Courtesy Affordable Online Colleges
This report, funded by a grant from The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation with additional support from Pearson, examines the attitudes, opinions, and use of Open Educational Resources (OER) among teaching faculty in U.S. higher education. Some of the key findings:
- Faculty are not very aware of open educational resources. Depending on the strictness of the awareness measure, between two-thirds and three-quarters of all faculty classify themselves as unaware on OER.
- Faculty appreciate the concepts of OER. When presented with the concept of OER, most faculty say that they are willing to give it a try.
- Awareness of OER is not a requirement for adoption of OER. More faculty are using OER than report that they were aware of the term OER. Resource adoption decisions are often made without any awareness of the specific licensing of the material, or its OER status.
- Faculty judge the quality of OER to be roughly equivalent to that of traditional educational resources. Among faculty who do offer an opinion, three-quarters rank OER quality as the same as or better than traditional resources.
The most significant barrier to wider adoption of OER remains a faculty perception of the time and effort required to find and evaluate it. The top three cited barriers among faculty members for OER adoption all concern the discovery and evalua- tion of OER materials.
- Faculty are the key decision makers for OER adoption. Faculty are almost always involved in an adoption decision and — except for rare instances — have the primary role. The only exceptions are in a minority of two-year and for-profit institutions, where the administration takes the lead.
The report is available for download:
- PDF version: Opening the Curriculum: Open Education Resources in U.S. Higher Education, 2014 (pdf)
- e-Book version for Kindle (.mobi format): Opening the Curriculum (.mobi)
- e-Book version for iPad or Nook (.epub format): Opening the Curriculum (.epub)
- Infographic: Opening the Curriculum Infographic
Opening the Curriculum: Open Educational Resources in U.S. Higher Education, 2014 is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
As a current member of the advisory council for the UPCEA Center for Online Leadership and Strategy, I’m passing along this notice about the upcoming 2015 Summit for Online Leadership and Strategy. I highly recommend this conference to all those engaged in the leadership of online program delivery and I hope you’ll join me there. ~ Jason Rhode @jasonrhode
Join key campus leaders — presidents, provosts, deans and practitioners directly engaged in the management and delivery of online programs — at the 2015 Summit for Online Leadership and Strategy in San Antonio this January!
Attend concurrent and general sessions on pivotal challenges and opportunities including the strategic growth of online programs, virtual leadership, online marketing, competency-based education, predictive analytics, and more.
Don’t let the early bird registration rate pass you by – be sure to register before December 8th to save $50! Remember that groups of four or more can receive a 10 percent discount on their group registration. Call the UPCEA office at 202-659-3130 for more information.
See you in January!
Amy Heitzman, Ph.D.
Chief Learning Officer, UPCEA
It’s my pleasure to announce the completion of the Faculty Development and Instructional Design Center annual report for the 2013-14 academic year. This year, we created a new digital annual report that is available at facdevreport.niu.edu. Below are a few highlights.
During 2013-2014, the Faculty Development and Instructional Design Center contributed to Northern Illinois University's mission "…to promote excellence and engagement in teaching and learning, research and scholarship, creativity and artistry, and outreach and service" by collaborating with various academic and support units to meet the ongoing and emerging needs of NIU faculty, staff, administrators, and graduate teaching assistants in their teaching, technology integration, professional development, and related needs. This marked the fifteenth full academic year of operation for the Center since we were reorganized in August 1998. Some of our significant accomplishments this year include:
- Offering 143 programs for 1,663 participants, which totaled 5,421 hours of professional development
- Conducting 1,018 consultations with 367 unique faculty, instructors, staff, and graduate teaching assistants from 80 academic and support units
- Serving on 26 committees, councils, and organizations within NIU and the broader Faculty Development community
- Being recognized with 8 awards, both as a unit and as individuals, for commitment and contributions to NIU, teaching effectiveness, technology integration, and the broader Faculty Development community.
Feel free to explore and learn more about our activities and accomplishments from the past year.
Jason Rhode, Ph.D.
Since 2004, EDUCAUSE has partnered with higher education institutions to investigate the technologies that matter most to undergraduate students. In 2014, the EDUCAUSE Center for Analysis and Research technology survey was sent to approximately 1.5 million students at 213 institutions, yielding 75,306 responses across 15 countries. This year’s findings are based on a stratified random sample of 10,000 U.S. respondents and shed light on a number of topics.
General student technology experiences and expectations
- Technology is embedded into students’ lives, and students are generally inclined to use and to have favorable attitudes toward technology. However, technology has only a moderate influence on students’ active involvement in particular courses or as a connector with other students and faculty.
- Students’ academic use of technology is widespread but not deep. They are particularly interested in expanding the use of a few specific technologies.
- Most students look online or to family or friends for technology support. The minority who use institutional help desks report positive experiences.
Anytime, anywhere access to learning that is enabled by device proliferation
- More students own mobile devices now than ever. Although students rate network performance as generally good, projected increases in connected devices could soon challenge even the most robust campus networks.
- Many students use mobile devices for academic purposes. Their in-class use is more likely when instructors encourage such use; however, both faculty and students are concerned about their potential for distraction.
- More students than ever have experienced a digital learning environment. The majority say they learn best with a blend of online and face-to-face work.
- Undergraduates value the learning management system (LMS) as critical to their student experience but rarely make full use of it. Today’s undergraduates want a mobile-friendly, highly personalized, and engaging LMS experience.
- Most students support institutional use of their data to advise them on academic progress in courses and programs. Many of the analytic functions students seek already exist in contemporary LMSs.
- Few undergraduates have taken a massive open online course (MOOC). Students still view traditional college degrees as the gold standard for résumés. Few students would include digital badges, e-portfolios, or competency creden- tials on their résumés.
Although technology is omnipresent in the lives of students, leveraging technology as a tool to engage students is still evolving. We know from looking at longitudinal data from past student studies that students still have a complex relationship with tech- nology; they recognize its value, but they still need guidance when it comes to using technology in meaningful and engaging ways for academics. Students are still ready to use their mobile devices more for academics, but we haven’t yet seen widespread application of this. Students also still prefer blended learning environments, and their expectations are increasing for these hybrid online/face-to-face experiences.
The following study materials and resources are available: