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Abstract and Figures

Open educational practices (OEP) is a broad descriptor of practices that include the creation, use and reuse of open educational resources (OER) as well as open pedagogies and open sharing of teaching practices. As compared with OER, there has been little empirical research on individual educators' use of OEP for teaching in higher education. This research study addresses that gap, exploring the digital and pedagogical strategies of a diverse group of university educators, focusing on whether, why and how they use OEP for teaching. The study was conducted at one Irish university; semi-structured interviews were carried out with educators across multiple disciplines. Only a minority of educators used OEP. Using constructivist grounded theory, a model of the concept 'Using OEP for teaching' was constructed showing four dimensions shared by open educators: balancing privacy and openness, developing digital literacies, valuing social learning, and challenging traditional teaching role expectations. The use of OEP by educators is complex, personal and contextual; it is also continuously negotiated. These findings suggest that research-informed policies and collaborative and critical approaches to openness are required to support staff, students and learning in an increasingly complex higher education environment.
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Openness and praxis: Exploring the use of open
educational practices in higher education
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Catherine"Cronin"
National"University"of"Ireland,"Galway"
Postprint"
In"press,"2017,"International*Review*of*Research*in*Open*and*Distributed*Learning"
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Abstract!
Open" educational" practices" (OEP)" is" a" broad" descriptor" of" practices" that"
include"the" creation," use" and" reuse" of" open" educational" resources" (OER)" as"
well"as"open"pedagogies"and"open"sharing"of"teaching"practices."As"compared"
with"OER,"there"has"been"little"empirical"research"on"individual"educators’"use"
of" OEP" for" teaching" in" higher" education." This" research" study" addresses" that"
gap," exploring" the" digital" and" pedagogical" strategies" of" a" diverse" group" of"
university" educators," focusing" on" whether," why" and" how" they" use" OEP" for"
teaching." The" study" was" conducted" at" one" Irish" university;" semi-structured"
interviews"were"carried"out"with"educators"across"multiple"disciplines."Only"a"
minority" of" educators" used" OEP." Using" constructivist" grounded" theory," a"
model"of" the" concept"‘Using"OEP"for"teaching’"was" constructed"showing"four"
dimensions" shared" by" open" educators:" balancing" privacy" and" openness,"
developing" digital" literacies," valuing" social" learning," and" challenging"
traditional"teaching"role"expectations."The"use"of"OEP"by"educators"is"complex,"
personal" and" contextual;" it" is" also" continuously" negotiated." These" findings"
suggest" that" research-informed" policies" and" collaborative" and" critical"
approaches"to"openness"are"required"to"support"staff,"students"and"learning"in"
an"increasingly"complex"higher"education"environment."
Key" words:" open" educational" practices," open" educational" resources," open"
practices,"OEP,"higher"education"
!
Introduction!
Openness"in"education"attracts"considerable"attention"and"debate."Much"recent"research"
has" focused" on" MOOCs," open" educational" resources" (OER)," social" media" in" education,"
and" concomitant" issues" related" to" data," privacy," ethics," and" equality" (Moe," 2015;"
National"Forum,"2015;"Stewart,"2015;"Weller,"2014;"Wiley,"Bliss,"&"McEwen,"2014)."The"
potential"benefits"and"limits"of"open"education"are"widely"reported"in"the"literature"and"
explored"briefly"in"this"paper."However,"there"is"a"lack"of"empirical"data"about"the"use"of"
open" educational" practices" (OEP)," particularly" in" institutions" without" open" education"
policies."OEP"is"a"broad"descriptor"that"includes"the"creation,"use"and"reuse"of"OER,"open"
pedagogies," and" open" sharing" of" teaching" practices." Veletsianos"(2010)" notes" that"
educators" can" shape" and/or" be" shaped" by" openness."It" is" this" individual" meaning-
making"and"praxis"that"I"explore"in"this"study.""
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The" qualitative," empirical" study" explores" meaning-making" and" decision-making" by"
university" educators" regarding" whether," why" and" how" they" use" open" educational"
practices." It" is" a"study" not" only" of" open" educators," but" of" a" broad" cross-section" of"
academic"staff"at"one"university."The"purpose"is"to"understand"how"university"educators"
conceive"of," make" sense" of," and" make" use"of" OEP" in" their" teaching," and" to" try" to"learn"
more" about," and" from," the" practices" and" values" of" educators" from" across" a" broad"
continuum"of"‘closed’"to"open"practices.""
The"paper" begins"with"a"review"of" the"literature,"exploring"interpretations"of" openness"
in" education." I" pay" particular" attention" to" the" various" definitions" of" open" educational"
practices"and" provide" a" theoretical" framework" for" exploration"of"OEP."Following"this,"I"
describe" the" results" of" an" empirical" study" of" a" diverse" cross-section" of" academic" staff"
across"multiple"disciplines,"focusing"on"whether,"why"and"how"they"use"OEP."The"paper"
ends"with"general" conclusions" of" the"study"as"well"as"implications"for"higher"education"
practitioners,"researchers,"managers"and"policy"makers.""
Openness!in!education!
Education"is"about"sharing"knowledge,"thus"openness"is"inherent"in"education."But"what"
exactly"is" ‘open" education’?"According" to" the"Open" Education"Consortium" (n.d.):"“open"
education"encompasses"resources,"tools"and"practices"that"employ"a"framework"of"open"
sharing"to"improve"educational"access"and"effectiveness"worldwide”."Yet"open"education"
narratives" and" initiatives" have" evolved" in" different" contexts," with" differing" priorities."
Thus," open" education" often"m eans"subtly" or" substantively" different" things" to" different"
people." The" qualifier" ‘open’" is" variously" used" to" describe" resources" (the" artefacts"
themselves" as" well" as" access" to" and" usage" of" them)," learning" and" teaching" practices,"
institutional" practices," the" use" of" educational" technologies," and" the" values" underlying"
educational"endeavours."Weller"(2014)"advises"that"we"are"mistaken"to"try"to"define"or"
discuss" openness" as" a" unified" entity;" it" is" more" useful" as" an" umbrella" term." Watters"
(2014)" cautions" that" while" such" multivalence" c an" be" a" strength," it" is" also" a" weakness"
when"the"term"“becomes"so"widely"applied"that"it"is"rendered"meaningless”."Conducting"
and" studying" research" on" open" education" thus" requires" that" we" identify" the" precise"
interpretation(s)"and"contexts"of"openness"being"explored."
Interpretations+of+openness+in+education+
Four" broad" interpretations" of"openness" within" the" context"of" higher" education" can" be"
identified" across" the" literature." Following" is" a" brief" summary" of" these" four"
interpretations:" open" a dmission," open" as" free," open" educational" reso urces" (OER)," and"
open"educational"practices"(OEP)."This"is"followed" by" a" deeper"exploration"of" OEP," the"
focus"of"this"study."
Open*admission*
One" interpretation" of" openness" is" open" admission" to" formal" education." The" qualifier"
‘open’" refers" to" open-door"academic" policies,"i.e." elimination" of" entry" requirements"for"
institution-based" learning," as" in" ‘open" university’." No" prior" educational" attainment" is"
required" for" entry" to" open" universities," although" course" fees" generally" apply." Open"
universities" often" make" educational" resources" available" to" the" public" for" free" (an"
example"of" the"second" interpretation" of" open" education,"described" below),"historically"
via"television,"radio,"and"more"recently"the"internet."
