The recent Bayview Analytics and WCET report on OER suggests that while faculty and institutions have shown increasing awareness and acceptance of OER, many remain unfamiliar with what they are, or how to utilize them. When faculty understand and feel confident navigating the licensing structures of OER creation and revision, opportunities then emerge to engage students in the content co-creation process. This pedagogy, sometimes referred to as OER-enabled pedagogy or Open Pedagogy, centers the students as the authority of knowledge creation that will be used by others to teach and learn from, and organically creates opportunities to encourage the diversification of the curriculum, as commercial textbooks are far less likely to be inclusive and representative of scholars of color and other underrepresented voices.
As editors and/or creators of OER, students have the opportunity to make the existing content more culturally responsive so that they see themselves and their communities reflected in the examples and case studies used to convey topics. Herbert Kohl’s 1991 Essay titled “I Won’t Learn From You,” says that “To agree to learn from a stranger who does not respect your integrity causes a major loss of self. The only alternative is to not-learn and reject the stranger’s world.” In the case of OER, the stranger’s world is the eurocentric textbook that rarely encapsulates or reflects the lived experiences of Black and Brown students and other historically underserved and marginalized populations in the United States. Open Pedagogy creates new opportunities to invite our students into the scholarly conversation to rectify the inequities historically woven into the fabric of postsecondary learning materials.
Our community of practice is bringing together regional faculty members to refresh their fundamental knowledge of OER and work towards a deeper understanding of utilizing open educational practices to increase student engagement, success, and ownership of the cultural content present in their learning materials.
View our community of practice syllabus* to learn more and follow along.
*Subject to change weekly!