This is week 2 of George Siemens and David Wiley's Open Education course and this week asks the question, "How did we get here?" Jenny Mackness offers a lucid discussion of the past and its issues as well as linking to some relevant posts by others. Richard Coyne captures the sharing dilemma: The darkest side of this sharing narrative is that consumers and the short-term contracted labour force are fed the idea that they are participating in a new democratised economic order. The sharing economy is just part of a sales pitch, and a way of dressing up inequities and dodgy business practices."
There's certainly room for criticism of the entire endeavouyr, as Audrey Watters makes clear in this post, and I prefer to steer well clear of the U.S. policy debate. Plenty of pundits (incluiding Watters) have made that their main focus. What interested me here was the list of "experts" assembled by Inside Higher Ed: consultant Bryan Alexander; Lindsey Downs, communication manager, WICHE Cooperative for Educational Technologies (WCET); Michael Horn, chief strategy officer, Entangled Ventures; co-founder, Clayton Christensen Institute;Adam Newman, managing partner, Tyton Partners; Jonathan Poritz,office in the American Association of University Professors; and James Wiley, principal technology analyst, Eduventures Research. They each offer their own equally idiosyncratic lists of readings, which if taken together create a bit of a Frankenstein model of the field.
This article is both a follow-up to the recent UNESCO Open Educational Reources Conference and the 10-year anniversary of the Cape Town Open Education Declaration. It spotlights the ten follow-up actions emanating from the conference. But also like the recent discussions of open access, it sounds a sour note on progress to date. "We have not made anything near to the progress that we’d dreamed of. Not even close." For example, "Text books are still one of the most monopolized and impenetrable parts of the publishing world, second only to scientific journal publishing." And I found this interesting: "the biggest changes in how people learn seem to have happened elsewhere, outside formal education (and somewhat outside the open education movement even)." These are the people we should be supporting - not the institutions, not the publishers, but the people who are finding a way to support and use open education despite them.
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