OERs in Africa

OERs in Africa

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  • Nompilo


    An interesting question during the session concerned the slow uptake of OERs in Africa. Only a handful of institutions in Africa are big on OERs (UCT included). What are your theories or thoughts on this slow uptake?



    This is how we talked about OER in the text chat during the live meeting:

    Thula: wonder why slow OER uptake
    Tutaleni Asino: I am not so sure that we have a shared understanding of what OER is in the Afrikan context
    perien boer: I am also challenged with OER in that I recognize that we do not frequently share our resources.
    Tony Carr: Tutaleni, in whats ways do we have conflicting understandings of OER in Africa?
    Thula: here SMEs seem to fear that they will no longer be needed
    kolawole: mostly educators apathy to oer is responsible for its slow take off
    Alicebz: I think that institiutional IP policies impact on OERs
    Barbara Jones: people are challenged by not knowing how OERs can be adapted to their own context
    Tutaleni Asino: Tony, I think most of what I see being used to define openness is not from our context. Openness in educational resources requires that we value learners contribution and learner access at any time. Most of our systems in Afrika are hiearchical where questioning elders and accessing materials and brining them to school without the approval of the elder is frowned upon



    Hi Nompilo and Tony

    I agree with the comments from the chat yesterday. I think part of it is the culture of not really knowing how to access and share the resources. From some research we we conducted a couple of years ago Marshall, Richards, Kinuthia et al. we found that some of the underlying issues (albeit not just in the African context were:
    OER come in different sizes
    not always available for topic
    May require quite a bit of modification before using
    Scope and level may not always be available
    Can vary widely in media and content quality
    A culture of not sharing (mine)
    No clear model or policies to encourage adoption

    • This reply was modified 8 years, 7 months ago by Wanjira.



    Hi Wanjira, Nompilo & Tony
    Thanks Nompilo for opening this discussion space on OER. I agree with Tutaleni regarding the unresolved debate on what we mean by ‘open’ as well as lack of shared understanding of OER. The underlying issues raised by Wanjira are also relevant to our African context. I have also found book chapter by Wanjira quite engaging: Open resources for open learning in developing countries: deciphering trends for policies, quality and standards considerations. Perhaps we now need to look beyond the challenges and craft African context responsive OER adoption strategies.

    • This reply was modified 8 years, 7 months ago by Thula.
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