Sunday, December 9, 2007

Week 15

Week 15

I got much more out of this class than I ever expected. I had some knowledge of OER gained here and there over the last few years, but I find that there were gaping holes in my understanding. The history of the movement as well as the pieces that make up the movement were enlightening.

One area I would like to look at in more depth is whether or not there has been any research done what motivates a professor to contribute their work to OER. The one we read about in the Giving Knowledge for Free, where only 30 people from the United States responded, was a good start. There have been hundreds of articles written that look at the incentives and disincentives for a professor to contribute to distance education. OER is somewhat similar and yet has a different set of incentives and disincentives. It seems that the movement has come to a point in history when that should be looked at and a formal commitment to bringing more into the fold should take place.

One problem I had with the class was the amount of work. Thank goodness that changed in the end. Another problem was contact with fellow students. I did not know there was a wiki for students to discuss things until a family member pointed it out to me. He had googled my name which appeared in a list on the site. Unfortunately for me, it was at the end of the semester when I learned about it. How did other students find out about it? That was a great idea. And no, it wasn’t wetpaint.

Much of what I have learned over the last few months has been turned around and used with my students. They are pre-service secondary ed teachers who caught the OER virus. Yeah!

I think there should be a sequel to this class – where we actually do what was originally designed for the course in the beginning. With the knowledge we have gained about the movement, we should be designing ways to influence more professors to become a part of the movement. We could discuss inclusion of K-12. We could evaluate who is contributing and ask ourselves whether or not anyone is being left out and why? We could look at OER platforms and evaluate them. We could dig a little deeper into the copyright issues. Wow. I guess, from what I am saying, that the sequel could be an evaluation project, one that could help the future of OER.

I would love to stay in touch with this group in order to continue the discussion.