Open*as*free*
A"second"interpretation"of"openness"describes"educational"resources"that"are"available"
for"free," i.e." at"no" cost"to" the"user." This" level"of" openness" is" an"extension"of" the"idea" of"
public" libraries" and" the" internet" as" a" free" and" open" resource" for" all." Under" this"
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interpretation" a" vast" array" of"online" resources" and"courses" would" be" considered" open,"
e.g." YouTube" videos," TED" Talks," Khan" Academy" screencasts," MOOCs," etc." (Moe," 2015)."
These"educational"resources"are"freely"available"online"to"anyone"interested"in"and,"not"
insignificantly,"able"to"access"them."In"many"cases"(e.g."most"MOOC"providers)"users"are"
required"to"register,"providing"personal"information"such"as"a"name"and"email"address."
In"such" cases,"while"resources"are"technically"free,"they"have"an" opportunity"cost"to"the"
user"in" the" form" of"personal"data"and"usage"data"(Hodgkinson-Williams"&" Gray,"2009)."
In" addition," the" use" of" free" online" resource s" is" subject" to" copyright" restrictions" unless"
the" creators" provide" explicit" permission" for" reuse" of" the" original" works." Many" open"
education" advocates" and" researchers" thus" consider" ‘open" as" free’" to" be" a" limited"
interpretation"of"openness"(Wiley,"2009;"Winn,"2012),"leading"to"a"third"interpretation:"
open"educational"resources"or"OER."
Open*educational*resources*(OER)*
According"to"the"Open"Education"Consortium"(n.d.),"openness"is"not"simply"a"matter"of"
access" but" “the" ability" to" modify" and" use" materials," information" and" networks" so"
education" can" be" personalized" to" individual" users" or" woven" together" in" new" ways" for"
large" and" diverse" audiences.”" This" change" in" the" conception" of" openness" is" often"
described" as" the" difference" between" open" as" gratis"(free" of" cost)" and" open" as" libre"
(enabling"legal"reuse)"(Winn,"2012)."The"term"‘open"educational"resources’"or"OER,"first"
coined"in" 2002," defines"resources" that" expressly"enable" reuse" through"the" use" of"open"
licensing"or"release"into"the"public"domain"(Wiley"et"al.,"2014)."Open"licensing,"typically"
via" a" Creative" Commons" license," means" that" resources" can" be" altered," reused" and/or"
repurposed"to"suit"requirements"within"specific"contexts,"depending"on"the"exact"terms"
of"the"license."These"usage" rights" are" defined"as"the" “5" Rs"of"Openness”:" Retain," Reuse,"
Revise," Remix" and" Redistribute" (Wiley" et" al.," 2014)." Thus" while" openness" in" OER" is"
focused" on" freedom," the" degrees" of" freedom" available" within" a" particular" license" can"
vary" (Lane,"2009)." Multiple" studies" have" shown" a" low" but" slowly" increasing" level" of"
awareness" and" acceptance" of" OER" among" academic" staff" in" higher" education" (Allen" &"
Seaman," 2016;" National" Forum," 2015;" Reed," 2013;" Rolfe," 2012)." Overall," the" focus" of"
OER" is" on" educational" content," leading" to" a" fourth" interpretation" of" openness:" open"
educational"practices"or"OEP.""
Open*educational*practices*(OEP)*
Open" education" practitioners" and" researchers" describe" OEP" as" moving" beyond" a"
content-centred"approach,"shifting"the" focus" from"resources"to"practices,"with"learners"
and"teachers"sharing"the"processes"of"knowledge"creation"(Beetham,"Falconer,"McGill,"&"
Littlejohn,"2012;"Deimann"&"Sloep,"2013;"Ehlers,"2011;"Geser,"2007;"Lane"&"McAndrew,"
2010)."A"widely"used" definition"of" OEP" is"provided"by" Ehlers" (2011):"“practices"which"
support" the" (re)use" and" production" of" OER" through" institutional" policies," promote"
innovative" pedagogical" models,"and" respect"and" empower" learners" as" co-producers"on"
their"lifelong"learning"paths.”"Research"studies"deal"with"this"broad"definition"of"OEP"in"
various"ways."Some"focus"primarily"on"the"OER"aspects"of"OEP"(Armellini"&"Nie,"2013;"
Atenas,"Havemann,"&"Priego,"2014;"Hogan,"Carlson,"&"Kirk,"2015;"Karunanayaka,"Naidu,"
Rajendra," &" Ratnayake," 2015;" Murphy," 2013;" OPAL," 2011)." Other" studies" explore"
broader" aspects" of" OEP" such" as" open" pedagogies," open" publishing," and" use" of" open"
technologies"(Beetham"et"al.,"2012;"Casey"&"Evans,"2011;"Rowe,"Bozalek,"&"Frantz,"2013;"
Waycott,"Sheard,"Thompson,"&"Clerehan,"2013).""
The" scope" of" OEP" continues" to" evolve" rapidly." Education" researchers" across" many"
domains"have"described"and"theorised"some"or"all"of"the"practices"defined"here"as"open"
educational" practices" using" a" variety" of" definitions" and" theoretical" frameworks." These"
include" open" scholarship" (Veletsianos" &" Kimmons," 2012b;" Weller," 2011)," networked"
participatory" scholarship" (Veletsianos" &" Kimmons," 2012a),"open" teaching" (Couros" &"
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Hildebrandt,"2016),"open"pedagogy"(DeRosa"&"Robison,"2015;"Hegarty,"2015;"Rosen"&"
Smale," 2015;" Weller," 2014)," and" critical" digital" pedagogy" (Stommel," 2014)." All" are"
emergent" scholarly" practices" that" espouse" a" combination" of" open" resources," open"
teaching," sharing," and" networked" participation." I" have" drawn" from" research" in" all" of"
these" areas" to" inform" my" work." I" use" the" following" definition" of" OEP" in" this" study:"
collaborative" practices" which" include" the" creation," use" and" reuse" of" OER," as" well" as"
pedagogical" practices" employing" participatory" technologies" and" social" networks" for"
interaction,"peer-learning,"knowledge"creation,"and"empowerment"of"learners."
Theoretical!framework!!
This"study"draws"on"both"sociocultural"and"social"realist"theories."From"a"sociocultural"
perspective," human" activities"are" viewed" as" social" practices" situated" within" particular"
social," cultural" and" historical" settings" (Lewis," Enciso" &" Moje," 2007)." Openness" is" a"
sociocultural"phenomenon,"as"is" higher"education;"both"are"situated"in"and"reflect" their"
specific" contexts" and" cultures" (Peter" &" Deimann," 2013;" Siemens" &" Matheos," 2010)." A"
sociocultural" framework" is" used" by" Veletsianos" (2010," 2015)" and" Veletsianos" and"
Kimmons"(2012a,"2012b)"to"explore"agency"and"context"in"their"work" on" the"practices"
and"complexities"of" open," networked," participatory" scholarship."In"this"study,"I"explore"
individual"agency"as"well"as"the"relationship"between"agency"and"structure."Building"on"
the" work" of" other" open" education" researchers" (see" Cox," 2016;" Cox" &" Trotter," 2016;"
Hodgkinson-Williams"&" Gray,"2009),"I"have"found" Archer’s" (2003)"social" realist" theory"
to" be" a" useful" framework." Archer’s" work" identifies" three" interdependent" strata" of"
reality:"structure"(e.g."institutional"systems,"policies),"culture"(e.g."norms,"ideas,"beliefs),"
and" agency" (individual" freedom" to" act)." According" to" Archer’s" (2003)" “morphogenetic"
cycle”," the" interrelations" between" structure," culture" and" agency" occur" over" time." The"
powers"of"structure"and"culture"exist"but"are"only"activated"when"human"agents"seek"to"
act." Human" reflexivity" is" the" mechanism" that" mediates" between" structure" and" agency,"
moving"from"confronting"constraints"to"elaborating"a"course"of"action"(Archer,"2003).""
