While we OSTRICHes at Leicester have been focusing on the upcoming JISC reporting requirements, our cascade partners at Derby and Bath have been roaring ahead with developments in their institutions.
The Derby OER team has already gathered more than the committed 100 credits’ worth of materials to be converted into OERs, and they’re working their way through copyright clearance and packaging the materials for early release. Updates on their latest activities can be found at http://ostrichatderby.wordpress.com/.
Simon Kear (Beyond Distance Media Zookeeper) and I will be visiting Derby on Tuesday to get a taste of the OERs in progress, to see what support we can offer, and of course, to gather the necessary information for the Interim Project Report to JISC.
Bath, meanwhile, has been putting their efforts into creating a Drupal-based repository for both their own and Derby’s OERs, which has involved dealing with a number of questions about sustainability, considering that both institutions will want to continue adding resources after the completion of the OTTER project. Work with academics has been ongoing alongside this to ensure that the repository will be well-populated once it’s up and running. For updated information on Bath’s recent activities, see http://blogs.bath.ac.uk/oer/.
Members from all three institutions are also working on a presentation for OER11, in which we will discuss the workflow models being developed through the OSTRICH project and compare them with OER development workflow models from elsewhere, including the OSTRICH project’s predecessor, OTTER.
As we head towards the halfway mark in this project, I’m excited to see that the culture of openness that has slowly begun to take root at Leicester University is also very much in evidence in our partner institutions. It seems that the vision of OERs as a mainstream aspect of learning design in UK Higher Education might well be attainable – little by little.
Gabi Witthaus, 4 Feb 2011