How open minded could we be

I have a confession to do! For me it´s no longer important to be open for everything you do on the Internet. I started with FaceBook i 2007 and it was fantastic to meet and see all friends from the old days (but it takes some years for some people to discovery it:). But on Facebook I still miss some friends, they haven´t become comfortable or they are not interested at all, to be a part of the Internet.

One thing that happend about three years ago when our University decided to have one  LMS (moodle)supported by the it-department. Why we choose Moodle was because it has an ”open source” and their should be low cost for this LMS. It is restricted that any one that will access to our LMS must have an account and also sign the written agreement as follows it. But it also have a back, From the beginning when moodle was released it was open in that meaning that you could search in google for our courses, programme, material etc.  It was a student that discovered that she could search and get information about what she was writing in a forum. When this was exposed by the system owner then it was decided to close all search for our LMS on the Internet. Some of our teacher was already in the ”open education area” and divided all their material e.g. recorded lessons to publish on the Internet. Suddenly I found my self in a situation where my ideas about open education have to be reconsidered. I think it´s a poor system that will limit your restriction, no one can search our courses in Google anymore and the teacher can´t in an easy way share their material and lesson like they did before. The teacher just fetch a deep sigh.

Interesting reading is also how Terry Anderson (Weller, M., & Anderson, T. 2013) describe how Athabasca University in Canada use and care about how they want to be a part of an open access publishing. They see it in two aspects:

  1. Related to the use of open educational resources, how this could be a part of the courseware.
  2. The scholarly publication should be open accessible for all.

There is a discontent that private companies will earn money when authors have to publish scholarly works in scientific magazines. It costs a lot of money for educational institutions to get this material and the company in principle get everything for free from the author, reviewers and editors. I think the scholarly works should be free for all our students and researchers. Even if we want to share our works it´s always a company that figure out how to earn money on our scholarly works.

Weller, M., & Anderson, T. (2013). Digital resilience in higher education. European Journal of Open, Distance and E-Learning, 16(1), 53.


Picture: Cows, Öland-Sweden 2016, author: Pia Palm
My picture is also accessible on Wikimedia Commons with CC BY-SA 4.0

CC BY-SA 4.0File:Kossor på Öland, kows.jpg



How open minded could we be

6 reaktioner på ”How open minded could we be

  1. It is interesting to see the impact an LMS has on openness and sharing. On one hand teachers in the same institution can share resources but I think it does cut you off from the wider world of OER. Also the fact that at semester end the course is ”closed down” and resources can be lost.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I think it is an interesting case you are describing. As teachers we are struggling with how openness can be restricted, which is of course a little contradictory in itself. Given that, on the one hand, students should have the possibility to explore freely (learning) in a course without perhaps having their ideas, mistakes and opinions available on the web forever, while on the other hand teachers may want to embrace openness in general…. we do have to sort out the best structure don’t we?

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thank you for this post! I share your experience from other universities…. it seems that in many places IT-departments and faculty have a tendency to protect and close all educational material in, wanting somehow not to loose control… Sad to see sometimes that a lot of energy is put into closing in and controlling, instead of promoting an open creative dialogue in the open…
    Maybe you touch an important point about : that of course we should make sure that students personal information should not be shared openly in a way the student is not comfortable with, but a lot of our educational resources would probably be better off out in the open.
    Maybe if we can teach our students about openness and the benefits of sharing they would be much more motivated to contributing openly in open courses.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Thank you for your thoughts and comments. Some of you describes, that we should give our students the opportunity to share openess. We are in a process and we might have reach half ways. At least we have reach a point where we can say that we have awarenes about the necessity of openess.


  5. I think the question of openness, academic property etc is so important, and you Pia capture a lot of the positives and also some of the possible negatives in your blog post. The question about whether or not scholarly publications should be open accessible for all is very close to me, and for me it appears such a backward process to spend time, money and other resources to produce excellent scientific work and then restrict who has the possibility to access this information.

    Liked by 1 person


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