Key issues in Open Educational Resources.
Exploring OER issues
After careful reading of the OER Research Hub evidence report and its 11 OER evidence hypothesis I was trying to understand what they were talking about, mostly because it seems to me that OER definition by UKOER* is a very vague at best and very wide to say the least.
So before jumping on the issues in hand, I had to come to terms with a few things:
First is a report that is based on a lot of assumptions of what education is by a community of practice so diverse that it is difficult to see a clear line of research even less agree in what is evidence in a field charged by different pedagogies, epistemologies, objectives and purposes.
For example, is not clear form an analytic post of view the relationships between, an OER or an Open Educational Tool, Or is a MOOC, or is it Formal or Informal, is it use to provide a paid degree or just for fun, where are the ethical debates if it is used for marketing or does subject areas like literature, maths or arts have the same impact or way to analyze it, just to name a few.
Most importantly, there is no epistemological approach on how to address assumptions on the scope of education, what education is or what it should be, thus the first key issue at hand with this research is epistemological, to have a clear understanding of all stakeholders, all interactions and each one at a relevant category, the right framework and tools needed to do efficient research.
So, the best I can do is to do this exercise from my own experience, which is not in the educational sector, I have no experience as a teacher, I am not from an anglo speaking country which means that most of my observations will be not understood at best or misunderstood at worst.
In this line and to make this research of a wider reach, the 11th hypothesis should be analyzed or developed within frameworks that allow to make better use of the gathered information and even formulate more precise questions.
I would propose to work in 4 frameworks that could use the different hypothesis.
OER Conceptual Framework is at the crux of this research it is important to define what it means to be OER within different contexts as well debates about different approaches to OER, for hypothesis B, C, G, H, J, K
A Technical Framework would differ from environment to environment, OER as understood could be use in many circumstances and contexts for which hypothesis C, G, J could be a good start.
A Financial Framework is almost obligatory to be used in different contexts, many of the assumptions and problems of OER, for example is clear in this report that higher education runs under the assumption that it has to be paid, models such as public school on higher levels seems to be ignored or not acceptable, in order to do good research this assumptions needs to be stated if not there is a bias in the research as it can be seen in hypothesis D, F, G, H, I, J
An Educational or Pedagogical framework that covers students approaches to study or teaching strategies for teachers, or the differences between subject areas (sciences different to arts) or simply the purpose of the study has to be address, in this particular framework can be drawn from most of the hypothesis in this report A, B, C, E, F, G, H, I, K
* The following broad definition of OER from OER Commons seems to be generally accepted by the community:
Open Educational Resources (OER) are teaching and learning materials that are freely available online for everyone to use, whether you are an instructor, student or self-learner. Examples of OER include: full courses, course modules, syllabi, lectures, homework assignments, quizzes, lab and classroom activities, pedagogical materials, games, simulations, and many more resources contained in digital media collections from around the world
** Hypothesis A Performance
Hypothesis B Openness
Hypothesis C Access
Hypothesis D Retention
Hypothesis E Reflection
Hypothesis F Finance
Hypothesis G Indicators
Hypothesis H Support
Hypothesis I Transition
Hypothesis J Policy
Hypothesis K Assessment