Study!and!method!
The"goal"of"this"study"is"to"understand"why,"how,"and"to"what"extent"academic"staff"use,"
or"do"not" use," open" educational"practices."The"scope"of" the" study"is" the"use" of"OEP" for"
teaching:" it" does" not" include" other" aspects" of" OEP" such" as" open" research" or" open"
publishing."The"study"posed"the"following"research"questions:"
In"what"ways"do"academic"staff"use"OEP?"
Why"do/don’t"individual"members"of"academic"staff"use"OEP?"
What"practices,"values"and/or"strategies"are"shared"by"academic"staff"who"use"
OEP,"if"any?""
The" study" used" qualitative" research" methods," specifically" constructivist" grounded"
theory!(Charmaz,"2014)"to"explore"these"questions."Grounded"theory"method,"originally"
developed" by" Glaser" and" Strauss" (1967)," aims" to" build" useful" theory" from" empirical"
observations;"‘ground’"refers"to"the"grounding"of"findings"in"rigorous"qualitative"inquiry"
and" analysis." Underpinned" by" interpretivist" epistemology," grounded" theory" is" a"
systematic," inductive" and" comparative" approach" for" conducting" inquiry" (Charmaz,"
2006)." Key" aspects" include" the" constant" comparative" method" (comparing" data" with"
data,"data"with"codes,"codes"with"codes,"codes"with"categories,"etc.)"and"the" generation"
and" emergence" of" theory" from" what" is" observable" in" the" data" (Charmaz," 2006," 2014;"
Glaser"&"Strauss,"1967;"Mavetera"&"Kroeze,"2009)."In"constructivist"grounded"theory,"as"
pioneered"by" Charmaz" (2006),"reality"is"recognised"as"multiple"and"interpretive"rather"
than" singular" and" self-evident." Thus," “generalisations" are" partial," conditional" and"
situated"in"time"and"space”"(Charmaz,"2006,"p."141)."Storytelling"is"key:"the"focus" is" on"
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participants’" interpretations" of" their" experiences." Overall," however," the" goal"of" all"
grounded" theory" method" is" to" generate" concepts" that" explain" the" way" people" resolve"
their" central" concerns" (Charmaz," 2014;" Glaser" &" Strauss," 1967)." For" this" study," the"
central" concern" relates" to" the" use" of" OEP" for" teaching." The" constructivist" grounded"
theory"approach"was"used"for"sampling,"interviewing,"and"analysis."
Context+
The" study" took" place" at" one" higher" education" institution" in" Ireland:" a" medium-sized,"
research-focused," campus-based" university" offering" both" undergraduate" and"
postgraduate"degrees."Although" an" increasing" number" of" courses" are" offered" in" online"
and" blended" learning" format," the" majority" of" the" university’s" courses" are" offered" on"
campus." The" university" uses" a" well-known" VLE" (Virtual" Learning" Environment," i.e."
learning" platform)." In" terms" of" institutional" structure" and" culture" with" respect" to"
openness,"there"were"no"policies"or"strategies"related"to"open"access"publishing"or"OER"
at"the"time"at"which"interviews"were"conducted"for"this"study."Openness"was"not"one"of"
the"mission"statements"or"core"values"of"the"university."
Participants+
Participants"were"members"of"academic"staff"across"a"broad"range"of"disciplines."Rather"
than"exploring"the"practices"of"open"educators"only,"I"sought"to"explore"the"practices"of"
educators" along" a" continuum" of" ‘closed’" to" open" practices." Open" sampling" was" used"
initially" to" maximize" diversity" across" three" categories:" gender," discipline" area," and"
employment"status."Firstly,"an"equal"representation"of"female"and"male"participants"was"
invited" to" participate." Secondly," participants" were" invited" from" across" two" broad"
discipline" areas" using" Biglan’s" (1973)"typology" of" disciplines:" hard" and" soft," pure" and"
applied" (further" discussed" and" developed" in" Trowler," Saunders," &" Bamber," 2012)."
Participants" were" invited" equally" from" two" groups:" STEM" disciplines" and" Arts," Social"
Science,"Business"and"Law"disciplines."The"breakdown"of"disciplines"is"shown"in"Table"1."
Finally," for" the" purposes" of" the" study" I" defined" the" term" ‘academic" staff’" broadly" as:"
individuals" employed " by" the" university," with" responsibility" for" teachin g," regardless" of"
whether" they" were" employed" full-time" or" part-time," on" permanent," temporary," or" no"
contracts."
Table 1. Discipline Groups
"
Later" in" the" interviewing" and" analysis" process," participants" were" selected" using"
theoretical"sampling."Theoretical"sampling"is"the"process"of"data"collection"in"grounded"
theory" whereby" data" is" jointly" collected," coded" and" analysed" so" the" researcher" can"
decide" what" data" to" search " for" and" to" collect" next" in" order" to" saturate" eac h" emerging"
category/concept" (Charmaz," 2014;" Glaser" &" Strauss," 1967;" Hallberg," 2006)." The" total"
number"of"participants"is"not"predetermined;"it"is"determined"by"theoretical"saturation"
of" the" emerging" theory." A" total" of" 19" academic" staff" participated" in" the" study." The"
breakdown"across"the"three"categories"is"shown"in"Table"2."""
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Table 2. Participants (19)
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Data+collection+and+analysis
Using" a" semi-structured" interview" protocol" I" interviewed" all" participants," face-to-face,"
between"August"and"December"2015."Each"interview"lasted"approximately"one"hour"and"
was"audio-recorded"and"transcribed"verbatim,"by"me."In"constructivist"grounded"theory,"
data"and"analysis"are"seen"as"social"constructions"reflecting"both"the"participant"and"the"
researcher"(Charmaz,"2014;"Hallberg,"2006)."Data"were"analysed"in"an"iterative"manner."
Interview" transcripts" were" initially" hand" coded"using" open," inductive" coding" methods."
Using" the" constant" comparative" method" (Glaser" &" Strauss," 1967)," data" analysis" was"
undertaken" concurrently" with" data" gathering." Results" of" early" interviews" enabled"
refinement"of"interview"questions"for"subsequent"interviews."New"codes"were"added"as"
they" emerged"and" previous" transcripts" were" checked" for" these" codes." I" continued"this"
process"until"I"could"not"identify"any" new" codes,"categories"or"themes,"i.e."the"point"of"
data" saturation" was" reached." NVivo" 10" was" used" to" facilitate" data" management" and"
visualisation,"the"move"from"codes"to"categories,"and"the"development"of"themes.""
Rigor+
Charmaz" (2014)" identifies" four" criteria" for" evaluating" grounded" theory" studies:"
credibility,"originality,"resonance,"and"usefulness,"with"the"first"two"increasing"the"value"
of"the"latter"two."I"reflected"on"and"shared"my"own"positionality"with"participants"as"an"
open" educator/researcher," presently" engaged" in" critical," qualitative," open" education"
research." I" also" constructed" the" study" so" that" participants" could" review" stages" of" the"
research"as"it"progressed."Each"participant"received"their"interview"transcript"as"well"as"
early" stages" of" the" concept" model" and" analysis," and" was" invited" to" correct," clarify," or"
expand"these." Three" participants"made" minor" changes"or" suggestions;" fifteen"returned"
specific"affirming"comments." All"additions" and" changes" suggested" by"participants"were"
incorporated"into"the"transcript"records"and"analysis."These"aspects"of"the"study"reflect"
my"own"commitment"to"accountability"and"ethical"research"practice,"but"also"contribute"
to" the" credibility" the" findings." Lather" (1991)" notes" that" returning" to"participants" with"
initial" findings," as" well" as" sy stematic" interaction" between" research er" and" participants,"
lessens" the" possibility" that" researchers" will" impose" meanings" on" situations" and" data"
instead"of"mutually"constructing"meanings"with"those"they"are"studying."
