Enabling legislation to support Open Education in European policy


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Using recent experience from VISCED, the POERUP project proposes an approach of how to map OER/OEP policy recommendations into the structure of the EU's Rethinking Education policy document released in late November 2012

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Enabling legislation to support Open Education in European policy

  1. 1. Enabling legislation to support OEP: a realistic view from POERUP (and informed by VISCED) Paul Bacsich, Sero Excellence for Open Education OEB Workshop, Berlin, Germany 28 November 2012 1
  2. 2. POERUP Partners1. Sero (coordinator)2. University of Leicester3. Open University of the Netherlands4. University of Lorraine5. SCIENTER6. EDEN7. Athabasca University (Canada) 2
  3. 3. Context and rationale• Over ten years of the OER movement• Hundreds of OER repositories worldwide• Lack of uptake by teachers and learners• Shift from development to community building and articulation of OER practice 3
  4. 4. Focus of POERUP• Stimulating the uptake of OER through policy• Building on previous initiatives (such as OPAL, Olnet and SCORE)• Through country reports (24)• And case studies (7), evaluating successful OER communities• Linked to ODS, IIEP, IPTS and non-EU initiatives 4
  5. 5. Eventual outputs (mid 2014)• Inventory of more than 100 notable OER initiatives (focus is HE and schools, also FE, but not informal learning or corporate training)• 11 country reports and 13 mini-reports• 7 in-depth case studies• 3 EU-wide policy papers• 7 options brief packs for EU nations/regions 5
  6. 6. UK Country Report (interim)• Funding mainly from government (JISC) – top-down• Funding mainly on production/producers, little on end- users or impact on learning• Mainly HE, a bit of FE little school-based• Almost all in England• Lots on cascading and transferring of experience• Most England HE institutions now have an OER repository or at least an open access repository• But most institutions don’t have an OER strategy 6
  7. 7. Policy context in Europe1. UNESCO OER Declaration2. EU policies, especially now Rethinking Education3. National policies (not many)4. Sub-national policies (home nations, Länder, autonomous communities, provinces, states)5. Municipal/county/regional policies6. Groupings of institutions7. My Institution8. My Department9. My Course!! 7
  8. 8. Rethinking Education (COM 669/2) – 2.1• Building skills for the 21st century – Transversal and basic skills • transversal skills • particularly entrepreneurial skills • demand for STEM related skills is still high • foundation or basic skills achieved by all… • language learning needs particular attention • Vocational skills • Increasing the quality of vocational skills requires the development of world-class VET systems… – Vocational skills • world-class VET systems… (!!) 8
  9. 9. Rethinking Education (COM 669/2) – 2.2: learners• Stimulating open and flexible learning: Improving learning outcomes, assessment and recognition – Achievement should be driven by learning outcomes… • …and the power of assessment needs to be better harnessed – Qualifications should open as many doors as possible… • … and academic recognition can lead the way• Tap into the potential of ICT and Open Educational Resources for learning – The digital revolution brings important opportunities for education… – …and it is time to scale-up use of ICT in learning and teaching… – …to exploit freely available knowledge. 9
  10. 10. Rethinking Education (COM 669/2) – 2.2: teachers• Supporting Europes teachers – Teachers face rapidly changing demands… • ....which require a new set of competences for teachers, teacher educators and education leaders … • ...and calls for strong action to support new approaches to teaching and learning... • ...and the quality of teaching is a critical issue in higher education as well 10
  11. 11. Rethinking Education (COM 669/2) – 2.3• Funding education – Investment in education and training is key to increasing productivity and economic growth and is a concern for all… • …and the focus should be to maximise efficient investment at all levels of education… • …with cost-sharing in VET and higher education an option to help meet that goal• Partnerships – Partnerships can provide a platform for targeting the right skills - if they are actively supported (public/private) 11
  12. 12. So how to produce recommendations Which are feasible? 12
  13. 13. A view from VISCED• VISCED has reviewed virtual schools across Europe• There are no more than 100• In no country do more than 1% of children attend a virtual school• In almost all European countries there are 3 or less such schools 13
  14. 14. VISCED policy recommendations• Had to take account of “facts on the ground”• As well as aspirations• VISCED is an analytic consortium, not a lobby group for virtual schools or virtual schooling• Recommendations have to be realistic• This can make them unexciting! 14
  15. 15. VISCED recommendations Group 11. The Commission should remove any unnecessary bureaucratic impediments which inhibit the development and sustainability of virtual schools and colleges. 15
