Open Ed COP Notes January 11th

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Present: Natasha Boskic, Jenn Burt, Yau Man Cheung, Tony Dorcey, kele fleming, Lynn Fujino, Alex Lougheed, Andre Malan, Jeff Miller, Rob Peregoodoff, Richard Spencer, Erica Frank, Catherine Paul, Brian Lamb

Viewed webinar Continuous Improvement in Teaching and Learning: Open Learning Initiative (OLI) and Open Learning Net (OLnet) by Candace Thille - archive should be available soon. (ELI membership is required - UBC is a member institution, so you can view it after setting up a profile on the site).

  • Webinar examined OLI (http://oli.web.cmu.edu/openlearning) at some depth. OLI is somewhat distinct as an open education project in that its courses are rigorously designed, and its virtual platform's approach to using 'real-time data', embedding assessment into every activity
    • A group of participants (Brian, Richard, Erica, Jeff) expressed interest in coordinating communications with OLI to explore collaboration and/or partnership possibilities
  • There was some discussion of the broader model represented by work like the OLI. Richard observed that the role of textbooks may serve as a comparison for a resource in which reuse is acceptable to instructors; OLI points to new affordances made possible by technology; its practice is backed by evidence; and good work persists... "Moving teaching from 'craft industry' to model 'industrial production' - new economies of scale; lowers cost, higher quality. Releasing instructors to use their time more effectively. The problematic associations with the word "industrial" were noted... -- Robert argued the inherent tension between the notion of 'industrial' affordances for practices which are said to foster more creative and individualized learning
  • Discussion on open textbooks, and potential to implement a relatively mature set of open resources that may have direct impact on the affordability of survey courses. Alex forwarded a set of names in positions across the campus who should be contacted.
    • The issue of open textbooks will be taken up in coming weeks, perhaps with a dedicated subcommittee.
  • The OLnet (http://olnet.org/) part of Thille's presentation was much less detailed, and the work around the adaptation and reuse of OERs is obviously much less developed. Erica noted a major initiative she is involved with dedicated the ambitious goal of educating tens of thousands of health care practitioners via their platform; populating curricular needs via existing open content collections
  • Tony Dorcey offered a couple dissenting notes: the "abysmal" production quality of a webinar broadcast in a seminar room; and that discussion to that point had been focused too narrowly on science courses, and introductory courses. His own work (Institute for Resources, Environment and Sustainability) builds graduate courses around open public resources as a matter of practice. -- BL: We have had examples of open ed practice from other disciplines at previous events.


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Other notes:

Piloting a simple OER search based on http://freelearning.ca - see: http://blogs.ubc.ca/open/ubc-oer-search/ A targeted version of this approach was built for UBC Habitat Exchange (with Tony Dorcey and others) - http://www.chs.ubc.ca/archives/?q=node/1089

A search portal using this approach featuring UBC-hosted open resources is in process. If there are are sites that should be indexed, or profiled in the complementary public directory, please pass them on to Brian.

Potential topics and guests for future meetings were discussed.