New OER initiatives are popping out throughout the world. It is often the case that institutions are looking for answers on how to get started as OER providers, and how to get their staff and students involved in the process. Today I am in a meeting with some Dutch universities, which are either already offering content online or considering joining the OCW movement. The questions they ask and discuss in the meeting are, in my view, very relevant for any institution contemplating offering OER. These are:
What is the best audience for OER, learners or teachers?
What sort of support should an institution provide to its staff to design OER?
Should lecturers be involved in publishing the materials as well as developing them? Or should they only concentrate on designing, and the institution provide the infra-structure for publishing?
How to involve lecturers in designing and providing content?
What criteria to use to guarantee that the material offered is of high quality?
What do lecturers have to know before they get started?
With so much technology available, how to decide on the best media for OER provision?
OpenLearn has answers for many of these questions (perhaps all), but “does one size fit all’? By the way, this is one of the favourite questions of our new VC, Mr Martin Bean. And it is also something that OLnet is interested in finding out, evidence of best practices that can serve as a starting point for discussion around these issues. OLnet welcome ideas, experiences and stories to share with the community.