Before we all headed off to OpenEd earlier in November and got stuck into our data analysis sprint last week (coding and cleaning some of the data we’ve amassed through the questionnaires we’ve been running over the past few months) I headed down to London for MozFest 2013 and the Hit the Roadmap: A Human Timeline of the Open Education Space event last month. Working with Jane Park (Creative Commons), our Linked Fellow for our School of Open collaboration, we spent the week discussing next steps for the research conducted so far on four of the facilitated School of Open courses: Copyright for Educators (US and Australian versions of the course), CC for K-12 Educators and Writing Wikipedia Articles: The Basics and Beyond. Following a review of the data made available to us by Jane and the course facilitators, and the questionnaire responses from course participants, I’ll begin writing up our findings next month. The results of our study will be published as a joint authored report in New Year 2014.
We also talked face-to-face about the OER Research Hub’s planned School of Open course. This course will focus on researching OER and include reflections and best practice gained through the process of conducting research for the project. We anticipate that the course will be launched in conjunction with our planned Researcher Pack, which will offer a range of tools to assist anyone who is interested in researching the impact of OER. We’re looking forward to being able to tell you more about our plans in the New Year. However, in the meantime, in order for us to make this the most useful and relevant course to YOU, we need your input… All suggestions and comments welcome!
We anticipate running one facilitated version of this course before making the course stand-alone. You can also read more about the course and Jane’s own reflections on her week with us here.
Hit the Roadmap and Mozfest 2013!
Toward the end of the week Jane and I headed to London to participate in Hit the Roadmap… Co-hosted by School of Open, Creative Commons, P2PU, Open Knowledge Foundation and FLOSS Manuals this was – like MozFest – a totally hands-on event. Around 10-15 of us brainstormed and mapped (involving lots of stickies!) the history of “open,” chronologically charting events and projects on a long strip of paper (see the picture above for the start of this process!). Jane facilitated the session and got us warmed up with introductions, including a spectrogram exercise where we positioned ourselves along a line in order to illustrate what stance we took on different statements about openness and education. Contributions to the timeline have been put into Google docs and are being visualised via TimeMapper. Find out more in Marieke’s (Open Knowledge Foundation) blog post.
Next day was the facilitators session for MozFest before the festival started that evening. Several hundred people facilitated makes, hosted sessions and organised activities. There was even a whole section at MozFest totally devoted to badging! The focusing on “doing” at MozFest and the range of stuff happening and opportunities for getting involved in innovative projects and ideas was immense. The atmosphere was exciting and collaborative: need a Python expert? Just say the word and somebody would be there to help you… An awesome way to get help with projects and brainstorm ideas.
Jane ran several different scrums at MozFest (read her overview of the weekend’s events here) including a session on a Digial Self-Preservation Toolkit. This scrum got participants to think about their digital identity and “…explor[ed]the idea of what happens to your body of creative, educational, or scientific work when you die.” Jane and I also jointly devised, and I facilitated, a scrum in the Digital Storytelling track: Be an Open Data Detective! Participants could drop by and work with me to use openly available tools to create visual representations with some of our open data, including that gathered as part of the School of Open research we’ve been carrying out, and comparative data from the OpenStax and the Flipped Learning Network questionnaires. Impressively – given the sheer number of different makes on offer to MozFest participants – a couple of people sat with me and worked through different bits of data. Others dropped by to find out more about the project or to play a bit of OER-archery. A big shout out must go to @DanielBhugon for creating some code to visualise Yes/No responses to questions…. It’s definitely the start of something good, so thanks again, Dan!
Finally, there are a lot of blog posts out there on MozFest. For different perspectives and to get a sense of the range of activities that were on offer, see (in no particular order):
Chad Sansing’s classroots.org blog
Rob Hammond’s blog
Marieke Guy’s Open Education Working Group blog Marieke Guy’s Open Education Working Group blog
Chris McAvoy’s blog Chris McAvoy’s blog
Doug Belshaw’s blog