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Tag Archives: Open Education Week

Open Education Week 2017: The Potential of Open Education

Happy Open Education Week! 2017 marked the fourth year of celebrating international Open Education Week at Virginia Tech. The Open Education Week planning committee set goals to meet felt needs of faculty on campus and to encourage student communication with faculty regarding the impact of learning resources on student learning.

Cost is always an issue. The committee agreed that we wanted to do something more positive than focus on barriers to learning, so we chose the theme “The Potential of Open Education.” What is Open Education anyway?  Open Education includes pedagogies, practices, and resources which reduce barriers to learning.  “Open Education combines the traditions of knowledge sharing and creation with 21st century technology to create a vast pool of openly shared educational resources, while harnessing today’s collaborative spirit to develop educational approaches that are more responsive to learner’s needs.” Source: Open Education Consortium

Two faculty and graduate student oriented events featured local and invited speakers, including live and live-streamed:

Seven Platforms You Should Know About: Share, Find, Author, or Adapt Creative Commons-Licensed Resources

Thanks to Kayla McNabb for setup of the video below and Neal Henshaw for editing.

Creative Commons licenses allow no-cost access, redistribution, remix, and reuse with attribution. This session is for faculty (and others) who want to know about platforms which enable sharing, finding, creating, and/or adapting of openly licensed or public domain resources. This session featured live demos by expert users or creators of VTechWorks, Merlot, the Open Textbook Library, OER Commons, VT’s Odyssey Learning Object Repository, Overleaf (formerly WriteLaTex), Pressbooks, and the Rebus Open textbook editing community.

The event handout “Where to find, share, author and adapt Open Educational Resources? A Selection of No-Cost Platforms” is available here; also check out links from the Seven Platforms program.

The Potential of Open Educational Resources: Virginia Tech Faculty & Student Panel Discussion

Thanks to Digital Media Services for the video below and the University Libraries’ Event Capture Service for video production.

Virginia Tech Open Educational Resource (OER) authors, adapters, and authors and several students discussed the use, benefits, challenges, and opportunities related to using or adapting openly licensed course materials for couse use. Panelists included Jane Roberson-Evia (Statistics), Mary Lipscombe (Biological Sciences), Stephen Skripak (Pamplin), and Anastasia Cortez (Pamplin). Publishing expert Peter Potter (University Libraries), and students Mayra Artiles (Doctoral student, Engineering Education), and Jonathan de Pena (Senior, Finance) also joined the panel, moderated by Anita Walz (University Libraries).

Virginia Tech’s Student Government Association (SGA) designed the Open Education Week exhibit to educate and to solicit visitor input. The interactive exhibit features a range of required student learning materials including textbooks, homework access codes, software, and clickers, visual representations of data related to course material costs and student responses, information about open education options, a new Creative Commons brochure, CC stickers, and several interactive features. Students also have the opportunity to write a personalized message on an SGA-designed postcard to their professor, department head, or whomever they want to contact.

A selection of resources used in the exhibit are linked here:

Florida Virtual Campus (October 7, 2016) 2016 Student Textbook and Course Materials Survey. Available here.

National Association of College Stores (2011) “Where the New Textbook Dollar Goes” Used with Permission of NACS. (No updated data available). Available here.

Senack, Ethan. (January 2014) Fixing the Broken Textbook Market: How students respond to high textbook costs and demand alternatives. U.S. PIRG Education Fund & the Student PIRGs: Washington, DC. Available here.

Senack, E., Donoghue, R. (2016)Covering the cost: Why we can no longer afford to ignore high textbook prices. Student PIRGS: Washington, DC. Available here.

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, as quoted by Popken, B. in “College Textbook Prices Have Risen 1,041 Percent Since 1977“ NBC News (August 6, 2015). Available here.

OEW word cloud

© Anna Pope, CC BY 4.0

OEW word cloud

© Anna Pope, CC BY 4.0

SGA also hosted a Multimedia Event. This student led engagement event featured multiple interactive stations where students could discuss, answer questions, take pictures, and write postcards. Two wordcloud prompts in particular were telling: “Where would your money go if you didn’t have to buy textbooks” — with the top two answers by far reflecting daily living expenses — “food” and “rent.”

