Cool stuff from OpenEducation 2008

Just some highlights:

  • Siyavula Project from the Shuttleworth Foundation: A comprehensive curriculum that meets all the requirements of the South African government developed by an online community of teachers contributing OERs to an easy-to-use opensource authoring platform.

Wouldn’t it be amazing to build a collection of content and pedagogical modules that could be filtered according to the curriculum standards and requirements of any given country in the world!? How hard would it be to get efforts like Open High School and High Tech High to contribute to the same library? How critical is that, really?

  • Open Med School from the University of Michigan: Don’t freak out, it’s not actually online med school. A cross-discipline team from the IT programs and Med School at UMich has set up a unique [potentially very scalable] interface and management system for using volunteers/employees they affectionately call “dScribes” [distributed scribes] to clear content objects [from diagrams to simulations] in medical courses for publication as open educational resources.

Starts my mind going crazy with visions of creating an ‘OER marketplace’ where graphic design, film, information systems, interaction design and illustration students come together to create content objects for use in courses across disciplines, campuses, countries…my students in Paraguay making a video about composting that can be used by a professor of crop science in Nebraska, whose students then contribute comparative charts of turf grass varieties studied as part of an open courseware lecture series by students starting a sod farm in Ukraine.

  • Case Studies as OERs: The ISKME team conducted thorough case studies of 6 different open education projects, tagged them, stored them on YouTube and the OER Commons, and even created a Case Study Toolkit to encourage others to incorporate this simple method of self-evaluation.

The best part of this for me was the idea that, when well-tagged and made public, the case study itself becomes an OER–something that others can learn from, use, re-use and adapt. Talk about maximizing the potential return on investment! Also underscores one of the challenges that came up over and over at the conference–how deeply Open Education efforts are currently rooted in and dependent on altruism. More on this later…

Cool stuff, eh?

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One response to “Cool stuff from OpenEducation 2008

  1. Pingback: Cool bstuff/b from OpenEducation 2008

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