Featured post

Finding your tribe

One of the most enjoyable and inspiring books I have read this year has been Sir Ken Robinson's "Out of our Minds"  and my ref...

Thursday, 16 April 2015

Open to change!

I have just returned home from #oer15. My first #oer conference but a place where I met and consolidated friendships with many I have known online as like minds for many years. We were focusing on the issue of mainstreaming Open. Let me explain:

Open educational practitoners believe that education is not something you "do to" others, it is participation in a learning community, we are all learners. As such, we share and learn from each other. Few teachers have an issue with this ideal, (although some are less keen perhaps to learn from their students). Most practioners also feel that getting to grips with Creative Commons licences and searching banks of content is too big a task to contemplate. I think it is also too important to ignore. Watch David Wiley's Ted talk if you are unconvinced.


  • Learning is vital if we are to survive as a species, the challenges that face us are bigger than we can imagine
  • Learning is getting more exclusive, access is limited to a relatively small proportion of advantaged people
  • The costs of learning are beyond the means of the many, this is unfair.

Open educational resources are (mainly) digital objects made available for retention, re-use, revision, re-mixing and redistribution. This is facilitated by a set of Creative Commons licences, the most "open" one being CC BY. This indicates a resource that is available for all of the above but the originator should be attributed. This offers a way of ensuring that work you produce (your worksheets for example) acknowledge your intellectual input. For me this is a way of helping to re-professionalise teaching, a "profession" that has largely been diminished, with teachers just the worker ants, a benign interface between the curriculum creators and exam authorities, under valued and bereft of influence.

So, along with my like minded colleagues, we agreed that we wish to support the journey to open practice, international open practice that opens locked minds, overcomes insularity and silos and empowers creativity and enagement. Great learners make great teachers..

Time however is an issue. There's never enough and we all prioritise accordingly. I proposed that we consider how #openbadges could be deployed in the context of the journey to becoming an Open Educational Practioner, recognition of investment in CPD (becoming a digital practitioner) which could become part of your professional credentials. Others also seemed to feel that this would help to go towards recognition of time invested. I hope this idea flies.

If you are a language teacher, please take a look at my contribution to the OpenContentToolkit here (thanks to @theokl) on images for language teaching. Becoming open is a process so you can take it at your own pace :)

No comments:

Post a Comment