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UNESCO/COL Chair Rory McGreal

UNESCO Chairs meeting New York

Full report: Click here

The participants at this meeting from 12 countries on five continents made the following points:

§  ensuring the openness of the initiative to all who are willing to participate

§  still need awareness raising – term OER not well known

§  importance of language

§  importance of concept of inclusion

§  need to know user needs

§  need a framework to share metadata

§  how to find OER and use effectively

§  mapping OER initiatives globally to find partners

§  mapping pathways for learners

§  Ph. D. school

§  OER knowledge cloud

§  The OER University concept for assessment and accreditation

§  all the ideas need research champions

§  need a clear communication channel

§  explore link with UNESCO

§  and finally, a modus operandi for the group to work together and to expand

THE OUTCOME: A FEASIBLE PLAN

1    Although the network of Partners of the two Chairs at Athabasca University and at the Open University of the Netherlands have considerable geographic coverage, it is intended that more institutions apply for UNESCO Chairs in OER, particularly in the global South, and that a UNITWIN Network in OER be formed.

The Guidelines for applying for a UNESCO Chair will be shared and put on the OUNL Chair web site.  The two Chairholders will assist applicants.

Given the lengthy process of preparing a proposal, contacting the National Commission for UNESCO and the deadline of April 2012 for receipt by UNESCO Headquarters, it is time to get started.

2     These activities will be launched:

§  A Ph. D. school, to be led by OUNL;

§  An open access book on OER and an OER knowledge cloud to be led by Athabasca University.

3     A third activity, the exploration of a collaborative mapping of OER initiatives is underway and a number of the partners are engaged.

4. Strong support was expressed for the http://wikieducator.org/OER_university/Home ">OER University initiative to examine ways of building  OER pathways for the assessment and accreditation of formal and informal learning.