Findings!
Participants" described" a" wide" range"of" digital" and" pedagogical" practices" and" values;" a"
summary" of" these" is" shown" in" Table" 3." It" is" impossible" to" draw" a" clear" boundary"
between" educators" who" do" and" do" not" use" OEP." Instead" there" is" a" continuum" of"
practices" and" values" ranging" from" ‘closed’" to" open." A" complex" picture" emerges" of" a"
broad" range" of" educators:" some" open" (in"one" or" more" ways)," some" not;" some" moving"
towards"openness"(in"one"or"more"ways),"some"not;"but" all"thinking"deeply"about" their"
digital" and" pedagogical" decisions." This" concurs" with" other" research" findings" that"
configurations" of" openness" are" uneven" and" diverse" on" both" organisational" (Ehlers,"
2011)" and" individual" (Veletsianos," 2015)" levels." Overall," for" the" participants" in" this"
study,"‘using"OEP"’"was"primarily"characterised"by:"having"a"well-developed"open"digital"
identity;"using"social"media"for"personal"and"professional"use,"including"teaching;"using"
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both"a" VLE"and"open"tools;"using"and"reusing"OER;"valuing"both"privacy"and"openness;"
and"accepting"some"porosity"across"personal-professional"and"staff-student"boundaries.""
Table 3. Summary of participant’s digital and pedagogical practices and values on a
continuum of increasing openness
"
Using+OEP++
Fewer"than"half"of"the"educators"participating"in"the"study"(8"of"19)"used"OEP."Based"on"
participants’"own"descriptions,"two"distinct"forms"of"‘Using"OEP’"could"be"discerned:"(i)"
being* open,"and" (ii)" explicitly" teaching* openly." All" 8" open" educators" in" the" study"
demonstrated"the"former;" a" small"subset" also" demonstrated"the" latter." All" participants"
using" OEP" described" being* open"with" students," i.e." being" visible" online" and" sharing"
resources" in" open" online" spaces.* Each" has" an" open" digital" identity" and" shared" at" least"
one"of"their"profiles"with"students."A" small" subset" of"participants"who"used"OEP" chose"
not"only" to"be* open"with" their" students" but" also"to"teach* openly," i.e." to" create" learnin g"
and/or" assessment" activities" in" open" online" spaces*beyond" the" VLE." Teaching" openly"
took"different"forms," e.g." inviting" students"to"engage" in" discussion"via"Twitter," creating"
courses"in"WordPress"blogs,"and"encouraging"students"to"share"their"work"openly."
Participants"across"the"spectrum"of"‘closed’"to"open"practices"cited"both"pedagogical"and"
practical"concerns"regarding"the"use" of" OEP."These"included"lack"of" certainty"about"the"
pedagogical" value" of" OEP," concerns" about" students’" possible" over-use" of" social"media,"
reluctance" to" add" to" their" already" overwhelming" acade mic"workloads,"concerns"about"
excessive" noise" in" already" busy" social" media" streams," and" concerns" about" context"
collapse" (Marwick" &" boyd," 2010)," both" for" themselves" and" for" students." While" many"
participants"who"were"open"educators"acknowledged"potential"risks"to"using"OEP,"they"
considered"the" benefits"to"outweigh"the"risks."According"to"participants" who" used"OEP,"
benefits" for" students" included" feeling" more" connected" to" one" another" and" to" their"
lecturer," making"connections"between" course" theory/content" and" what’s"happening" in"
the"field"right" now," sharing"their"work" openly"with" authentic" audiences,"and" becoming"
part"of"their"future"professional"communities.""
8"
"
Dimensions+shared+by+open+educators+
After"exploring" the" extent" to" which"participants"used" open" practices"and" their" reasons"
for"choosing"OEP"or"not,"the" analysis"turned"towards"the"third"research"question."What"
dimensions"(values,"practices,"strategies)"were" shared"by"participants"who"used"OEP,"if"
any?" The" study" of" a" diverse" group" of" participants" proved" immensely" useful" here."
Comparisons" could" be" made" not" only" among" educators" who" used" open" practices," but"
also"between" those"who" used" open" practices"and" those" who" did" not." Four" dimensions"
emerged" of" participants" who" used" OEP:" balancing" privacy" and" openness," developing"
digital" literacies," valuing" social" learning," and" challenging" traditional" teaching" role"
expectations." The" first" two" dimensions" appear" to" be" interdependent," as" do" the" latter"
two." The" four" dimensions" (see" Figure" 1)" were" shared" variously" by" many" of" the"
participants,"however" all" four" were" evident" in" each" of" the" participants" who" used" OEP."
These" are" described" briefly"below" and" the" first" dimension" is" explored" in" detail" in" the"
Discussion"section."
"
Figure 1. Four dimensions shared by educators using OEP
Dimension*#1.*Balancing*privacy*and*openness*
Striving"for" a" balance" between" privacy" and" openness" emerged" as" the" primary" issue" of"
concern" for" participants" in" this" study." Those" who" used" OEP" described" a" variety" of"
strategies"for"balancing"privacy"and"openness,"as"networked"individuals"and"networked"
teachers."Although"participants"defined"privacy"in"different"ways,"none"said"they"did"not"
value" privacy." Strategies" for" managing" privacy" ranged" from" non-use" of" social" media"
altogether"to"using"particular"digital"practices"in"order"to"manage"it.""Interaction"in"open"
online" spaces" tends" to" blur" the" boundary" between" different" identities" and" roles."
Participants" described" boundary-keeping" activities" in" two" domains," personal-
professional"and"staff-student.""
Most"participants"expressed" a" preference" for" a" maintaining" a" boundary" between" their"
personal*and*professional"digital"identities"and" activities."Many"wanted"to" avoid" mixing"
streams" of" conversations" about" work" with" other" conversations" about" family," social"
activities," sports," politics," etc." This" mixing" of" streams," defined" by" Marwick" and" boyd"
(2010)"as"context"collapse,"is"described"by"Vitak"(2012)"as"“the"flattening"out"of"multiple"
distinct" audiences" in" one’s" social" network," such" that" people" from" different" contexts"
become" part" of" a" singular" group" of" message"recipients.”" Some" participants" accepted" a"
degree" of" context" collapse" or" porosity" across" the" personal-professional" boundary," e.g."
work" colleagues" becoming" friends" online" as" well" as" offline." However," an" ongoing"
9"
"
challenge"for"many"was"managing"interactions"along"this"boundary,"i.e."the"liminal"space"
between"the"personal"and"the"professional."Overall,"participants"described"various"ways"
of" managing" a" personal-professional" boundary," including" using" privacy" settings,"
maintaining"different"Facebook"profiles"(professional"and"personal),"and"using"different"
tools" for" different"purposes" (typically" Facebook" for" private/personal," Twitter" for"
public/professional).""
