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UNESCO/COL Chair Rory McGreal

OER Community

UNESCO/COL Chair in the OER Community

The UNESCO/COL Chair in OER aims to support international discussions in a community and collaborative action in an international network.

The action of the Chair builds upon the UNESCO OER community originally launched in 2005 by the UNESCO International Institute for Educational Planning (IIEP) with generous support from the Hewlett Foundation. Documents from the discussions can be found on the  IIEP Website. The objective was to promote awareness of the growing OER movement and to build capacity to create, use and re-use resources.

Over the years Community members have come together to interact on key issues in online seminar-like discussions:

  • Identifying an OER research agenda;
  • Designing a DIY development resource;
  • Considering Free and Open Source Software for OER; and
  • Reflecting on access to OER.

But the Community also took action:

  • Identifying the priorities for the OER movement – the Way forward – and translating the report;
  • Creating OER Stories to share information about specific OER initiatives; and
  • Contributing to the finalization of the UNESCO OER Toolkit, an outcome of the DIY development resource conversation.

The UNESCO/COL Chair Community

The AU UNESCO/COL Chair in OER, with the support of the Hewlett Foundation and others, is working with institutional partners and international organizations in support of the worldwide OER community. 

The first discussion supported by AU prior to awarding of the Chair took place in  2010. Mary Lou Forward and her colleagues in the OpenCourseWare Consortium (OCWC) shared and discussed issues raised during the meeting OCWC Global 2010 held in Vietnam. Her report captures the gist of the discussion.

The focus of the AU OER Chair is to work with the community to consider how to map the international OER landscape. The growth of the movement has meant that it is more and more difficult to have a comprehensive overview of the many initiatives worldwide. And for OER to become part of the mainstream of education, a clear understanding of what OER is, and how it is serving educators and learners is important for all stakeholders.

Community members are invited to turn their collective attention to how such a mapping of OER initiatives can be planned, designed, undertaken and sustained – as a collaborative exercise. And we will be building this site further to continue to document OER community interaction and development for all to share.

Please join us

Join the community of the UNESCO/COL Chair in OER and take part in the ongoing conversation. Contribute to creating an international OER map and help build a worldwide OER Network. Send an email to Susan D’Antoni at susandantoni@gmail.com