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Monday, 18 February 2013

updated: what is open Northampton?


The aim is for Northampton to feature prominently on the global OER map within two years lead by Professor+Alejandro Armellini with support from Professor Megan Quentin-Baxter.

More details of the bid can be found at: http://researchsupporthub.northampton.ac.uk/2012/12/10/funding-success-professor-alejandro-armellini/#more-1947



"Proposal / Executive Summary
The aim is for [The University of] Northampton to feature prominently on the global OER-OEP map within the next 24 months.
This presence will be achieved by:
Stakeholder engagement with OER and OEP across the institution -enabled by top-down and bottom-up approaches, dissemination of evidence and good practice and exemplar OER-enhanced courses.
Practice. (a) Promotion and facilitation of course design and development through the use of open resources, adapted or repurposed as appropriate. (b) Materials produced by Northampton academics to undergo a peer-review, copyright and quality assurance process, then licensed under an appropriate CC licence and released into suitable repositories (both institutional and external ones). By default, all materials will be open.
Support and guidance will be provided to students and staff to generate a culture shift towards openness and open practices, to include pedagogical, technical, legal (eg copyright and IPR) and good practice elements, in conjunction with colleagues in schools and, in particular, Library and Learning Services.
External funding to enable the university to conduct and disseminate the results of research and development initiatives into OER and OEP, matched by institutional funding for smaller projects.
Marketing and positioning. The university will capitalise on its growing presence on the global OER-OEP map for marketing and positioning purposes via various channels.
Evidence to enhance the student and staff experience. In parallel with all initiatives and projects, ongoing research and evaluation of the impact of OER and OEP on the student and staff experience will inform subsequent actions." University of Northampton (2012a)

"Openness for enhancement – Northampton’s innovative approach to enhancing learners’ experiences manifests itself in many ways, including its strategic focus on the quality of learning and teaching, institutional capacity building in learning design, research to practice, social enterprise, employability, and the use of evidence to shift relevant innovations to the mainstream. However, the absence of a strategic approach to openness has reduced the visibility of Northampton’s excellent work and limited its benefits to the community.
Staff engagement with OER and OEP – OER and OEP have been areas of limited prominence at Northampton so far. The University was the lead partner in TIGER, an OER Phase II project funded by JISC and the HE Academy (http://www.heacademy.ac.uk/projects/detail/oer/OER_REL_Northampton), which focused on the School of Health. Lessons from the TIGER project have been learned, but the need to engage Northampton staff at all levels with the openness agenda remains – both as users and producers of open content. Colleagues at the University’s associate FE colleges need additional engagement with OER or OEP as well.
Awareness of good practice and the legal aspects of using third party content - The prevailing culture at Northampton is one where academics and course teams keep all or most of their content locked down behind the virtual learning environment (VLE). It is often difficult for academics to see each other’s materials. A review of materials currently available on Northampton’s VLE reveals a significant need for increased awareness of good practice in the use of third party material, including copyright, licensing and IPR."



What are OERs

OERS are "digitised materials offered freely and openly for educators, students and self-learners to use and reuse for teaching, learning and research" Hylén (2007) p. 30
teaching, learning and research materials in any medium, digital or otherwise, that reside in the public domain or have been released under an open license that permits no-cost access, use, adaptation and redistribution by others with no or limited restrictions. Open licensing is built within the existing framework of intellectual property rights as defined by relevant international conventions and respects the authorship of the work” UNESCO (2012) 
Examples of OER
Open Learn from the Open University. A copy of the final report (McAndrew et al, 2009) for the project can be found at http://oro.open.ac.uk/17513/2/Research_forWeb.pdf. Interestingly for the School of Science and Technology one of the authors Tina Wilson is one of the school's recent visting research fellows. 

The University's own, growing, open journal Enhancing the Learner Experience in Higher Education (ELEHE) which seeks to "seeks to galvanise interest in the field of HE learning, and act as a catalyst and stimulus for further research and dissemination." and has authors and editorial review board drawn from both the UK and Internationally.





More details of Open Northampton can be found at:
Towards a more open Northampton
Open Northampton gaining Momentum
Open Northampton gathers pace
Enhancing the Learner Experience in Higher Education (ELEHE)





References