Let’s Open Up in Education!

Mark Milliron Catalytic Conversations Civitas Learning Space

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OER Commons Open education is on the move. Check out the Cape Town Open Education Declaration to explore an example of the ideas behind this movement. Putting quality resources at the fingertips of educators around the world is the ultimate goal—opening up accessible learning opportunities to millions. Serving as board chair for the Institute for the Study of Knowledge Management in Education (ISKME)—an organization founded and inspirationally led by Dr. Lisa Petrides—I’ve had the pleasure of watching one powerful response to this open education movement. ISKME’s response is showcased in the Open Education Resource Commons (OER Commons) site. We had our spring board meeting this week, and once again I was taken aback by the breadth and depth of this initiative—not to mention it’s skilled use of Web 2.0 strategies (e.g., social networking) to connect educators and content in compelling ways. And while the resources already available are stunning, it’s the long-term potential of this initiative that has me beaming. If you’re an innovative educator, it will be worth your time to visit OER Commons and check out the thousands of quality, open, and innovative learning objects/resources available across K-12, community college, and university settings. If you want to learn more about the background of the initiative, how to best leverage the content, and how you can contribute, check out this presentation put together by Mark Basnage that describes one of the OER Commons international pilot projects. I hope you decide to explore and leverage the resources on OER Commons. More important, however, the folks at ISKME hope you’ll be willing to add your voice and talent to this emerging open education community. There’s so much we can do together in education if we’re willing to open up!