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Practice, teaching and open educational practice

How can we bring about changes in belief and attitude

It’s important to understand existing cultures before introducing new cultures. It’s easy for educational developers or OER specialists to lose touch or truly understand the needs and practices of its stakeholders. The role of open technologies in encouraging sharing and reuse of open content can only become a reality if the open technologies are being developed with and for the stakeholders involved. There cannot be one OEP to suit all, there's four.


To support the understanding of the meaning of ‘practice’ in the context of open educational practice and art and design, we can reference Shreeve’s (2008) five categories of practice (Shreeve, A. (2008). Transitions: variations in tutors' experience of practice and teaching relations in art and design. PhD Thesis, Lancaster University, Lancaster):

Shreeve’s 5 Categories of practice. Relationships between professional practice and teaching practice.

Category 1: Dropping in. There is an asymmetrical relationship between practice and teaching with the focus on practice. Knowledge from practice is seen as being passed on to the student.

Category 2: Moving across. There is an asymmetrical relationship between practice and teaching with the focus on teaching. Knowledge from practice is used in teaching students.

Category 3: Two Camps. There is a symmetrical relationship between practice and teaching, but they are seen as two different and separate things and tension exists between them. Knowledge from practice is used in teaching students.

Category 4: Balancing. There is a symmetrical relationship between practice and teaching with a fluid exchange of knowledge between both.

Category 5: Integrating. There is a holistic relationship between practice and teaching. There is an elision between practice and teaching knowledge and they become one and the same thing.
4 Categories of Open educational Practice OEP, from focus group meetings, general feedback, observation and research. Also see  D.White, Oxford, visitors and residents (accessed April 2012)

OEP unaware (Novice)

OEP aware (visitor)

OEP starter (lodger)

OEP resident

Never heard of or know what open educational practice is, not sure how it relates to them.  

Interested in the notion of practicing or being online as a professional, happy to learn more & observer others. Look and use online resources regularly with little awarnes of OERs and not does not produce or contribute their own OERs.

Has been involved and interested with online activities but now starting to explore the new potential of open educational practice and OERs. Start to create online resources with creative commons licenses, still searching for the ideal place to settle, live and practice OER and OEP. Will have many homes. keen to understand more about the open movement and creative commons.

Posts and comments OER content daily. Has one main 'permanent' online professional/educational community domain (OER home) but uses various commercial social/rich media channels to feed, promote, debate and find OERs, a combined (Edu/social) space. Contributes to the OER community and supports others in OEP personal and professional development. Interested in wide variety of OER subjects and not only their specialist subjects but the multidisciplinary possibilities.

What does open educational practice mean to you?

It’s not something I’ve engaged in.

I don’t know what I would put online

Students are online I’m offline its not my space, I’m the face to face contact.

Open is seen as content not anything else


We use other people’s resources more than create our own. We don’t always monitor the quality of these resources.

Consume more content through more  hobbyist produced materials rather than through the professionals eLearning content.

You have to acknowledge what is it; you’re dealing with something that is quite woolly, vague concept, can’t be grasped?

I see OEP as making my life easier. I like to cluster/tag information & to link and reference content together, ideas and connections together can be openly viewed and developed. Its good to have it out in the world rather than hidden away, old content keeps popping up, its easy to reuse & update.  

What helped/would help you to get started in OEP



Always kept a journal 1992 – paper this was to document processes – trade secrets are not so trade secrets.  So being open and making these journals online seems to be the future.

Finding a place or creating your own place to live online. A place you feel is right for you and your practice.

What are the problems for OEP to address, fears, concerns or improvements

Generally agreeable with group

Not want to see teaching staff replaced by videos.

Clarity of IP, there’s no clarity.

Teaching materials belong to the university is a concern 

Sharing has moved on somewhat at UL, we’re much better at sharing

Confidence about if I take something away from my teaching how will it impact on my teaching. Changes the teaching role by replacing with video tutorials.

Fear that technicians are going to be undermined by this being open.

Nervous, trial and error, curious about what I write

Forums – are a good way of learning how to be open and discuss openly but can be one way. Like to get more feedback and know what people are doing with my resources and posts.


Find course specific content

Better attribution processes

Clarity of IP

24/7 OEP, when can you switch off

Improve participation and communication

More involvement

More creative approaches to OER and OEP and not try fit the new into the old


What are the motivations for OEP

Generally agreeable with group


Online profiles

Energy involved in teaching large amount of students, open education is possible to help save time.


Student pathways

(blueprint plans secrets, sharing the invisible) –



Not about how we teach about how they learn

How much do we share with are competitors

Unknown potential, its great to be part of something that’s emerging, also a bit nervy about being open.  


Would like to know what do the students feel about open education, if paying for the course and its all being open, is this a problem?

Having everything to hand. Being able to send links and reference content easily.

New employment opportunities








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