Repurposing for an open educational repository:quantity, quality and processes

Presenters from left to right:  Tina Wilson, Rose Webb, Giselle Ferreira and Teresa Connoly.

In this presentation they are explaining the processes of unit production for OpenLearn. Giselle is presenting a unit in depth, showing all sorts of graphs, support texts and pedagogies that are cnetral to the OU courses.

Rose Webb is very briefly talking about the rights issues, technical cosntraints, resources and the Integrity Model. Rose emphasises that in OpenLearn people had to learn from experience. The faculties gained acces to a document entitled “Things to consider” which would provide them with some guidelines on what to offer in terms of their courses to OpenLearn.

Compendium map of production processCompendium map on the production process, by Teresa Connoly

There are 3 Steps to production:

Sourcing & assessment – contact with faculties and course managers, identifying in which format the materials were available, OpenLeanr academics examine the materials and check whetheer they are suitable to go to OpenLearn, think of the IP issues, materials are passed onto the media team for publishing and Rights dept double check for IP issues.

Production Process – Text, images, music etc. These need to be identifyed and copyright cleared. Materials are then XML tagged and upon return materials are checked. This process can take up to 6 weeks. Most of this time is used towards clearing copyright.

Publication – OpenLearn & Faculties academics check the materials to have a ‘go ahead’ for publication.

There is a similar production process to the LabSpace as well. The whole production has a collaborative approach.

Giselle brings a few questions: Efficacy: How do we make this work?

Efficiency: How can we make it work well?

Context: Comunity engagement

There is a lack of flexibility for hearing the various pedagogical voices embedded in the materials. There is no time to modify tehe materials to be more web-suited. This would have to happen outside the Integrity Model. The streamline production of OpenLearn aims to meet the project targets, but doesn’t stop people from experiementing at a times. A lot of time is spent negotiating with academics within the faculties. This is a sensitive matter because the academics have a very idiosyncratic relationship with the materials.

Internal community engagement:

Engagement: what’s in it for me? This is an attempt of universities to be part of a global movement and there are competing discourses within the OER movement (she mentioned my presentation yesterday, about teh discourses of OERs).

Leadership: decision-making & quality assurance. Making decision in OpenLearn rests within a core team and this is a very different way of operating from the rest of the university (interesting point!).

Pedagogies: for print & pedagogies for Web. There is not a tutor, a mediator or facilitator. Does it mean that there’s a need for a different pedagogy to support the self-learner, embedded in the materials?

Professional Jurisdiction: Authority & Validation

OERs needs to consider issues of authorship, validation, ownership of the work. The production process of units need to get specific attention.

Question: repurposing materials is very expense. Wouldn’t it be cheaper to produce brand new material for OpenLearn?

Giselle says that there is a lot of reuse already in the OU but not across disciplines.

The difficulty to transfer content relies largely on technological barriers (Moodle platforms are different at the moment). New production in the OU will probably already have OpenLearn in mind.

 Interesting presentation.


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