Recent years have seen significant progress made in the creation and sharing of Open Educational Resources. It remains a struggle to foster open online educational experiences, particularly in resource-constrained environments. Choosing and supporting tools, convincing peers and partners to take risks — these are all as difficult to do now as ever. At times, the current discourse around learning environments seems to have hardened between the provision of centrally-managed and rigidly controlled systems, and the wide-open “personal cyberinfrastructure” approach.
The intent of this session is to foster a discussion to address these tensions. From the lens of a smallish open online university in Canada, a few ongoing developments will be surveyed, such as the Reclaim/Domain of One’s Own movement, Connected Courses, and the course framework for the OERu network. It will also propose and hopefully demonstrate an approach to simple, discrete, task-oriented open tools intended to provide an inviting on-ramp to open practice, to minimize support needs, and to work around concerns of student privacy and data collection.
It is hoped that discussing these developments might lead to a set of principles, suggestions and warnings to guide the future development of convivial, publicly-engaged and learning-centred online spaces.