From Bilan Jama (CC USA) | Volume 129 | May 14th, 2021
THE OER DIGEST
Your bi-weekly newsletter for open education updates, opportunities, and reminders
UNESCO RECOMMENDATION: This week, the Intergovernmental Special Committee Meeting of UNESCO approved the draft text of a Recommendation on Open Science. The Recommendation outlines common definition, shared values, principles and standards for Open Science at the international level and proposes a set of actions conducive to a fair and equitable operationalization of Open Science at individual, institutional, national, regional and international levels. The Recommendation explicitly recognizes OER within the definition of Open Scientific Knowledge, building on the UNESCO Recommendation on Open Educational Resources adopted in 2019.
READ THE FINE PRINT: SPARC has released a new resource about the legal agreements behind automatic textbook billing programs. Their Automatic Textbook Billing Contract Library offers a structured breakdown of more than 70 contracts with major vendors obtained through public records requests. The library includes contracts previously published by U.S. PIRG, whose 2020 report highlights the differences between OER and “inclusive access” style programs.
ACHIEVING THE DREAM: Achieving the Dream (ATD) has selected eight colleges to participate in the next phase of its research on OER. The goal of ATD’s Teaching and Learning with OER study is to understand whether and how faculty’s use of OER leads to the adoption of new pedagogical strategies in the classroom. ATD has partnered with SRI Education to conduct the research, which will include interviews and focus groups with students, faculty, and administrators, as well as observations of OER classrooms during the 2021 spring and summer academic terms. Researchers will be looking for evidence of innovative teaching practices, such as open pedagogy and culturally responsive teaching practices (CRT), in classes using openly licensed course materials. ATD and SRI will release a final report in early 2022. ATD will develop a set of tools and resources based on the study outcomes to help faculty effectively integrate new teaching practices with their openly licensed materials.
Conferences, jobs, and other OER-related opportunities
REGISTER NOW: Join the National Science Education Leadership Association for “Have your cake and eat it too – Utilizing Open Educational Resources to Transform Science Learning”, a webinar on May 19th at 2 pm CDT. Learn more here.
REGISTER NOW: Join Michelson 20MM on May 26th at 10 am PST to learn about their upcoming Spark Grants Open Educational Resources funding cycle. This Open Educational Resources Spark Grants funding cycle will open June 2nd and close June 23rd. Through this cycle, Michelson 20MM seeks to fund projects in California that support systems-level strategies with the potential to create positive impact at scale and inform public policy. You can register for the event here.
APPLY NOW: Applications are open for the SPARC Open Education Leadership Program 2021-22 cohort. The year-long program is available for open education professionals in the US and Canada. Apply by May 28.
JOB OPPORTUNITY: Michelson 20MM Foundation is looking for an Open Education Resources (OER) Program Manager. The manager will be responsible for managing and supporting the foundation’s long term commitment to OER. The role will require strong research capabilities, strategy refinement, and cross-sector coordination with partners.This full-time position is fully remote. Learn more and apply here.
JOB OPPORTUNITY: Texas Tech University is looking for a new Open Educational Resources Librarian. The position is full-time and review of applications begins soon. Learn more and apply here.
STORIES FROM THE FIELD
Quick snapshots of those making change on the ground level, and those impacted
FROM MASSACHUSETTS: 27 UMass Lowell faculty members were recently honored at the university’s first “OERscars” ceremony. Organized by UMass Lowell’s MASSPIRG Student’s chapter and Student Government Association, the virtual OERscars event recognized UML faculty who use free or low-cost digital textbooks and OER in their courses. UMass Lowell has taken a series of steps in recent years to encourage faculty to use e-books to help students save money and keep them in school. “The faculty honored here today have been leaders in advocating for students and keeping this issue in the foreground in their departments and colleges,” said Julie Nash, the Vice Provost for Academic Affairs. “It says a lot about our students that they organized this event so they could say thank you.” Read More>>
FROM NEW YORK: Open@RIT, the Rochester Institute of Technology open programs office, has established a fellowship program to support faculty and staff with their work in the open community. Twenty-one projects have been selected from across the university for open work in everything from game development to ASL linguistics. Chris Kurz, professor in the Master of Science in Secondary Education program at NTID, was among seven people with a project in the first cohort. Kurz is leading a project, aimed at increasing global literacy for deaf children. The platform includes a repository of multilingual stories for deaf and hearing children. “They shared with us their research and recommendations for the platform to make it more interactive and engaging for our end users,” said Kurz. “They are professional with their work and they welcome our feedback. My team is looking forward to continuing this collaboration with the program to make stories accessible to children worldwide.” Read More>>
HOT OFF THE PRESS
Each edition, we highlight an interesting, new, openly-licensed resource
Open Oregon Educational Resources has released Interpretation of Metal Fab Drawings by Cameren Moran. The book introduces the principles of interpretation and application of industrial fabrication drawings.
Great reads to repost or share and interesting discussions to consider
Great to Share >>
How MIT OpenCourseWare Became an Educational Resource to Millions Around the World | The MIT Campaign for a Better World
The Impact of OER at the University | The Tech Advocate
Interesting to Consider >>
The OER Digest is a public newsletter distributed to a broad group of stakeholders across the higher education community. Subscribe here.