Open Educational Repositories (OERs) were initiated with reference to the three freedoms, namely, the freedom to study a work and apply knowledge offered from it; freedom to redistribute copies of it; freedom to make improvements or other changes. Quite obviously the whole point was to give authors control over the integrity of their work and the right to be properly acknowledged and cited, but also, in more revolutionary or contemporary terms, to equip them with mechanisms of allowing the spread of their work by means of sharing it with other interested parties and stakeholders.
Sharing classic material is usually straightforward and users face no real issues. However, modern pedagogic approaches, especially in health/medical education, demand more student centred activities like problem based learning and virtual patients. The latter form of education presents certain challenges when it comes to sharing resources between educators.
ePBLnet  is an EC-funded supra-regional project across Eastern Europe, South-East Asia and the Caucuses. It is modernising the medical curricula in six institutions in Georgia, Ukraine and Kazakhstan, by means of following a problem based learning and a virtual patient approach and reshaping semester structure. The remit is to build networks and develop dissemination activities to form a sustainable network across EurAsia. In such an endeavor resource sharing among educators becomes a crucial success factor.
In this paper we present an investigation of the appropriateness of sharing platforms acorss different cultures and educator capacities and literacies.
We compare three different OERs. The first one is a content sharing platform developed in the mEducator project , called, mEducator3.0/MELINA+ , . The second one is the OpenLabyrinth platform which is a dedicated virtual patient repository . The third one is the MS SharePoint online platform. Educators from 9 different Medical Schools participate in this investigation and express their opinions and perceived benefits of each platform. Qualitative data collection is done by means of guided interviews and an online survey with many open questions.
Results and Discussion
Preliminary analysis indicates that different issues emerge when it comes to the comparison of commercial and non-commercial/open-source systems. Cultural dependencies are obvious, but the main drivers of the users choices seems to be associated with the perceived easiness/friendliness as well as the sustainability capacities of the various systems.
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 Dafli E., Antoniou P., Ioannidis L., Dombros N., Topps D., Bamidis PD, “Virtual patients on the Semantic Web: semantically extending OpenLabyrinth to facilitate re-purposing and exchange of case-based educational resources”, JMIR 2014, In Press.