• What can open learn from blended learning initiatives?

    In my reviewing of BC research on open, I came across a 2015 study by Irwin DeVries that used a comparative case study methodology of OERu course development with a case from FOSS development (p.77). I’ve done my share of case study research, and the comparative case study design has been one I’ve stayed away from, because I’ve never been able to reconcile how you’d avoid an apples to oranges comparison situation. Irwin’s article illustrates that this is not only doable, but also offers some possibilities that I hadn’t considered. I’m currently in the process of preparing a research proposal of institutional case study research on a few BC institutions…

  • OpenEd Week @KPU

    I had the privilege of being one of the keynotes at KPU’s Open Education Week, a fantastic day that was co-organized by KPU, UBC, Douglas, SFU, and BCIT. There is nothing better than following a student keynote, and Aran Armutlu kept our attention on the things that matter in open…students and affordability of higher education, while also touching on the impact of open pedagogy. He talked about his first experience as a student discovering his course used a zero cost textbook and since the instructor, Jennifer Kirkey was also in attendance it was a really nice shout out to instructors doing good work and the impact it has on students.…

  • Open universities and the broader open narrative

    Today Martin Weller gave a really nice talk at the OU that was streamed for a global audience that was no doubt numerous. I’m told there’s a recording that will be posted for those who have missed it. There was a lot of rich information in his talk but Martin punctuated a few big points for me: Open universities were a higher education innovation and continue to be an innovation (I wholeheartedly agree). In fact, “innovation happened around an idea of openness”, which ensures its relevance. The Open University has been innovating open and ed tech for a long time (they were early adopters of Moodle and the biggest contributor…

  • #OER18

    I’ve had a few days to percolate over the amazing experience of #oer18.  I attended this conference for the first time last year and #oer17 was so transformative that I opted for another round of a small conference in an interesting venue with lots of provocative and critical conversations about open.  This year didn’t disappoint, and I was so energized by getting to spend time with some amazing and smart women doing great things in this space. Locating our discussions in a more historical context:  There was a strong current of history at this conference, which was convenient for Viv and I who were presenting on the historical branches of…

  • OER in other languages – a project update of sorts

    It’s been 5 weeks since I started the Other Language OER site and what started as  part whim, part experiment, part inspired by following the #opencon stream, has evolved into an itch that that gets me on a daily basis.  My goal was to post one OER per week from another language than English but after 5 weeks there are 12 OERs in 12 different languages, one of them submitted by someone other than myself (thanks @tomonagashima !) The background and rationale for the site emerged from some longer deliberations and an even longer one over here  and I get that it’s really a very limited audience who might be interested…

  • OER and the language problem (part 2) – the status and function rationale

    Critical scholarship ought to analyse the strong forces that are at pains to create the impression that English serves all the world’s citizens equally well, or those who uncritically assume this is so, when this is manifestly not the case. (Phillipson, 2001)   In my first post on this topic I put forward some high level statements on why I think OER has a language problem.  The “problem” may largely be one of awareness and as the movement evolves into its adolescence I think it will be increasingly important to surface the intersection of language, OER, and social justice. My specific concern is with the uni-directional nature of OER from English…

  • Language and the OER problem

    I have about 3 posts I could write about this topic and eventually I might get to my 2 half-baked drafts and book reviews, but the topic is complex and multifaceted, so let’s see where this goes. One of the shifts in OER movement that I’ve really appreciated has been the thread of declaring social justice as part of what we do in the OER space.  I’m hoping that as we evolve we can remember that social justice is inherently tied to language which has been so well argued in Ingrid Pillar’s recent book:  Linguistic Diversity and Social Justice. OER has a language problem.  The majority of OERs are in…

  • A few moments from ICDE 2017 #worldconf17

    I skipped Open Ed  this year to attend the ICDE World Conference  in Toronto.  The last time I attended ICDE was eight years ago  in Maastricht.  I brought my daughter, who was 5. She got sick in the bathroom 15 minutes before my presentation, then sat on the floor and did crafts while I presented.  (Somebody took  a photo of her which still lives in the conference archives. Check out that mom-purse full of kid stuff).  Of the things that I remember, the conference was held in a very nice venue but there was no food at all for the four days. I  remember being impressed by how  it was…

  • Innovation in Higher Education…and other blasts from the past

    I had the pleasure to be a keynote at CNIE 2017 in Banff last week, 14 years after first attending the very first iteration of this conference in the exact same location. This year’s theme was Exploring our past, present and future, which could not have been a more perfect theme to talk about a topic I’ve become quite interested in over the past year.  Last year I began looking into the past of concepts like open pedagogy/pédagogie ouverte  and delving into this past has really helped me gain some perspective on how we are currently talking about open.  Preparing for the CNIE keynote gave me a great opportunity to delve  more deeply into the past…

  • Openness and Teaching, Learning, and Student Success

    I’m speaking at this year’s CICAN conference in a couple of weeks, and was asked to do an additional session for the Teaching, Learning, and Student Success stream.  This year’s conference theme aims to “showcase the contribution of colleges and institutes in transforming communities and building a more prosperous and equitable Canada which embraces diversity and inclusion, openness and a strong sense of pride” and since I’m fresh from my fabulous #OER17 experience, I thought I’d do a session called Teaching, Learning, and Student Success in the Context of Open.   That title doesn’t really say much, so I’m framing it around these questions: What do we gain as institutions…

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