While" many" participants" spoke" of" the" importance" of" communicating" with" and"
supporting" students," most" also" described" their" desire" to" maintain" some" kind" of" staff-
student"boundary," both" online" and" offline." Most" participants" felt" it" was" “safest”" to"
communicate"online"with"students"via"the" VLE"and"email"only."Those"using"OEP"tended"
to"interact"with"students"in"open"online"spaces"rather"than"personal"online"spaces."This"
was" evident" in" the" number" of" participants" who" said" they" do" not" ‘friend’" students" on"
Facebook." However," some" created" Facebook" pages/groups" or" separate" professional"
Facebook"profiles" to" work" around" this." Twitter" was" seen" as" open" and" public" and" thus"
more"acceptable"by"some"as"a"tool"for"staff-student"interaction.""
Dimension*#2.*Developing*digital*literacies*
Another" dimension" shared" by" many" participants," including" all" who" used" OEP," was"
developing"digital"literacies,"for"self"and"students."Jisc"(2015)"defines"digital"literacies"as"
“capabilities"which"fit"an"individual"for"living,"learning"and"working"in"a"digital"society,”"
e.g." ICT" proficiency;" information," media" and" data" literacy;" digital" creation,"
communication" and" collaboration;" digital" learning" and" personal/professional"
development;"and" digital" identity"and" wellbeing."Participants"who" used"OEP" had"well-
developed"and"open"digital"identities"and"tended"to"be"proficient"users"of"social"media."
In" addition" to" building" their" own" digital" literacies" to" communicate," collaborate," learn"
and"teach,"many"also"sought"to"develop"the"digital"literacies"of"their"students,"exploring"
issues"such"as"digital"culture"and"privacy."
Many"participants"said"they"would"like"to"develop"stronger"or"“better”"digital"identities."
Some"felt"unsure"of"how"to"do"this,"or"how"do"it"well."Many"said"simply"that"they"did"not"
have" enough" time" to" develop" their" digital" identities." This" was" often" associated" with"
feelings"of"guilt:""
I*should*have*much*more.*I*should*have*my*own*web*presence,*a*comprehensive*
presence.*I*just*haven’t*gotten*around*to*it*–*like*101*other*things*on*my*list,*you*
know?*(participant*3,*not*using*OEP)*
Dimension*#3.*Value*social*learning*
A"third"dimension"shared"by"all"who"used"OEP"and"many"other"participants"was"valuing"
social" learning." Theories" of" social" learning" such" as" social" constructivism" and"
sociocultural"theory"emphasise"the"importance"of"learners"being"actively"involved"in"the"
learning"process"(Conole"&"Oliver,"2006;"McLoughlin"&"Lee,"2010)."Many"academic"staff"
value"social"learning,"whether"or"not"they"explicitly"identify"their"teaching"philosophies"
as" such." Most" participants" in" this" study" described" their" efforts" to" move" away" from" a"
didactic"lecturing"style"and"to"encourage"more"student"engagement."Not"all"participants"
who"encouraged"social"learning"used"OEP"in"their"teaching."Many"sought"to"create"social"
learning" activities" in" their" classroo ms" and" some" tried" to" do" this" within" the" VLE ." Thus,"
while"all"participants"who"used"OEP"valued"social"learning,"the"reverse"was"not"true.""
Dimension*#4.*Challenging*traditional*teaching*role*expectations*
Finally," participants" who" used" OEP" described" various" ways" that" they" challenged"
traditional"teaching"role"expectations."Some"spoke"in"terms"of"having"a"broader"identity,"
seeing"themselves"as"learners"as"well"as"teachers."One"open"educator"spoke"of"trying"to"
break"down"the"traditional"barrier"between"lecturer"and"student,"another"of"using"open"
10"
"
practices"explicitly"as"a"way"of" expressing"care"for"students."In"these"cases,"challenging"
traditional" teaching" role" expectations" may" be" seen" as" a" corollary" to" valuing" social"
learning," but" this" is" not" always" the" case." It" also" can" be" a" way" of" working" around"
structural"barriers."Adjunct"academic"staff,"for"example,"may"not"have"reliable"access"to"
institutional" email" or"the"VLE." In" such"cases," alternative"communication" channels"must"
be"used."One"participant"described"this"vividly:"
I*don’t*let*students*know*I’m*on*Twitter,*they*seem*to*figure*it*out.*It*depends*on*
what*email*account*I*reply*to*them*with.*Depending*on*the*teaching*or*contractual*
situation*in*any*given*year,*sometimes*the*[university]*email*account*just*
evaporates*and*I*have*to*fall*back*and*use*my*own*email*account.*My*personal*
email*signature*has*my*Twitter*name,*my*blog*-*the*[university]*account*just*has*
the*department*name.*(participant*8,*using*OEP)*
These"findings"are"explored"in"more"detail"in"the"following"section."
Discussion!!
This" study" explored" meaning-making" and" decision-making" by" university" educators"
regarding" whether," why" and" how" they" use" open" educational" practices" for" teaching." A"
number"of"academics"used" OEP;" the" majority" did"not."Participants"spoke"about"privacy"
and"openness"–"their"interpretations"of"these"and"the"relationship"between"them"–"more"
than"any"other"aspect" of" digital,"networked"practice." Across" all"participants,"both"using"
and" not" using" OEP," there" was" recognition" that" balancing" privacy" and" openness" is" an"
individual" decision" and " an" ongoing" challenge." In" the" words" of" o ne" participant:" “you’re"
negotiating"all"the"time.”""
Analysis"showed" that" participants"sought"to"balance"privacy"and"openness"in"their"use"
of" social" and" participatory" technologies" at" four" levels:" macro" (global" level)," meso"
(community/network" level)," micro" (individual" level)," and" nano" (interaction" level)."
Differentiating"between" these" levels" proved" helpful" in" understanding" decision-making"
around"open"practices"(see"Figure"2)."
"
Figure 2. Considering openness at 4 levels
At"the" macro"level,"individuals"make"decisions" about"whether" or" not" to"engage"in" open"
sharing" and" networking." Some" opt" out" at" this" level," while" those" who" engage" in" open"
practice" must" consider"questions" at" three" further" levels." At" the" meso"level,"individuals"
consider" whom" they" would" like" share" with"(e.g." family," friends," colleagues," students,"
community/interest"groups,"the"wider" public)" as" well"as"those"with" whom" they"do"not"
want" to" share." At" the" micro"level," individuals" make" decisions" about" their" digital"
identities,"i.e."who" they" will"share"as."And"at" the" nano"level,"individuals"decide" whether"
11"
"
to"interact/share"something" particular,"e.g."post," tweet" or"retweet,"use" a" specific"tag"or"
hashtag,"like,"follow"or"friend."""
Considering" these" four"levels" –" macro," meso," micro" and" nano" –" proved" helpful" in"
understanding" the" personal" and" complex" negotiations" involved" in" open" educational"
practices." Formal" and" informal" professional" development" initiatives"often" focus" at" the"
top"or"macro"level,"i.e."describing"the"benefits"of"sharing,"and"supporting"staff"in"learning"
how"to"use"various"tools."But"the"complex"and"ongoing"work"of"open"practice"happens"
beneath" this" level," at" the" meso," micro" and" nano" levels," where" issues" around" context"
collapse"and"digital"identity"are"negotiated."A"few"examples"from"this"study"are"included"
below,"to"illustrate."
