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Thursday, August 8, 2013

Coming soon: The OER MOOC Open Educational Resources


Almost everyone in India is conscious of the importance and urgency of the Challenges in Education and these are reflected in several other parts of the world as well. Some of these are the challenge of numbers, of relevance, of Quality, of access, of costs and of speed.

There is sometimes a sense of paralysis at the enormity of the challenge and the apparent impossibility of managing conflicting expectations. But we need a change in direction, as suggested in the scenario painted by Edward de Bono.

“Imagine a ship at sea that is in trouble. The lights keep going out. The engine is faltering. The rudder is unreliable. The first mate is drunk. The crew is very demoralised. The service is appalling. The passengers on the ship are very dissatisfied. Then a new captain and first mate are brought in by helicopter. Very quickly everything changes. The morale of the crew is lifted. Service improves. The engine is fixed. The rudder is fixed. The lights stay on. Everything is fine.

But the ship is still heading in the wrong direction.

The solution to these multiple challenges probably lies in a number of disruptive innovative solutions. These include inculcating self-learning (building on meta-cognition), measuring learning, collaborative and co-operative learning, personalisation of learning and learning analytics.

However, in addition to new systems or technologies, we need a fundamental change of perspective. Education is seen as the responsibility of the State and the system is based on authority and licenses and permissions to allow education to be transacted in modern times this is unlikely to work. As Henry Maine had said ' as society progresses, it moves from status to contract'. So must the educational system build contractual relationships between the learner and providers of learning as more important than statutory authority.

A very promising technological and pedagogical model that has received a lot of attention during the last few years and adoption by Stanford, Harvard, Duke and almost 100 of the world's top ranking Universities to teach millions of learners is that of the MOOC. The MOOC is considered on the one hand as a panacea for education and on the other as a defilement of the sanctity of the higher education tradition. The truth will probably lie somewhere in between and we must explore the potential of MOOCs to create a model of simultaneously teaching on-site and off-site learners, using synchronous and a-synchronous teacher learner interactions to deliver high quality learning to large numbers , maybe evolve a model for a classroom of 10,000 learners.

This event is a step in that direction.

 - Prof. M M Pant

Learn about the OER MOOC

The Open Education Resources is a 4 week online program designed to enhance knowledge about OERs and to equip for effective use and adopt OERs in ones programs as well as to be able to create your own OERs and contribute to the pool of OER resources. The nominal duration for completing this course is 4 weeks. However, because of the nature of this program which allows flexibility and personalisation, participants may take another 2 weeks if they so wish to complete the course. This MOOC is designed to help impart the knowledge and develop the skills needed to be successful in learning from OERs or teaching the chosen subject to post secondary students and life-long learners using OERs. MOOC after OER include access to colleagues and discussion forums with other MOOC participants centered upon common interests and pursuits.

Learning Outcomes

LO1: Become informed of the various OERs, their different sources and the skills of searching and inclusion of OERs in educational programs.
LO2: Able to search for open licensed materials and create OERs.
LO3: Appreciate the significance of OERs Open Licenses in the evolution of copyright law and how new licensing regimes such as 'creative commons' become a game changer in education.
LO4: Will be able to develop a sample OER related to his/her field of expertise.

What do we expect of the learners

In order to receive the maximum benefits from this course, participants should....
• dedicate focused time towards learning
• participate in discussions
• be active learners
• share their ideas and experiences

Course Overview

‘The OER MOOC’ comprises 4 modules. All these modules have a nominal duration of one week, each module being structured as 5 sessions, which may be seen as a daily action plan for systematic and regular participation in learning and have similar components including:
• Introductory Text based materials
• Introductory Video
• Lecture Presentations
• Blog posts for learning materials
• Tweets from time to time
• A resource base of links to relevant resources

Each module takes approximately 4-5 hours, depending on ability and engagement with online materials. The indicative themes for the 4 modules is as follows:

Module 1 - The OER movement:

Session 1.1: The story of OERs (a disruptive innovation) and its aspirations
Session 1.2: Introduction to Licensing: Copyright and Creative Commons
Session 1.3: Taxonomy / Classification/ Tagging of OERs
Session 1.4: Sources of Resources for OERs
Session 1.5: OERs OERs in India and other regions (Asia, Europe, Africa and Americas)

Module 2 - Learning from OERs:

Session 2.1: A survey of learning tools and learning opportunities with OERs
Session 2.2: How to choose an appropriate OER?
Session 2.3: Requisite learner skills set for learning from an OER
Session 2.4: Recognition of learning from OERs
Session 2.5: Augmenting the learning environment with OERs and Educational Games

Module 3 - Effective Teaching with OERs:

Session 3.1: Instructional design considerations for an OER
Session 3.2: Assessment of suitability , and adopting of an OER in a learning context
Session 3.3: Monitoring the impact of OER on a course and measuring its success
Session 3.4: Licensing: copy right and creative commons
Session 3.5: Developing an OER for a specific learning context and Contributing to an OER Repository

Module 4 - OERs and Education Providers :

Session 4.1: Policy imperatives driving OERs
Session 4.2: OERs as an economic value proposition
Session 4.3: Models of adoption of OERs: Global Case Studies
Session 4.4: Developing Institutional OER adoption plans
Session 4.5: Beyond OERs: What next?


Prof. Sanjay Jasola and Dr. Ramesh C. Sharma

The schedule provides a general timeline for pacing of the course. The course can be paced slower according to participant needs. Support will be provided for all course materials for six weeks. A schedule of synchronous sessions (if any) and any local groups created will be posted for the course. Course materials can be accessed 24/7. Weekends are intended for flexibility in pacing for participants to catch up or work ahead.

Grading & Certification: 
There is no examination or grade for this course. Certificate of participation may be given on specific requests made with the final feed-back submitted along with the post- diagnostic test.


A Helpdesk is available on a 24x7 basis, having a ticketing system and reachable through toll free number or SMS. This Helpdesk will be available for a period of 2 months. Details for contacting the Helpdesk will be provided shortly before it being activated. Till then for any help, send an e-mail to
About the Instructor
Ramesh Sharma
New Delhi, India

Prof. Sanjay Jasola

Prof. Sanjay Jasola is presently the Vice Chancellor, Graphic Era Hill University, Dehradun, India. He has worked in Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU), New Delhi and Wawasan Open University, Penang, Malaysia besides teaching Computer Science to engineering undergraduates and post graduates as regular faculty at several Universities and at IITs as Visiting Professor. He is a staunch supporter of Open Educational Resources and has conducted several face to face workshops on developing Open Educational Resources in Malaysia, Sri Lanka and India.

Dr. Ramesh C. Sharma

Dr. Sharma is working as Regional Director of Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU), India. From July 2009 till June 2011, he was the Director of the Institute of Distance and Continuing Education (IDCE), at University of Guyana, Guyana, South America. He is the Co-Editor of 'Asian Journal of Distance Education'. He has been a member of Advisory Group on Human Resources Development for the United Nations Conference on Trade an

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