Getting Started with Open Educational Resources

Teacher Editorial  |  By Lisa Hailes

For Beginners by a Beginner

Photo Credit: Ben White (2016)
Photo Credit: Ben White (2016)

I am a fairly seasoned educator; I have completed graduate courses in technology and am considered a go-to person for technology integration in our school. Yet the pace at which new technologies emerge means that there are many areas where I am definitely still a beginner.  Open Educational Resources (OER) has been one of those areas.  Until recently I would hear terms in conversations such as Open Universities, MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses), Open Education, Open Resources, licencing, etc. and be able to follow what was being talked about but was very fuzzy in my actual understanding of what it all meant. Not long before that, my thoughts were that OER was something awesome that was happening in higher education but didn’t really know that it would become relevant in K-12 education.  It is relevant. OER are here, they are the future and they matter.

Why Are Teachers Hesitant about OER?

I think that when teachers first start to think about OER, they are often intrigued but overwhelmed.  Teachers are working so hard to be able to balance the many demands of the classroom.  With a range of learners in the classroom, teachers already spend so much time creating resources and personalizing them to meet each learner where they are at and customize the delivery of their content to create individual learning experiences that are content rich yet engaging.

Continue reading “Getting Started with Open Educational Resources”

OER and Canadian Copyright: Essential Facts

Guest Editorial | By Rory McGreal (Professor)

OER and Canadian copyright: Essential Facts

As the UNESCO/Commonwealth of Learning Chairholder in Open Educational Resources,  I have been involved with computerOpen Educational Resources for many years and within an international context. For K-12 educators, understanding copyright can be a bit intimidating but once you know some essential facts, OER becomes more inviting.

So – to help with this endeavour here are some essential  facts on copyright and educational publishing in Canada:

Continue reading “OER and Canadian Copyright: Essential Facts”