This session will cover the recent growth of the EdShare network of digital content platforms for sharing educational materials and will focus on the recent development of the EdShareHUB – a community resource harnessing a distributed growing collection of over 8000 open teaching and learning materials.
EdShare was created by the University of Southampton (UoS) as part of the Jisc funded institutional exemplars programme back in 2008. The aim of this project was to facilitate an ethos of sharing and reuse of teaching and learning resources across the institution. The focus was very much on institutional sharing, yet the software and design choices made with EdShare resulted in the potential to go much further by providing an open digital content platform with flexibility for resources to be shared locally or openly with the world.
Following on from this project the solution was repurposed to create a number of open community sharing sites including Humbox, LanguageBox and LORO as well institutional spaces at Glasgow Caledonian University, Edge Hill University, University of Glasgow, University of Southampton as well as the University College London.
Ten years on and under the management of an established enterprise team at the University of Southampton the EdShare offering is now a mature well-supported solution with a distributed source of investment and development influences to facilitate its long-term sustainability. A key motivation for continuing with the development of EdShare is the space it provides for innovation, the flexibility to support educators needs, its adaptability as well as the focus it has on openness. In the context of working with open content, Weller (2015) describes one of the dangers of relying on third party vendors is that the scope for experimentation becomes limited and compromises often have to be made.
Building on the common technical base shared across this network of platforms it has been possible to harness the collective volume of materials which have been shared openly with the world from the distinct institutions and subject specific communities.
In this session the development of the community resource, the EdShareHUB, will be shared outlining its role as an aggregation service and single point of access to a growing collection of open teaching and learning materials as well as how this has been achieved. The EdShareHUB has the potential to aid the discoverability of thousands of open resources that would otherwise be mixed with closed resources in institutional spaces where they can be easily lost amongst the critical mass of content intended for local audiences. Challenges do remain for such a community resource in terms of financial investment and its future development and direction and attendees are encouraged to share their views and provide feedback both in this session and beyond.
This session is submitted under the Learning Technology for wider impact and/or the Wildcard theme.
Weller, M., 2015. Battle for Open: How openness won and why it doesn’t feel like victory (p. 232). Ubiquity Press.
Humbox – http://humbox.ac.uk
LanguageBox – http://languagebox.ac.uk
LORO – http://loro.open.ac.uk
edShare@GCU – http://edshare.gcu.ac.uk
EdShare at Glasgow – http://edshare.gla.ac.uk
EdShare Southampton – http://edshare.soton.ac.uk
eShare – http://eshare.edgehill.ac.uk
OpenEd@UCL – https://open-education-repository.ucl.ac.uk/
EdShareHUB – http://hub.edshare.ac.uk/ (BETA SITE)