OER, MOOCs and the promise of broadening access to education

Thursday 20th February 2014. 17:00-18.30
Venue: Oxford Internet Institute, University of Oxford, 1 St Giles, Oxford, OX1 3JS. UK.

Please email your name and affiliation to events@oii.ox.ac.uk if you are planning to attend.

A live stream will be available at http://breakingboundariesoxford.org/

This seminar will focus on the use of ICTs for increasing access to educational opportunities for people who have been traditionally excluded from them, paying particular attention to the movement articulated around the so-called Open Educational Resources (OER) and Massive Online Open Courses (MOOCs).

New open practices: the implications of OER and MOOCs for traditional educational institution
Speaker: Professor Grainne Conole. Director of the Institute of Learning Innovation at the University of Leicester

At the heart of the Open Educational Resource (OER) movement is the vision that education is a fundamental human right and that educational resources should therefore be freely available. Promoted by organisations such as UNESCO and the Hewlett Foundation, there are now hundreds of OER repositories worldwide. In recent years we have seen the emergence of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOC), which can be considered to be a structured mechanism for delivering OER, over a particular time period and through a structured learning pathway. The talk will highlight the key developments in OER and MOOC research. It will present a framework for benchmarking OER initiatives and developing a vision and roadmap for their future development, along with a new classification scheme for MOOCs.
Conceptualising interaction in MOOCs

Speaker: Dr Rebecca Eynon. Senior Reserch Fellow at the OII and Lecturer in the Department of Education at the University of Oxford
While there has been a lot of attention about the potential for MOOCs to transform higher education, far less empirical research has been conducted that explores the experiences and behaviours of learners in these online settings. A particular strength of MOOCs is the potential for thousands of learners to come together to learn.  Understanding who interacts, how they interact, and why is an important part of understanding how learning may occur. This presentation aims to highlight the different ways in which people communicate and interact with one another in MOOCs, and how these interactions are related to learner characteristics, experiences and outcomes through the in-depth mixed method analysis of one case study MOOC. The findings discussed are those emerging from an ongoing study funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates foundation. See http://www.oii.ox.ac.uk/research/projects/?id=121 for more details.

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