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Open educational resources in the optimal mix

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Open educational resources in the optimal mix

This week is the Open Education Week. Robert Schuwer, team leader of the Digital (open) educational resources zone, and Kirsten Veelo, temporary connector of the Digital (open) educational resources zone and project leader Open Educational Resources at SURF, write about their insights.

“From 2 to 6 March, it’s Open Education Week. Worldwide attention will be paid to open learning materials, open courses, and open education. The aim of this week is to create more awareness among teachers, lecturers, students, staff and management about the opportunities and possibilities open forms of education can offer.

The Towards digital (open) educational resources zone is working to realise its ambition to enable students and teachers to compile and use their optimal mix of digital educational resources as easily as possible. Such a mix will, in many cases, consist of both open and closed educational resources. The added value of open educational resources in such a mix is ​​multiple: it increases the number of educational resources that are available and fits in with education, it contributes to lowering barriers to access to educational resources, it potentially contributes to more efficiency in creating educational resources as it’s possible to build on available educational recourses, and it makes didactic teaching methods possible that can’t be realised, or are (too) difficult to achieve without open educational resources. This added value ultimately contributes to a better quality of education and student success.

The team is working on lowering the barriers to large-scale adoption of digital (open) educational resources. For example, work is being done on a platform where digital educational resources can be found and shared and where professional communities of teachers can go to match supply and demand and to define and monitor the quality of the collection. We also would like to ensure mixing with commercial materials is easier to realise under conditions acceptable to all parties involved. And finally, we would like to take steps towards more recognition of and appreciation for sharing and reusing open educational resources for lecturers.

Also outside the zone, there’s a lot going on around open learning materials. We therefore work closely with parties such as SURF, SIG Open Education, and the libraries working group Open Online Education to realise the ambitions. Stay tuned for further developments in our zone!”

This column appeared in the Acceleration Plan newsletter of March 5, 2020. Read the news letter here.

Robert Schuwer

Team leader zone Digital (open) educational resources
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