At"the"macro"level,"educators"who"do"not"use"open" practices"may"have"various"reasons"
for"choosing"not"to"share"openly."For"example,"three"participants"in"this"study"recounted"
incidences"of" bullying"and/or" stalking"experienced" by"members" of"their"families," citing"
these"as"reasons"for"their"strong"attachment"to"personal"privacy"and"limited/non-use"of"
social"media."Others"described"wanting"simply"to"avoid"the"noise"of"open"streams:""
It’s*not*just*a*question*of*privacy.*It’s*a*question*of*having*a*bit*of*time*or*space*for*
myself.*I*need*a*tremendous*amount*of*solitude...*I*need*an*awful*lot*of*time*to*
think.*(participant*10,*not*using*OEP)*
At" the" meso" level," where" individuals"decide" whom" to" share" with," many" participants"
recounted"how"they"used"Facebook."In"some"cases,"decision-making"was"clear-cut:""
I*definitely*don’t*accept*friend*requests*from*people*I*don’t*know...*Facebook*does*
have*personal*information,*family*photographs,*things*like*that.*You*just*don’t*want*
to*share*with*the*world.*(participant*19,*using*OEP)*
In"other" cases" participants" described"more" nuanced"decisions," influenced" by" the"social"
norms"in"their"discipline:"
I’ve*used*privacy*settings*to*block*certain*things*that*I*post*from*professional*
colleagues*on*Facebook.*But*I*still*accept*their*invitations*because*I*think*it*would*
be*rude*not*to.*(participant*11,*using*OEP)*
At" the" micro" level," decisions" regarding" openness" relate" specifically" to" an" individual’s"
sense"of"their" own" digital"identity"and"their"sense"of" agency" in"managing"that" identity."
Some" participants" who" were" open" educators" saw" the" merits"of" having" an" open" digital"
identity"and"sharing"this"with"students:"
I*don’t*mind*having*all*these*profiles*or*students*being*able*to*look*me*up*or*know*
something*about*me.*I*think*that’s*probably*positive…*It’s*part*and*parcel*of*being*
an*academic.*(participant*17,*using*OEP)*
Others"have" well-developed"open" digital"identities"but"do" not" view" these"as"integral"to"
their"roles"as"educators:"
I*don’t*mind*if*students*follow*me*and*if*they*find*stuff*that*I’ve*written*online.*But*I*
just*don’t*encourage*it*as*part*of*the*teaching,*or*their*relationship*with*me*as*their*
teacher.*(participant*5,*not*using*OEP)*
Digital"identity"issues"raised"in"this"study"concur"with"findings"from"previous"studies"by"
Veletsianos"(2013)" and"others"indicating"“an" increasing"tension" between" personal" and"
professional" identity," the" spectrum" of" sharing" that" lies" between" the" two," and" the"
perception"of"what"a"scholar"is"and"what"she/he"does”"(p."44).""
Finally,"at"the"nano"level,"individuals"make"decisions"about"individual"open"transactions,"
e.g." Will" I" share" this?" For" many" participants" in" this" study," regardless" of" their" level" of"
openness," open" practice" is" experienced" as" a" process" of" continual" reflection" and"
negotiation,""and"occasionally"anxiety:"
12"
"
It’s*not*that*I*think*people*in*the*quad*are*watching*our*every*move*or*anything*like*
that.*But*occasionally*you*do*think,*maybe*I’ll*be*careful.*(participant*14,*not*using*
OEP)*
Open" practice" is" not" a" one-time" decision." It" is" a" succession" of" personal," complex" and"
nuanced" decisions." As" illustrated" in" this" study," individual" agency" with" respect" to"
openness" is" influenced" by" both" structure" and" culture." Individuals" will" always" be"
motivated"by"personal"values."However,"in"an"institution"without"an"explicit"strategy"or"
policy"regarding"openness,"individual"educators"were"influenced"by"that"absence"as"well"
as" by" disciplinary" cultural" norms" and" broader" social" norms" when" exercising" their"
agency"with"respect"to"open"practice.""""
Many"open"practitioners"characterise"openness"as"not"just"a"practice"but"an"ethos,"a"way"
of" being," a" commitment" to" democratic" practices" (e.g." Mackness," 2013;" Neylon," 2013)."
While"this"may"be"the"underlying"motivation"for"many"open"educators,"it"is"not"a" valid"
assumption"for"all"open"educators."Adjunct"academic" staff," for" example," operate" with"a"
different"set"of"structural"constraints."For"some,"lack"of"access"to"institutional"tools"may"
act" as" a" driver" to" adopt" open" practices;" others"may" choose" to" avoid" the" risks" of" open"
practice"due"to"the"precarity"of"their"positions."
One"aspect"of"OEP"which"did"not"emerge"in"a"significant"way"in"this"study"was"the"use"of"
OER."None" of"the"participants"spontaneously"mentioned"OER" or" open" licensing."Where"
sharing" of" resources" arose" during" interviews," I" asked" participants" about" their" use" of"
open"resources."Discussion" of" copyright," licensing,"and"OER" then" ensued." This"suggests"
that" the" relationship" between" OER" and" OEP" may" be" more"complex" than" sometimes"
conceived."Wiley"(2015)"notes"that"use"of"OER"leads"to"OEP."This"study"suggests"that"the"
reverse" can" also" be" true:" use" of" OEP," specifically" networked" participation" and" open"
pedagogy," can" lead" to" OER" awareness" and" use." Archer" (2003)" notes" that"
structural/cultural" properties" have" generative" powers" of" constraint" and" enablement."
Where"openness"is"not"“infused”"at"an"institution"(Veletsianos,"2015),"as"in"this"case,"the"
absence" of" open" education" policy" acts" as" a" constraint" to" OER" awareness" and" use."
However,"the"nascent"and"growing"use"of"OEP"may"lead"individual"educators"to"develop"
PLNs" (Personal" Learning" Networks)" through" which" they" become" aware" of" broader"
issues"around"openness,"including"OER.""
Conclusions!
Use"of"OEP"by"educators"is"complex,"personal,"contextual,"and"continuously"negotiated."
The" findings" of" this" study" highlight" a" number" of" key" issues" for" higher" education"
practitioners," researchers," managers," and" policy" makers." Open" education" promises"
much." But" attention" must" be"paid" to" the" actual" experiences" and" concerns" of" staff" and"
students;" empirical" research" should" inform" open" education" policy." In" addition," a"
growing" body" of" research" advocates" greater" theorisation" and" critical" analysis" of"
openness" and" open" education" (see" Bell," 2016;" Edwards," 2015;" Gourlay," 2015;" Knox,"
2013;"Watters,"2014)."Recognition"of"the"complexities"and" risks"of"openness,"as"well"as"
the" benefits" –" for" individuals" as" well" as" institutions" –" should" inform" both" policy" and"
practice.""
In"their"study"of"institutional"culture"and"OER"policy,"Cox"and"Trotter"(2016)"found"that"
appropriate" institutional" policies" alone" cannot" ensure" sustainable" engagement" with"
OER:" “institutional" culture" mediates" the" role" that" policy" plays" in" academics'" decision"
making”."The"same"may"be"true"for"OEP."Further"research"in"this"area"would"be" useful;"
i.e." studies" of" situated" practices" in" specific" places" and" times," enabling" detailed"
exploration" of" agency," structure," and" culture" with" respect" to" OEP." At" a" minimum,"
however,"the" findings" of" this" study" highlight" the" need" for" institutions" to" work" broadly"
and" collaboratively" to" build" and" support" academic" staff" capacity" in" three" key" areas:"
13"
"
developing"digital"literacies"and"digital"capabilities;"supporting"individuals"in"navigating"
tensions"between" privacy"and" openness;" and," critically,"reflecting" on" the"role" of"higher"
education" and" our" roles" as" educators" and" researchers" in" an" increasingly" open" and"
networked"society.""