Students were also asked to reflect on how they avoid buying full price textbooks. Responses included “Rent [textbooks],” “go without,” “hope for the best,” “borrow them from a friend,” and “buy used.”

OEW whiteboard

© Anna Pope, CC BY 4.0

___________________

The Open Education Week at Virginia Tech planning committee for 2017 included: Anita Walz (Chair), Kayla McNabb, Quinn Warnick, Anna Pope, Anne Brown, Kimberly Bassler, and Craig Arthur.

Exhibit curators: Virginia Tech Student Government Association: Anna Pope, Kenneth Corbett, Spencer Jones, Holly Hunter, and Sydney Thorpe with the University Libraries’: Scott Fralin and Anita Walz

Special thanks for event support: Carrie Cross, Trevor Finney, and Kayla McNabb

Open Education Week 2015 at Virginia Tech

The University Libraries is planning its first observance of Open Education Week (February 23-27) at Virginia Tech! Open Education Week is intended to raise awareness of open educational resources (OER), which include a wide range of teaching, learning, and research resources such as textbooks, videos, software, and course materials that are free to be used and re-purposed. All are welcome to attend and find out how adopting, adapting, and authoring openly licensed resources can advance learning and reduce costs for students. We’re especially pleased to have Kristi Jensen, Program Development Lead for the eLearning Support Initiative (University of Minnesota Libraries) and David Ernst, Chief Information Officer (University of Minnesota College of Education and Human Development) from the University of Minnesota Open Textbook Library who will host the workshops on Thursday and Friday.

  • Interested in learning more about the conceptual and practical aspects of open licensing? Join us on Tuesday, Feb 24 11am-12:30pm in Newman Library’s 1st Floor Multipurpose Room for the interactive presentation “Get Creative (and Stay Legal).”
  • Wondering what students have to say about affordability of learning resources and how this affects them? Come to the Student Government Association-hosted panel discussion on Wednesday, Feb 25th 12:30-1:45pm (Newman Library’s 1st Floor Multipurpose Room).
  • Want to meet faculty who have authored or are implementing openly licensed resources/open textbooks in their courses? Join us for an Open House at 3:30pm Wednesday, Feb 25th and stay for the panel discussion from 4-5:30pm (Newman Library’s 1st Floor Multipurpose Room). Panelists include Peter Doolittle, Mohammed Seyam, Heath Hart, and Greg Hartman (VMI).
  • Do you advise or assist faculty regarding learning materials or instructional design? Do you work or are studying instructional design? Join us for an interesting conversation about open educational resources (OER) and instructional design on Thursday, February 26th 11am-12:15pm (with Kristi Jensen and David Ernst, Newman Library’s 1st floor Multipurpose Room).
  • Do you work in an area academic library and want to be better equipped to talk with faculty about exploring open educational resources? Register for the Open Educational Resources for Librarians workshop on Thursday, February 26th 1-2:30pm (with Kristi Jensen and David Ernst, Newman Library Boardroom, 6th floor).
  • Are you a faculty member responsible for reviewing or selecting textbooks or other learning materials? Are you looking for other options or concerned about the costs for students? Join us for the Open Textbook Adoption workshop Friday, February 27th 9-11am. A limited number of $200 stipends are available for teaching faculty who apply, attend the workshop, and write a review of an open textbook (with Kristi Jensen and David Ernst, Newman Library’s 1st Floor Multipurpose Room).

Open Education Week at VT

Why are we hosting Open Education Week?

The cost of textbooks and learning resources is a burden for students:

Faculty are saving their students money by adopting OER:

And OER gives faculty opportunities for innovative teaching and learning:

  • Faculty may create a new resource or customize an openly licensed resource to make it best fit their learning objectives.
  • Openly licensed content may be copied, updated, reformatted, customized, and redistributed free of charge. This gives a tremendous opportunity to faculty (and students) who wish to integrate content into new and different learning resources (for example, changing the formatting of a book to enhance student interaction with the text, or pulling content into different platforms, or customizing problem sets, assessments, and links to other resources).

See our Open Education Week guide for more information on events as well as OER in general. Please contact Anita Walz at arwalz@vt.edu or 540-231-2204 with any questions. Hope to see you at one or more Open Education Week events! #openedweek #openeducationwk