - what do you & others believe is worth
  18. 18. Discussion Iterations take time - can take many life cycles to achieve reuse? When is the height of an OER’s ‘career’ and can it ‘die’? Roadmap for designing an (open) online course - is this the same roadmap as designing a ‘reuser’ experience or designing for both from the start?