Open enough? Eight factors to consider when transitioning from closed to open resources and courses: A conceptual framework

  • Michael B. McNally University of Alberta
  • Erik G. Christiansen Mount Royal University
Keywords: Open Educational Resources, Open Courseware, Open Education

Abstract

Transitioning from closed courses and educational resources to open educational resources (OER) and open courseware (OCW) requires considerations of many factors beyond simply the use of an open licence. This paper examines the pedagogical choices and trade-offs involved in creating OER and OCW. Eight factors are identified that influence openness (open licensing, accessibility and usability standards, language, cultural considerations, support costs, digital distribution, and file formats). These factors are examined under closed, mixed and most open scenarios to relatively compare the amount of effort, willingness, skill and knowledge required. The paper concludes by suggesting that maximizing openness is not practical and argues that open educators should strive for ‘open enough’ rather than maximal openness.

Author Biographies

Michael B. McNally, University of Alberta
School of Library and Information Studies, Assistant Professor
Erik G. Christiansen, Mount Royal University
Mount Royal University Library, Assistant Professor / Librarian
Published
2019-06-01
How to Cite
McNally, M. B., & Christiansen, E. G. (2019). Open enough? Eight factors to consider when transitioning from closed to open resources and courses: A conceptual framework. First Monday, 24(6). https://doi.org/10.5210/fm.v24i6.9180