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Open Education in Practice. Hard and soft skills for creating open educational resources (OERs) and open content communities

Crowd and cloud: towards a collaborative future, 5 – 7 September 2012

The Designs on e-Learning (DeL) conference leads and fosters innovative practices in teaching and learning with technology in art, design and communication. (Download abstract and slides below)

Conference paper/workshop:

In this workshop participants will explore together the challenges, limitations and benefits of ‘being open online’ using an open online resource sharing day-to-day arts practice and research of art, design and media staff, students, alumni and practitioners. We will learn by doing and try out various essential live online practical OER experiments that question what being open and online means to us our practice and identities.

As education merges in the rapidly expanding field of social and cultural technological change, maintaining progressive practice in these new digitally enhanced learning spaces can presents new expectations, anxieties and challenges for all, being open online forces us to evaluate our web literacy skills. The technical skills or (hard skills) for developing or creating our personal and professional online environments can be achieved or learnt through various courses or online resources, although keeping pace with new and evolving applications and systems demands constant engagement.  As teachers and students we are socialised into what could be seen as restricted, uncreative, unfamiliar, out-dated and closed mode of being online, the VLE or institutional repository is built to conform to ‘old and closed’ conventional academic structures and processes.

There is a huge leap to be made from the formal closed VLE into the ‘new’ open online ‘edusocial’ (educational social networked) open space, a leap into the unknown. There are currently no rules in this new open educational space and it’s something we are not being socialised into, we need to learn it ourselves and learn by doing.

As creative practitioners we are attracted to the unknown and the challenges of the new, as with other significant and historical technological movements such as TV and cinema the language of the media/practice can be defined for us by others. The open educational movement presents a challenge to the sector as a whole; we have the opportunity to define our own new modes of educational practice.


Chris Follows, DIAL project manager (Digital Integration into Arts Learning)  will draw from resources developed during the DIAL project from the many groups who have been engaged in the JISC funded digital literacies (DL) project at University of the arts London (UAL).  DIAL explores the pace of technological change and its impact on the day-to-day practices of its staff and students and aims to address improved graduate employability and cultural change by developing confidence and capability in the adoption and integration of digitally enhanced learning for staff and students.

Chris will summarise UALs experiences and perspectives of developing open educational resources (OERs) and Open educational practice (OEP) through involvement with JISC UKOER programmes, SCORE and creating

process.arts emerged from grassroots activity, since 2006 its maintained a sustainable and independent system of development, through agile web development. The project fully relays on individual and group participation and is managed and developed through a combination of voluntary participation, research secondments and fellowships. The overall concept is to support ‘open practice’ cross college and sector communication and knowledge sharing.

process.arts is not a repository or a VLE and courses are not represented in this space. process.arts provides an alternative environment for informal open content experimentation, mostly small pieces of content that do not have to represent a courses, be designed for learning, accreditation or represent an institution. process.arts provides a new ‘open learning’ space that straddles the institution (formal learning) and the social (informal learning) therefore allowing a space for open educational practitioners to develop a new open academic social practices/language without conforming or being influenced by pre-existing academic structures and processes.

Participants are encouraged to create accounts on process.arts prior to the workshop and please bring along some image, text and video resources to upload if possible.

Updated – 04-05-2012

Title Mr.

First Name Chris

Family Name Follows

Position Project Manager, Digital integration into arts learning (DIAL)

Institution University of the arts London

Country United Kingdom


Category (Workshop)

Key words: Open, educational, resources, practice, OER

Call details:

As digital technologies continue to evolve and transform the pedagogic landscape, we face exciting and innovative possibilities for the future of education. New forms of mobile learning and cloud computing are shaping the learning environment, enabling students to learn in multiple physical, social and conceptual spaces.

The 2012 designs on e-learning conference will explore the impact of these shifts on our teaching practice, and question how we can maximise their potential for improving student learning. This is an opportunity to join the crowd to collectively generate ideas, tackle problems, and share best practices in e-learning. The format of the conference will be innovative, with barcamps, streamed sessions, discussions, performances and creative work.

Topics of interest include but are not limited to:

  • Collaboration and Community Building
  • Digital Literacy
  • Social Media
  • Sustainability
  • Studio and Technology
  • User Generated Content
follows-c.docx54.86 KB
paralell-session-2_cw.pdf479.64 KB
del_process_arts.pptx8.93 MB
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Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported
This Work, Open Education in Practice. Hard and soft skills for creating open educational resources (OERs) and open content communities, by cfollows is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license.