#Cetis14 Open Education: From Open Practice to Open Policy

Last week Li and I ran a session at the Cetis Conference on Open Education: From Open Practice to Open Policy.  My initial plan had been to focus on questions such as:

  • What, if any, is the value of open education policy?
  • Do institutions need open education policies?
  • Should government agencies play a role in the development of open education policy?
  • Are there conflicts between commercial interests and market forces, and open education policy and practice?
  •  How can open education initiatives be nurtured and sustained?
  • And what do we mean by “open education” anyway?!

Open Education, Open Scotland – report & presentations

(Originally posted at Open Scotland)

Last week the ALT Scotland Special Interest Group hosted the second Open Scotland event, Open Education, Open Scotland at the Informatics Forum at the University of Edinburgh.  This free and open event was attended by sixty colleagues, and speakers represented every sector of Scottish education including schools, further education, higher education and government.

Open Scotland at CILIP Scotland Conference

Earlier this week I was invited to present about Open Scotland at the CILIP Scotland Conference in Dundee. This is the first time I’ve attended the CILIPS conference and it was a really lively and engaging event with over 300 participants and an inspiring keynote on “Challenges, Choices and Opportunities” from Martyn Evans, Chief Executive of the Carnegie Trust.  My Open Scotland presentations seemed to be well received and I was very encouraged to have a couple of questions about the potential role of public libraries in opening access to educational resources, particularly for the school sector.  When we held the first Open Scotland Summit in Edinburgh in 2013 it occurred to me that the education sector potentially has much to learn from the public library sector in terms of open practice.

Open Practice and Open Policy at the Cetis Conference

The theme of this years annual Cetis Conference at the University of Bolton is Building the Digital Institution, and once again there is a strong focus on openness.  In addition to Audrey Watters keynote,  and parallel sessions on open knowledge (Open Knowledge: Wikipedia and Beyond) and open source (Web Services or Cloud, Open Source or outsourced?),  there are two open education sessions:

Open Education: a New World Order? facilitated by Li Yuan and Stephen Powell
Open Education: From Open Practice to Open Policy by Lorna M.Campell and Li Yuan.

Open Education: From Open Practice to Open Policy is very much a natural progression from open education parallels we’ve run at previous Cetis Conferences.  The first open education session we ran at the Cetis Conference was the UK OER Scoping Session way back in 2008 and since then we’ve progressed through the OER Technical Roundtable, Building Collections of OERs, to Open Practice and OER Sustainability, so it seemed natural that this year’s session should focus on moving from open practice to open policy.

OKF Open Education Working Group Advisory Board

Earlier this month I was delighted to be invited to join the Advisory Board of the Open Knowledge Foundation’s Open Education Working Group. The aim of the group, which is led by Marieke Guy, is “to initiate global cross-sector and cross-domain activity that encompasses the various facets of open education.”  Marieke has invited all Board members to write an introductory blog post for the group so here’s mine. It was published over at Open Education Working Group site last week.


OKF Open Education Working Group

Welsh Government Report on Open and Online

(Cross posted from Open Scotland blog)

Last week the Welsh Government’s Online Digital Learning Working Group published their report  Open and Online: Wales, higher education and emerging modes of learning. The group was established in February 2013 by Leighton Andrews AM, the Welsh Government’s Minister for Education and Skills at the time,

“to examine the potential for online digital learning and how the Welsh Government can support the higher education sector in this growing field.”

Wales O&OPaul Richardson of Jisc RSC Wales acted as professional advisor to the group and undertook the consultation exercise.  The report includes an invaluable background paper produced by Paul on Open and online resources: implications for practice in higher education institutions in Wales, which provides an invaluable overview of recent open education developments including OER and MOOCs, and quotes from a number of Cetis blogs and publications.  Although Paul’s paper focuses on the implications of open education for Welsh HEIs I can also highly recommend is as an excellent general summary of recent developments open education policy, practice and technology.

The report itself includes the following of seven recommendations addressed to the Minister for Education and Skills and higher education institutions.

Open Scotland Webinar

Last week Joe Wilson of SQA and I presented a short webinar on the Open Scotland initiative and the Scottish Open Education Declaration.  The webinar, which was hosted by Celeste McLaughlin of Jisc RSC Scotland, generated some interesting discussion and debate around open education in Scotland.  A recording of the webinar is available here, and our slides are embedded below.

What I Know Is

“We are all publishers now, publishing has never been so ubiquitous”
- Padmini Ray Murray

Earlier this week I was speaking at What I Know Is an interdisciplinary research symposium on online collaborative knowledge building organised by the University of Stirling’s Division of Communications, Media and Culture, together with Wikimedia UK.  It was a completely fascinating and eclectic event that covered everything from new models of academic publishing, issues of trust and authorship, non-hierarchical networks of knowledge, extended cognition, collaborative art and the semantics of open.