OER wishlist

Following on from our earlier musings on parallels between recipe sharing and searching for OERs, we wanted to jot down some of our thoughts on what elements should be included in the ideal “home” for the social sciences research methods collection. For starters, we would like to borrow the sense of community from the recipe-sharing website we discussed earlier. Within that environment, we would like to see a facility for providing ratings and recommendations – similar to those provided by Amazon or TripAdvisor (in fact, these two websites are mentioned in a recent blog post by the Learning Technology team at University of Nottingham). Yet another useful feature, borrowed from Amazon, would be the listmania functionality to create lists to share the users’ “expert knowledge” and thus combine both the collective recommendations (the rating system) with a more personalised way to share individual expertise on a given subject. Finally, we would love to borrow some features from Google Scholar – the number of citations of an OER, related resources and signposting to relevant repositories where the resource has been deposited, not to mention the veneer of academic respectability. In particular, the citation facility would solve some of the concerns that frequently come up whenever sharing and re-use of OERs are concerned. As Scott Leslie (who recently completed an Olnet research fellowship looking at OER tracking) writes on his blog, one of the problems of depositing in repositories is that the content owners don’t get a good sense of the popularity of their resources and where else they are being used. These concerns were voiced within the OER pilot programme as well – as one of the academics interviewed by the research team at the Leeds University OTTER project put it, “my concern is that you don’t know once it is downloaded what is happening to it”. At the same time, if we were able to put together an interface which incorporated all of the above mentioned items on the C-SAP wish-list, would we be celebrating an OER marriage made in heaven or rather, in the spirit of recent Halloween festivities, would we be creating Frankenstein’s bride?

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One Response to OER wishlist

  1. Pat says:

    Some one said bride of Frankenstein so I thought I’d see if I could get her number 🙂

    If you see listmania as “courses” and allow people to build groups of OER then that is something we’re looking at with Xpert.

    Also, as for tracking. We have a cunning plan. Could you email me if you are game to do so 🙂

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