  16. 16. VISCED Recommendations Group 21. The Commission and individual governments should raise awareness as to the value and impact of virtual schooling in meeting education and social policies.2. The Commission and individual governments should raise awareness of the potential of virtual schooling in helping students maintain timely progression through the curriculum and in supporting students who require additional revision, acceleration or have special educational needs.3. The Commission and individual governments should encourage virtual schooling options in traditional schools and colleges as a strategy for reducing early leaving.4. The Commission and individual governments should encourage virtual schooling options as a means of increasing the uptake of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics subjects (STEM). 16
  17. 17. VISCED Recommendations Group 31. The Commission and individual governments should support schools and teachers to develop the skills essential for the delivery of high-quality virtual schooling.2. The Commission and individual governments should encourage and advise schools and colleges to exploit Open Educational Resources (OERs).3. The Commission and individual governments should exploit the potential for virtual schooling to drive internet take-up, promote the information society, e-government services and improve student (and parent) ICT skills. 17
  18. 18. Consider the UNESCO OER recommendations In the light of Rethinking Education and VISCED best practice And in the light of The tiny percentage of learning hours generated by OER and The small percentage of institutions involved in OER and The limited venture funding going into OER 18
  19. 19. UNESCO OER a-ca) Foster awareness and use of OER – Promote and use OER to widen access to education at all levels, both formal and non-formal, in a perspective of lifelong learning, thus contributing to social inclusion, gender equity and special needs education. Improve both cost-efficiency and quality of teaching and learning outcomes through greater use of OER.b) Facilitate enabling environments for use of Information and Communications Technologies (ICT) – Bridge the digital divide by developing adequate infrastructure, in particular, affordable broadband connectivity, widespread mobile technology and reliable electrical power supply. Improve media and information literacy and encourage the development and use of OER in open standard digital formats.c) Reinforce the development of strategies and policies on OER – Promote the development of specific policies for the production and use of OER within wider strategies for advancing education. 19
  20. 20. UNESCO OER d-fd) Promote the understanding and use of open licensing frameworks – Facilitate the re-use, revision, remixing and redistribution of educational materials across the world through open licensing, which refers to a range of frameworks that allow different kinds of uses, while respecting the rights of any copyright holder.e) Support capacity building for the sustainable development of quality learning materials – Support institutions, train and motivate teachers and other personnel to produce and share high-quality, accessible educational resources, taking into account local needs and the full diversity of learners. Promote quality assurance and peer review of OER. Encourage the development of mechanisms for the assessment and certification of learning outcomes achieved through OER.f) Foster strategic alliances for OER – Take advantage of evolving technology to create opportunities for sharing materials which have been released under an open license in diverse media and ensure sustainability through new strategic partnerships within and among the education, industry, library, media and telecommunications sectors. 20
  21. 21. UNESCO OER g-hg) Encourage the development and adaptation of OER in a variety of languages and cultural contexts – Favour the production and use of OER in local languages and diverse cultural contexts to ensure their relevance and accessibility. Intergovernmental organisations should encourage the sharing of OER across languages and cultures, respecting indigenous knowledge and rights.h) Encourage research on OER – Foster research on the development, use, evaluation and re- contextualisation of OER as well as on the opportunities and challenges they present, and their impact on the quality and cost- efficiency of teaching and learning in order to strengthen the evidence base for public investment in OER. 21
  22. 22. UNESCO OER i-ji) Facilitate finding, retrieving and sharing of OER – Encourage the development of user-friendly tools to locate and retrieve OER that are specific and relevant to particular needs. Adopt appropriate open standards to ensure interoperability and to facilitate the use of OER in diverse media.j) Encourage the open licensing of educational materials produced with public funds – Governments/competent authorities can create substantial benefits for their citizens by ensuring that educational materials developed with public funds be made available under open licenses (with any restrictions they deem necessary) in order to maximize the impact of the investment. 22
  23. 23. Keep these aspects in mindFor the interactive session 23
  24. 24. Further information http://www.poerup.info/This publication is protected by a Creative Commons License(Attribution-Noncommercial*-Share Alike 3.0)*broadly-based in the delivery chain 24