Our focus was addressing variations in the socio-economic profile of OER learners through exploring and supporting use practices through partners as trusted sources of support (Authors et.al 2015). OEPS has treated partnership as a design process, and look to build from our understanding of their needs and “knowing the learner”. Often third-sector partners have little experience of writing formal curriculum, knowing is through doing, our approach has borrowed heavily from participatory design to draw out expertise and build confidence (Author 2015). As our partners and their clients called into question the relevance of existing OER content to their context, we developed an understanding of openness as a two way process, not simply the academy releasing content, or supporting use, but opening up content creation to new voices and sites of knowledge. We have shifted from the fuzzy front end of learning design, learning through and for doing (Kemmis 2010), back to content and what partnership means for OER production and practice.
We have also learnt a great deal about production with external partners both third sector and HE. The Open Media Unit (OMU) leads on The Open University’s (OU) open offer, its production model is based on the OU’s formal curriculum (Lane 2012); a set of routines (Grant 2010) which frame its approach. As we turn those capabilities and face outwards, it has revealed hidden assumptions and led us to question “the way we do things round here”. Questions include, how roles and responsibilities developed by the OU to operate at scale can work successfully in the context of discrete external partnerships. Additionally how existing routines and systems (which emerged from print production) work and assumptions about technology as centralised and expensive which no longer hold. These all become visible as we find ways to work with partners and are ultimately questions about our ability to be responsive to different contexts. As we assess and develop our readiness to open up curriculum and practices to new voices these production questions become more acute, they are evolving and developing. The presentation will share our experiences as we navigate our way to becoming open education practitioners.
Authors et al (2015)
Grant, R. M. (2010) Contemporary Strategy Analysis, 7th edn, Oxford, Blackwell Publishing.
Kemmis, S. (2010). Research for praxis: Knowing doing Pedagogy, Culture and Society, 18, 1, 9-27.
Lane, A. (2012) Collaborative Development of Open Educational Resources for Open and Distance Learning, HE Academy, http://www.heacademy.ac.uk/assets/documents/oer/OER_CS_Andy_Lane_Collaborative_development_of_OER_for_distance%20learning.pdf last accessed 16th of August 2013