A recent research study undertaken by the Academic IT Group in conjunction with the Department of Education was presented at 2015 European Conference on e-Learning at the University of Hertfordshire in October. The study, entitled ‘Openness in Teaching and Learning’, explored the relationship between open educational practice and the academic culture of Oxford, in order to illuminate the factors that might be conducive to greater uptake of open educational resources (OER) in teaching and learning in the University.
Interviews which we carried out with 14 Oxford academics in the light of an extensive survey of the literature on open educational practice suggested overlaps between open pedagogic models and the University’s tutorial model and view of the student as an adult participant in their learning. We therefore questioned the claim that the use of OER necessarily entails radical changes in teachers’ pedagogic approach. Nevertheless, we identified a number of ways in which OER and open source tools might inform research-led teaching at Oxford and help foster in students the skills to become ‘citizens of tomorrow’ in an increasingly open world.