The Open University, UK
critical education, walking and camping.
I’m currently in my second year of a PhD. I’m investigating the idea of selfOER that Suzan Koseoglu and Maha Bali proposed at OER16. Basically, it sees openness as a way of being or as a worldview and that an open educational resource (OER) need not necessarily be considered solely in terms of content, that the self, or open educational practice (OEP), might also be seen as an OER. I instinctively took up the idea because the notion of openness as a way of being really resonated with me. My journey into open education was as a result of participating in open scholarly networks and the cMOOC phenomenon that happened a few years back. Essentially, I became an open learner. Before gaining my scholarship at the OU and moving back to the UK, I worked in adult and community education on the West Coast of Ireland. I taught literacy and ICT. Sadly, I was never really in a position to develop this in terms of open educational practices. It’s my own professional development that’s really benefited from open education initiatives and the networked sharing practices of open educators or scholars.
I only recently volunteered to join the OpenED SIG committee. I thought I could help out and learn more about open education into the bargain. I’m particularly interested to learn of open initiatives that support critical education and adult basic skills as well as how openness plays into the future of work and the digital university or digital scholarship. In pursuit of equality of educational opportunities and a more just society, the OpenED SIG works to draw the different strands of open together and to remain vigilant to the threats. It’s a wonderful initiative, and one that it would seem owes a lot to the sterling behind the scenes work of Teresa MacKinnon, Deb Baff and Viv Rolfe (currently on other duties as co-chair of OER18).