TOWARDS INTEGRATION OF OPEN EDUCATIONAL RESOURCES FOR PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT OF LECTURERS AT THE OPEN UNIVERSITY OF TANZANIA
The study reported in this paper used planning evaluation research design (Guskey, 2000) to investigate the context of the Open University of Tanzania in terms of the opportunities and challenges for effective integration of Open Educational Resources (OER) for professional development of lecturers. Data were gathered from a sample of 23 lecturers who participated in the institutional situational analysis workshop from seven academic units at the Open University of Tanzania (OUT) using close-ended (structured) (Cronbanch’s Alpha = 0.7) and open-ended questionnaires developed by OER Africa at SAIDE. Analysis from SPSS and data reduction technique have indicated that, overall it is feasible to integrate OER for professional development at OUT. This is because a number of opportunities are available within OUT which are among the necessary enabling conditions for effective integration of OER ranging from policies related to OER, willingness to integrate OER and commitment of the leadership and availability of relevant infrastructure. Despite the opportunities, challenges such as lack of a standalone policy on OER and expertise on OER have been identified. Amongst other recommendations, it is suggested that there is need to pioneer designing, development and implementation of OER for professional development of lecturers at OUT in order to improve knowledge and expertise related to OER.