The"research"study"described"here" is" limited"in"scope;"it" explores" the"experiences" of"a"
relatively" small" number" of" academic" staff" at" one" university." However," it" extends" and"
complements" the" literature," offering" opportunities" for" further" research" and"
collaboration."This"study"comprised"Phase"1"of"my"PhD"research"study"on"OEP"in"higher"
education." Two" further" phases" are" currently" in" process." Phase" 2" is" a" survey" of" all"
academic"staff"at"the"same"university"and"Phase"3"follows"two"open"educators"and"their"
students" in" exploring" how" academic" staff" and" students" interact" and" negotiate" their"
digital"identities"in"open"online"spaces."""
Acknowledgements!
My"thanks"to"each"of" the"participants"in"this"study:"without"your"generosity,"frankness"
and" support," this" work" would" not" have" been" possible." Many" thanks" to" my" PhD"
supervisor," Iain" MacLaren," for" feedback" and" support" throughout" the" course" of" my"
research," and" to" my" Graduate" Research" Committee:" Simon" Warren," Mary" Fleming,"
Katheryn"Cormican,"Kelly"Coate."Finally,"thanks"to"Frances"Bell,"Caroline"Kuhn,"and"Leo"
Havemann"for"reviewing"early"versions"of"this"paper,"and"to"three"anonymous"reviewers"
from"this"journal"for"their"insightful"and"useful"feedback." "
14"
"
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... Also, Cox and Trotter (2016) note that although institutional policies are important, institutional culture is key in mediating between those policies and academics' decision making. This view is shared by Cronin (2017), who argues that individual agency as educators, related to OEP, is influenced by structure and culture, in that an explicit strategy or policy concerning openness and disciplinary cultural norms and broader social norms is lacking. On the other hand, institutional variables such as the type of education the institution offers or the characterisation of the type of OER supply influence the frequency of OER use (Andrade et al., 2011). ...
... The results obtained in our comparative study support the findings from previous literature and reaffirm the importance of enablers and barriers in the institutional context in terms of infrastructure, policies, quality and change (Cox & Trotter, 2016;Murphy, 2013). Funding, cultural/institutional norms, and institutional policies seem to be the most important factors at this meso level worldwide (Cronin, 2017; and, therefore, are recommended to be analysed and clearly defined in each HEI. Using the OPAL OEP matrix could be a good way for HE administrators and leadership to start analysing OEP in their institutions and plan for future action in order to boost OEP and use, creation, sharing and repurposing of OER (Conole, 2012). ...
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... One can therefore start from either a narrower or a broader understanding of the term. Similarly, Cronin (2017) distinguishes between these two perspectives and comes up with one inclusive definition: ...
... This perspective goes beyond the provision of open teaching and learning materials, which is why the mandatory linking of OER with OEP is just one possible interpretation (cf. Cronin, 2017;Fahrer et al., 2022). While the concept of OEP has historically grown out of the context of OER development, it has evolved into a multidimensional construct with unclear boundaries. ...
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Participatory approaches to teaching and learning are experiencing a new lease on life in the 21st century as a result of the rapid Participatory approaches to teaching and learning are experiencing a new lease on life in the 21st century as a result of the rapid technology development. Knowledge, practices, and toolscan be shared across spatial and temporal boundaries in higher education by means of Open Educational Resources, Massive Open Online Courses, and open-source technologies. In this context, the Open Education Movement calls fornew didactic approaches that encourage greater learner participation in formal higher education. Based on a representative literature review and focus group research, in this study an analytical framework was developed that enables researchers and practitioners to assess the form of participation in formal, collaborative teaching and learning practices. The analytical framework is focused on the micro-level of higher education, in particular on the interaction between students and lecturers when organizing the curriculum. For this purpose, the research reflects anew on the concept of participation, taking into account existing stage models for participation in the educational context. These are then brought together with the dimensions of teaching and learning processes, such as methods, objectives and content, etc. This paper aims to make a valuable contribution to the opening up of learning and teaching, and expands the discourse around possibilities for interpreting Open Educational Practices.
... OE policies ideally should be designed with an expansive focus on a broad range of OEP, not only to foster OER, but also to support innovation in learning and teaching, encouraging and empowering students and educators to experiment by reusing and adapting content and practices, and co-creating knowledge (Teixeira et al., 2013;Cronin, 2017;Croft & Brown, 2020;Proudman, Santos-Hermosa & Smith, 2020). It is vital to consider the relationships between policy, stakeholder groups, and pre-existing open, digital and other policies, initiatives and practices, with which the OE policy should ideally dovetail. ...
... OE can support innovative pedagogical and approaches as well as widen participation, not just by facilitating access to content, but by fostering communities of open practice (Cronin, 2017). Through sharing practices as well as resources, educators can adapt activities and designs of others, as well as developing students' abilities to collaboratively (co-)construct knowledge in the open (Havemann, 2016). ...
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... So, digital technology education drew attention of teaching-learning system. Open educational practices have increased substantially over the past decade (Cronin 2017), (Ehlers n.d.), (Nascimbeni et al. 2018), (Weller et al. 2018), adoption of open educational practices (OEP) including open educational resources (OER) more widely across the institution remains complex. Therefore, mindfulness practices are needed for everyone. ...
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In the higher education, mindfulness has not enough percentage in using technology. So, nowadays mindfulness practices are given to students in many ways by educational institutions. In India, education is broadly expected to grow at sustained high rates by 2030. These strong estimates have much to do with the educational profile of the country. India is listed as one of the educated countries because student’s population are greater than illiterate people. Nowadays, development of education is rapid and a large number of students possess high level in digital education. Accordingly, the current education setup is favouring to use open educational practices platform. It helps to change the teacher - centred education method. Accordingly, the curriculum of teacher education has been transformed to technology education (Mwalongo 2012).
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This chapter explores the phenomena of OER and OEP and their relationship to social inclusion in developing countries. It asks the question: Whether, why, and how do OER and OEP contribute to the social inclusion of underserved communities in the Global South by widening access to education, encouraging educational participation, and fostering empowerment of educators and learners? To answer this question, we analyze findings from the Research on Open Educational Resources for Development (ROER4D) project,2 which focuses on OER and OEP activities in three regions: South America, sub-Saharan Africa, and South and Southeast Asia. ROER4D consists of eighteen subprojects with more than 100 participating researchers and research associates in Afghanistan, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ghana, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Malaysia, Mauritius, Mongolia, Pakistan, the Philippines, Somalia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Uganda, Uruguay, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. This chapter starts by presenting a conceptual framing of the concepts of OER, OEP, and social inclusion. Next, it provides perspectives on how OER and OEP relate to social inclusion, as gleaned from the academic literature. Then it describes the meta-analytical methodology employed here. Finally, it goes through the findings as they pertain to the relationship between ROER4D’s subprojects’ data and OER and OEP, as well as summarizing the key points of this chapter.
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Teacher education continues to pose a formidable challenge to the Global South. The Covid-19 pandemic has exacerbated the lack of qualified teachers. Together with qualified staff, it is clear that relevant and local teaching-learning resources are essential if governments wish to enhance the teaching and learning processes. Solutions to the lack of qualified teachers/educators/lecturers and to that of localised resources (such as Open Textbooks) are not easily encountered. We propose a novel community-based approach (Ferreira-Meyers & Dhakulkar, 2021) to tackle this dual challenge by innovative use of technology. Our proposed approach is based on the principles embedded in the Open Science Framework (OSF) and envisions creation of grassroot-level communities of practices via networking of teachers and students. In this work we present a model through which the principle of openness can be put into practice for teacher education and address the various challenges in this task. The model makes use of different OSF aspects to create a teacher-student community of practice with a peer network of “critical friends”. It offers the opportunity to extend “openness” to teachers and students by fostering sharing, collaboration while also focusing on self-directed learning and constructionist pedagogy.
