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I have been interviewed about OER twice recently for TV programmes. The first time was in Madrid at a meeting of the OER- HE project (see Is OER at the heart of EuROpe?). The second time was in Hanoi at the OCW Consortium Global meeting. Both interviews were in English but I wonder whether they have ended up being sub titled or dubbed. Whatever, both instances indicate significant interest in OER by the media in those countries (well more significant than most new educational topics) and that the OU is acknowledged as a leader in the field.

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Apart from playing simple word games with my title there is definitely a number of European HEIs that are getting into the OER field. Interestingly most started out just doing their own thing but it was not long before they began to join together and share their efforts with others. A good example of this has been the pivotal work of the European association of Distance Teaching Universities (EADTU) which I have been fortunate to be part of. Through 2 substantive grants they have first brought together its own members in the MORIL project. Through MORIL they also have shared their work with more traditional campus based universities such that their second project, OER-HE, formally includes a conventional university.

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The Commonwealth of Learning (COL) asked me to answer a few questions to feed into a short discussion paper for their upcoming OER workshops in Cape Town and Windhoek on 26 April and 3 May respectively (See http://www.col.org/progServ/programmes/livelihoods/Pages/eLearning.aspx#workshops ).

 They are particularly interested in two key issues related to OER in Higher Education, namely quality assurance and sustainability.

So here are the questions and the answers I gave them.

 

I have just been to OER10 and it was clear from most of the papers about how everyone is trying to think hard about how OER influence practices. I wrote about this for Terra Incognita two years ago but as that site is now seemingly in hibernation and just in case you missed it here I go again with an updated version.

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I have recently returned from a sojourn to South Africa. My main reason for going was to attend the latest Board meeting of the OpenCourseWare Consortium. However the Consortium also likes to promote local meetings alongside the Board meetings at which Board members can participate. Thus we had a half day workshop at the University of the Western Cape (a longstanding member) involving staff from other South African Universities followed by the official launch of the OER website for the University of Cape Town (and who had just joined the Consortium the previous week). I was a panel member answering questions at the former and collecting the obligatory T-shirt and mug at the latter after celebrating the cutting of the official ribbon (not everything should be done virtually).

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