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Journal Article

The Role of Open Access and Open Educational Resources: A Distance Learning Perspective  pp97-105

Stylianos Hatzipanagos, Jon Gregson

© Feb 2015 Volume 13 Issue 2, ICEL2014, Editor: Paul Griffiths, pp57 - 148

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Abstract

Abstract: The paper explores the role of Open Access (in licensing, publishing and sharing research data) and Open Educational Resources within Distance Education, with a focus on the context of the University of London International Programmes. We repo rt on a case study where data were gathered from librarians and programme directors relating to existing practice around Open Access; the major constraints in using Open Educational Resources and the main resource implications, when adopting Open Educatio nal Resources, were also investigated. Our aim was to (a) raise awareness and understanding of what is possible to achieve in higher education by embracing the Open Access movement (b) identify next steps and actions that could be taken to improve ins titutional use of Open Access materials, including Open Educational Resources, (c) examine the implications of such actions for Open Distance Learning and generally the higher education sector. Our investigation highlighted some opportunities and the fi ndings resulted into some clear recommendations that emerged from our investigation both for practitioners and for students in this area. There seems to be a clear synergy between the different but related movements of Open access and OERs as both have to address issues of ease of access, quality and visibility in order to become accepted in higher education.

 

Keywords: Keywords: Open Access, Open Educational Resources, Open Education, open and distance learning, Open Access publishing and licensing, digital scholarship

 

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Journal Article

Developing confidence in the use of digital tools in teaching  pp260-267

Dr Sue Greener, Craig Wakefield

© Apr 2015 Volume 13 Issue 4, ECEL 2014, Editor: Kim Long, pp205 - 315

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Abstract

Abstract: In this study Higher Education teachers were offered new mobile devices with very few conditions attached. The aim was to introduce staff to mobile technology and how it could be used to support teaching and learning within a small, interdiscipl inary campus. The study hypothesized that by offering staff the simple incentive of new mobile devices for professional and private use, they will be keener to adopt new practices. The only conditions required were the adoption of two items of software … SharePoint as a file repository, and the VLE providers mobile learning application which provides access to the VLE for both learners and staff. There were three stages to the project; Stage 1 involved presenting staff the results of student feedback fro m their own courses, where the students set out their preferences for using learning technologies. Stage 2 involved surveying staff opinions on the impact of the mobile devices once they were issued. Stage 3 followed up with a selection of interviews, foc ussing on concepts of interest gained from the questionnaires. Overall results from this study suggested there was an undeniable enthusiasm amongst teaching staff for using mobile technology, however there were still issues surrounding digital confidence and the pedagogical reasoning for integrating such technologies. There is still a divide on the role of mobile technologies within the classroom, most likely stemmed from the lack of knowledge surrounding their potential purpose. In conclusion, staff enth usiasm alone is not enough to result in adoption and integration of mobile technology within teaching and learning, there must be a focus on pedagogy and relevance for teaching staff to engage fully.

 

Keywords: Keywords: learning agility, Higher Education, institutional change, digital scholarship

 

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Journal Article

Bringing Open Educational Practice to a Research‑Intensive University: Prospects and Challenges  pp31-42

Elizabeth Masterman

© Apr 2016 Volume 14 Issue 1, ECEL 2015, Editor: Amanda Jefferies and Marija Cubric, pp1 - 80

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Abstract

Abstract: This article describes a small‑scale study that explored the relationship between the pedagogical practices characterised as openŽ and the existing model of undergraduate teaching and learning at a large research‑intensive university (RIU). T he aim was to determine the factors that might enable (conversely impede) the greater uptake of open educational resources (OER) in universities of this type. The research was informed by two theoretical frameworks. The first was derived from the lite rature on open educational practice and served as the basis for an interview schedule. The second was derived from the literature on RIUs and provided a structure for reflecting on the data in three areas of activity: pedagogy, outreach and governance. Th e researchers conducted semi‑structured interviews with 14 academics, selected either for their involvement in open practices or for the recognition they had received for excellence in their teaching. The interview schedule was derived from a literature s urvey focusing on open pedagogic models. Topics discussed with interviewees included the flatteningŽ of the teacher‑student relationship, students assumption of responsibility for their own learning, learning as (or in) a community and the possible in fluence of open practices in research on teaching. Findings suggest that open educational approaches can be accommodated in a universitys prevailing pedagogic model without compromising its integrity. However, openness can enhance the specifics of that p edagogy; for example, through aligning research‑informed teaching with emergent open practices in research and equipping students with the skills necessary for living and working in an open world. There is a closer alignment between releasing OER and an R IUs strategic mission for outreach. Nevertheless, the spread of open practices in both pedagogy and outreach hinges on issues of governance, which in RIUs is characterised by considerable emphasis on the autonomy of individual academics.

 

Keywords: Keywords: open education, OER, research-informed teaching, higher education, pedagogy, digital scholarship

 

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