What’s been happening at the Hub in July? It’s time for our monthly news round-up!
Open Textbook Bonanza
July kicked off with the release of a range of our research on open textbooks during the aptly named Open Textbook Research week. With contributors from all of our fantastic open textbook collaborators, this was a great chance to see what work we’ve been doing together. Beck (OERRH researcher) and Megan Beckett (Siyavula) co-authored a series of blog posts on the survey findings in South Africa, Clint Lalonde of BCcampus told us more about the Open Textbook Project Geography sprint in an exclusive post and we also released the revised OpenStax College educator survey findings, preliminary student survey findings and three educator interviews. Phew! With 11 blog posts in total there’s a wealth of research to explore.
If you missed out, don’t worry as you can find all of the posts available here.
Later in the month, we also released the full audio of last year’s OpenEd13 interview with co-author of OpenStax College’s Introductory Statistics, Barbara Illowsky. This is an incredibly rich interview with Barbara telling us about the journey of Collaborative Statistics, which she co-authored with Susan Dean, the students at De Anza College in California, why their open textbook is licensed CC-BY, her work with Cable Green to “influence OER policy”, student savings and how open has improved quality. Catch up on Part One and Part Two … perfect summertime listening!
Finally, toward the end of the month, OpenStax College released a fabulous infographic showing a selection of the educator survey findings which were released during Open Textbook Research week. You will be able to download a copy from our Infographics page shortly. In the meantime, check out all the latest from OpenStax and the infographic here! Many thanks to Dani Nicholson of OpenStax for making the infographic a reality and look out for the student survey findings in OpenStax’s August newsletter.
Out and About: “Open Minds to Open Action”
Half way through July Beck, Rob and Martin headed to Berlin to participate in this year’s Open Knowledge Festival (#OKFest14). The festival took place in the amazing Kulturbrauerei which provided a great space to host a vast array of sessions on openness in all different kinds of contexts, including education. Did you manage to catch our session on Wednesday at unFestival?! For the bigger picture check out our Storify and the official OKFest day-by-day reviews!
School of Open Open Research Course Update
We’ve been busy behind the scenes preparing our Open Research course for it’s launch next month. After undergoing a successful community review process, we are currently working on getting the course onto the P2PU platform and ready for the course sign-up period which begins on 25 August 2014. Thanks to Jane Park of Creative Commons for all her help and support in getting us shipshape for launch!
The course itself begins on Monday 15 September. Look out for more on the course itself over the coming weeks prior to, and during, the three week sign-up period. If you have any questions the team will be on hand to chat prior to the course on Thursday 11 September 2014 between 15.00-16.00 BST. We hope you’ll be able to join us for our first iteration of what we hope will be an exciting exploration of open research!
Out and About: Engagement
Martha Lane Fox, who will be the new Open University (UK) Chancellor from September (see the OU press release), came to visit us on 3 July 2014. She spent time in the Institute of Educational Technology (where our project is based) and we were lucky enough to be able to tell her more about the work we do and demonstrate our Impact Map during her tour.
The following week Beck headed down to London to talk to media investors at NOMURA about OER and efficacy.
Impact Map, Data Analysis and Progress Updates
Rob spent part of July scoping the next stage of development of our Impact Map. New evidence will also be appearing in the map over the coming weeks as we update the map with some of our newly released research findings and other data. We would love to hear from you if you’ve data that you’d like to contribute, or have feedback. You also might have noticed that Rob has improved the user guidance. Please let us know your thoughts!
We’ll also have lots more data to share with you over the coming months. Bea has conducted a preliminary analysis of our “monster dataset” which comprises of over 6000 respondents drawn from 11 separate surveys we’ve carried out with our collaborators on use and attitudes toward OER. More from Bea shortly!
Finally, earlier in the month, the OER Research Hub team met to discuss project progress and next steps in Buckingham. We had a productive Awayday and even managed to hold a mini award ceremony during dinner! Thanks to Natalie for all her hard work in making the Awaydays such a useful time.
There’s lots in store for August as our Open Research course opens for sign-up, Rob heads back to Berlin for OpenSym 2014 and participates in Wikimania 2014, and we begin our final reporting period… Look out for our regular blog updates as the month progresses!