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Join us on Monday 27 Nov from 10.00-11.00 (AEST) and contribute to planning this Fishbowl.  Read on for more details, and then join us via Zoom (https://usq.zoom.us/j/575665311). 


2017 is being celebrated as the International Year of Open, but what do we really have to celebrate in Australia?

Open_Shield_Public_Domain_image_from_Pixabay.pngOur team will be participating in a Fishbowl session at ASCILITE2017, held in Toowoomba, Australia.  The session encourages participants to reflect on the actual progress of openness in Australia.  The tone of the Fishbowl is one of constructive critique, examining whether open education in particular has a robust enough following, and evidence of outcomes to become part of mainstream education.  In the lead up to the conference, we’ll be offering the different viewpoints of the initial session chairs, and inviting you to post comments that can be incorporated into our content - essentially we’re openly developing the structure of our Fishbowl (which are transparent by nature, of course).

The first post is from Amelia Dowe, Learning Advisor, and Catherine Wattiaux, Manager (Copyright).

 Please leave your comments below.

Many parts of the world have integrated Open Educational Practice (OEP) into their learning environments with the proactive support of UNESCO, and a growing international movement. Funded schemes, networks of universities such as the Open Textbook Network, and the efforts of individual practitioners all support a growing evidence base of research and good practice. For example, many African countries are meeting the needs of their students using OEP, reusing and repurposing study materials for students who might not otherwise be able to access them. In our own context in Australia, OEP remains a fringe topic, particularly for many educators in Higher Education.  Whilst researchers have embraced open access publishing, and open access to published outcomes via institutional repositories, learning and teaching resources in higher ed have not enjoyed the same level of commitment; which is an interesting disconnect between two of the core roles of academic staff.  It would appear that significant barriers remain here to the widespread uptake of OEP.

Many educators use open educational resources (OER). However, a few create open resources for others. Reasons for that are:

  • Technical skills are missing - practitioners find it too complicated to create resources
  • OER are distributed - there is no ‘one single place’ to find OER, they are scattered in repositories globally
  • Guidelines are missing - practitioners are unsure of how to create OER, and if doing so aligns with their local policy
  • OER is not a priority -  people say creating OER is too time-consuming, and there is a lack of reward and recognition for engaging with OER

Currently, it can be said that everyone likes openness in education, but examples of practice are disconnected and isolated in the Australian environment.

Shop_Public_Domain_Image_from_Pixabay.jpgWhat do you think? Do you practice openness in your education? What do you think make open practices a default? Tell us on Twitter #OEPfishbowl or comment below.

This series of blog posts will introduce some of the barriers to the adoption of Open Educational Practice in Australia we have identified. We value your voice in these discussions - join us by tweeting your thoughts #OEPfishbowl or by attending our live Open Fishbowl at the 2017 ASCILITE Conference at the University of Southern Queensland, Toowoomba Campus on the 5th December 2017.