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Dünyanın yeni bir ekonomik paradigmaya her zamankinden daha fazla ihtiyacı var. Özellikle son iki yüzyılda, başta Batı Avrupa ve ABD olmak üzere ülkeler ekonomik olarak çok hızlı büyümüş görünüyor. Bu agresif büyüme toplumların kaldırabileceğinin ötesinde zorluklar getirdi. Sürdürülebilirlik kavramı içerisinde “döngüsel ekonomi” uygulamaları, dünyanın üstesinden gelmeye çalıştığı kontrolsüz üretim ve sorumsuz tüketim sorununa çözümler sunmaktadır. Ekonomiden çevreye, eğitimden yerel yönetim politikalarına, finanstan ticarete kadar birçok alanda döngüsel ekonomi çerçevesinde yaklaşımlar geliştirilmektedir. “Döngüsel Ekonomi ve Sürdürülebilir Hayat” kitabı, döngüsel ekonomiyi kavramsal açıdan tartışıyor ve gerekliliğini sorguluyor. Sonrasında alanda uzman yazarların kaleme aldığı bölümlerle bu kavramın uygulamalarına odaklanıyor. Bu kitabın özgün yanı, sadece döngüsel ekonominin tanımına odaklanmamasıdır. Sermaye piyasaları, değer zincirleri işgücü piyasası, kripto paralar, işletmelerin yönetimi gibi iktisadi konuların yanında eğitim ve çevre başlıklarındaki pratiklere de kitapta yer veriliyor.
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p>Several scholars and organizations suggest that institutional policy is a key enabling factor for academics to contribute their teaching materials as open educational resources (OER). But given the diversity of institutions comprising the higher education sector—and the administrative and financial challenges facing many institutions in the Global South—it is not always clear which type of policy would work best in a given context. Some policies might act simply as a “hygienic” factor (a necessary but not sufficient variable in promoting OER activity) while others might act as a “motivating” factor (incentivizing OER activity either among individual academics or the institution as a whole). In this paper, we argue that the key determination in whether a policy acts as a hygienic or motivating factor depends on the type of institutional culture into which it is embedded. This means that the success of a proposed OER-related policy intervention is mediated by an institution’s existing policy structure , its prevailing social culture and academics’ own agency (the three components of what we’re calling “institutional culture”). Thus, understanding how structure, culture, and agency interact at an institution offers insights into how OER policy development could proceed there, if at all. Based on our research at three South African universities, each with their distinct institutional cultures, we explore which type of interventions might actually work best for motivating OER activity in these differing institutional contexts.</p
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This paper explores the implications of learners' and educators' appropriation of Social Networking Sites (SNS) for informal open, networked and connected learning through the lens of learner practices within sociotechnical assemblages. Relevant themes identified from the literature are the impact of an advocacy approach in open, networked and connected learning; the mutuality of openness and closure; time-space online; connective and dis-connective practices and heterotopias. A theory of Disconnective Practice has been developed by Light in relation to SNS that helps us to understand practice through considering disconnection as well as the more usual perspective of connection. Mejias' critique of the nodocentric view presented by SNS can help by alerting us to the concept of paranodes, spaces that lie beyond the logic of the network. Providers of SNS benefit from connection, media production and sharing by members that enhance their advertising services. I explore heterotopias, unsettling fragmentary places, in open practice using two vignettes of PhD students, one in a social context and another in a research context. The first vignette explores the global nature of context and culture collapse across SNS, as a student moves to a different country and culture to undertake PhD study. This vignette highlights the impact of the combination of persistent data and (hyper)connection to extended and invisible audiences. The second vignette explores how different regimes of Open Access publishing operate within the politics of Higher Education (HE) contexts. Although heterotopias are important to open, networked and connected learning they can be difficult to achieve: disconnective practice can help. Networks crave connection and resist our scrutiny. Thus learners need to be able to practice disconnection as well as connection, and be able and prepared to challenge the logic of SNS and institutional systems. How can digital literacy practices of learners and teachers take account of learning on SNS when the focus of SNS is to benefit advertising services that are the actual customers?
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Like any other educational resource, the integration of OER in teaching and learning requires careful thought and support for the teaching staff. The Faculty of Education at the Open University of Sri Lanka approached this challenge with the help of a professional development course on OER-based e-Learning. Modules in the course incorporated the use of authentic learning scenarios with learning tasks that facilitated capacity building in a collaborative manner. This paper reports the impact of this course in shifting their perspectives and practices in relation to open educational practices. In addition to a much richer grasp of conceptual knowledge and skills related to searching, identifying, evaluating and integrating OER, participants developed competencies in designing, developing and implementation of an OER-based e-Learning course.
Chapter
This chapter begins by reviewing the many definitions of the term open educational resources and concludes by discussing challenges and opportunities for the approach. Open educational resources (OER) are educational materials either licensed under an open copyright license or in the public domain. Neither the term "open educational resources" nor the term "open" itself has an agreed upon definition in the literature. Research regarding open educational resources focuses on methods of producing OER, methods of sharing OER, and the benefits of OER. Significant issues relating to OER remain unresolved, including business model and discovery problems. © Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014. All rights reserved.
Article
Attitudes are changing in education globally to promote the open sharing of educational courses and resources. The aim of this study was to explore staff awareness and attitudes toward ‘open educational resources’ (OER) as a benchmark for monitoring future progress. Faculty staff (n=6) were invited to participate in semi-structured interviews which facilitated the development of a questionnaire. Staff respondents (n=50) were not familiar with the term OER but had a clear notion of what it meant. They were familiar with open content repositories within the university but not externally. A culture of borrowing and sharing of resources exists between close colleagues, but not further a field, and whilst staff would obtain resources from the Internet they were reticent to place materials there. Drivers for mobilising resources included a strong belief in open education, the ability of OER to enhance individual and institutional reputations, and economic factors. Barriers to OER included confusion over copyright and lack of IT support. To conclude, there is a positive collegiate culture within the faculty, and overcoming the lack of awareness and dismantling the barriers to sharing will help advance the open educational practices, benefiting both faculty staff and the global community.
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A central question of social theory is: How do society's objective features influence its members to reproduce or transform society through their actions? This volume examines how objective social conditioning is mediated by the subjective reflexivity of individuals. On the basis of a series of in-depth interviews, Margaret S., Archer identifies the mediatory mechanism as "internal conversations" that are expressed in forms governing agents’ responses to social conditioning, their individual patterns of social mobility, and whether or not they contribute to social stability or change.
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The 'tribes and territories' metaphor for the cultures of academic disciplines and their roots in different knowledge characteristics has been used by those interested in university life and work since the early 1990s. This book draws together research, data and theory to show how higher education has gone through major change since then and how social theory has evolved in parallel. Together these changes mean there is a need to re-theorise academic life in a way which reflects changed contexts in universities in the twenty-first century, and so a need for new metaphors.
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While industries such as music, newspapers, film and publishing have seen radical changes in their business models and practices as a direct result of new technologies, higher education has so far resisted the wholesale changes we have seen elsewhere. However, a gradual and fundamental shift in the practice of academics is taking place. Every aspect of scholarly practice is seeing changes effected by the adoption and possibilities of new technologies. This book will explore these changes, their implications for higher education, the possibilities for new forms of scholarly practice and what lessons can be drawn from other sectors.