From Horizon Project
Time-to-Adoption: Four to Five Years
 Open Education Resources
Open education resources are freely available educational materials, usually packaged as entire courses, that can be used for self-study or by faculty who want to integrate them into their courses. Schools like MIT, Stanford, Carnegie Mellon, UC Berkeley, and many others have been offering open-access courses online for some time. Computer science classes have incorporated open education resources for years—not only for course materials, but also for group software projects that give students the opportunity to work on real products. We are now starting to see services that are built around the educational materials themselves—services for review and recommendation, for creating and uploading, for tracking progress, and for communicating with other learners and teachers.
We are also seeing groups of institutions working together to provide access to open education courses, like the Open Education Consortium (http://www.ocwconsortium.org). The OEC, now two years old, provides a portal to high-quality content from over 100 institutions, all organized into complete courses and all available online. Of course, not all open education resources must be complete courses. Services like PocketKnowledge (http://pocketknowledge.tc.columbia.edu/home.php/about) from Columbia Teachers College and Scribd (http://www.scribd.com) invite contributions on a smaller scale from the TC community or from the world in general, respectively.
Related to this is the concept of open courseware and open source software: OKI, Dspace, Pachyderm, Fedora, and Edna are just a few projects working in this model. Increasing support for academic developers is making it possible for educational open source software to be created; the Fluid Project (http://fluidproject.org/), for instance, aims to collect a library of user interface elements that can be incorporated into educational open source software.
 Relevance for Teaching, Learning & Creative Expression
- Self-study and lifelong learning becomes much more accessible.
- Open education ties into the idea of new scholarship—creating a peer-reviewed course could count toward tenure qualifications.
- OER Recommender links to open education resources related to web pages as you browse them: http://www.oerrecommender.org
- Rice University’s Connexions lets faculty create and share educational resources: http://cnx.rice.edu
- Carnegie Mellon’s Open Learning Initiative offers free online college-level courses in ten different disciplines; the system tracks student progress and can be used by faculty to create their own courses, or for self-study: http://www.cmu.edu/oli/
 For Further Reading
About OER Commons (Website)
OER Commons is a comprehensive learning network of free course materials (K-12 and college). http://www.oercommons.org/about
Video, Education, and Open Content: Notes Toward a New Research and Action Agenda
(Peter B. Kaufman, First Monday, March 16, 2007)
This paper discusses the intersection of moving images, education, and open content, and suggests areas for research. http://www.firstmonday.org/issues/issue12_4/kaufman/index.html
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