Review: UNICA Seminar in Prague – presentation about OER

The 4th UNICA scholarly communication seminar has taken place the last three days in Prague and it was really a pity, that I had to leave it after the first day. As announced, I was invited to present the results of the OLCOS project.

Here are the slides of my presentation, where I concentrated on topics that should be from higher interest for the participants (librarians, IT experts & e-journal experts from several universities of European capitals):

  • Schaffert, Sandra (2008). Open Educational Resources as Facilitators of Open Educational Practices: Results and Recommendations of the EU-Project “OLCOS”. Presentation at the Fourth UNICA Scholarly Communication Seminar, 15-16 May, Charles University, Prague. [slides]

One (I think, the first) reaction was, that I did not mentioned in my presentation the following: That the usage of third parties‘ materials is one of the main problems hindering the publication of existing digital learning materials as OER. Yes, I did not mentioned it – as several other things from the 160 pages OLCOS study, edited by Guntram Geser … 🙂

Additionally, another interesting informal discussion after my presentation – I was asked to give a recommendation for a licence for a repository with scientific & educational content – shows (again) that licensing is a completely underestimated challenge for the reality of content (exchange) in education (I do not see these problems, at least not in this extent, in scientific (open access) publishing).

To sum up: Exiting building (the Charles university) & setting, interesting contacts – great city. Thanks!

OER/OLCOS ICL Paper online

The papers of the ICL 2007 (Villach, Austria) are now online. So, our paper

  • Geser, Guntram; Hornung-Prähauser, Veronika & Schaffert, Sandra (2007). Observing Open E-Learning Content: A Roadmap for Educational Policy and Institutions and Hands-On Tips for Practitioners. Full paper in the Proceedings of the Interactive Computer Aided Learning Conference (ICL) in Villach (26-28 September 2007).

is now available via the TeLearn Database (kaleidoscope project): [go to text]

I do not know why our other paper

  • Schaffert, Sandra & Hornung-Prähauser, Veronika (2007). Thematic Session: Open Educational Resources and Practices. A Short Introduction and Overview. Full paper in the Proceedings of the Interactive Computer Aided Learning Conference (ICL) in Villach (26-28 September 2007).

is not available … but I think, enough papers about our OLCOS project are online 😀

OER & OLCOS in elearningpapers

Today the new issue of the elearningpapers, which forms part of the portal, was published. Inside you can find:

Schaffert, Sandra & Geser, Guntram (2008). Open Educational Resources and Practices. In: elearningpapers, 7, Februar 2008. [to text]

With this paper (in English) elearningpapers published extended abstracts in sixteen European languages. Really funny to see that I should have written something with titles as „Kaikille avoin oppimateriaali ja käytännön kokemukset“ (FI), „Odprte izobraževalne vsebine in prakse“ (SL),  „Ανοιχτά Εκπαιδευτικά Μέσα και Πρακτικές“ (EL), „Szabad tanítási forrás és gyakorlat“ (HU) … 😀

So this is also another great success for our project „OLCOS“ which was initiated by my colleague Veronika Hornung-Prähauser and co-ordinated by our EduMedia Group at Salzburg Research…. The project „OLCOS“ finished already in December of the last year but we get ongoing invitations for presentations of the results.

BTW: This article will also be included in a printed elearningpapers publication, presenting a selection of the best papers since 2006!

SCIL conference 2008

The 3rd International SCIL Congress is announced for the 22-23 May 2008 with the title „The changing face of Learning – Creating the right balance“. It is really a pity that I am not able to be there. But thanks to Graham Attwell! – a paper of my colleagues Guntram, Wolf & me will be presented there by him (and will be published in the proceedings of the congress):

Guntram Geser, Wolf Hilzensauer and Sandra Schaffert, Salzburg Research (presented by Graham Attwell): Open Educational Resources: Recommendations and Exemplary Tutorials.

( Session Six, 23 May 2008).

UNICA Scholary Communication Seminar in May 2008

The Fourth UNICA Scholary Communication Seminar 2008 takes place at the Charles University in Prague (15th – 16th May, 2008). I am invited to talk about OLCOS and its results and recommendations („Open Educational Resources as Facilitators of Open Educational Practices: Results and Recommendations of the EU-Project „OLCOS“). I am looking forward to this event because as an old stager [according to leo that’s the correct translation of the German „alter Hase“ – old rabbit 🙂 ] in Open Access I am curious if the participants – library experts and scholary communication experts – at this event are all „open“ to the ideas of OER and Open Access. …

My presentation will be based on the OLCOS Roadmap, edited by my colleague Guntram Geser:

Guntram Geser (2007). Open Educational Practices and Resources – Olcos Roadmap 2012. Salzburg. More information and free download:

The abstract of my presentation is still in work, but it could look like …

In the last few years Open Educational Resources (OER) have gained much attention. Experts who understand OER as a means of leveraging educational practices and outcomes define OER based on the following core attributes: that the content is provided free of charge and liberally licensed for re-use in educational activities, that the content should ideally be designed for easy re-use in that open content standards and formats are being employed, and that software is used for which the source code is available (i.e. Open Source soft ware). From January 2006 to December 2007 Open e-Learning Content Observatory Services (OLCOS), a project co-funded by the European Commission under the eLearning Programme, explored how OER can make a difference in teaching and learning. The project aimed at promoting OER through different activities and products such as a European OER roadmap and OER tutorials. We present some results of the roadmap which provides an overview of the OER landscape and describes possible pathways towards a higher level of production, sharing and usage of OER. The roadmap emphasises that the knowledge society demands competencies and skills that require innovative educational practices based on open sharing and evaluation of ideas, fostering of creativity, and teamwork among the learners. Moreover, the roadmap provides recommendations on required measures and actions to support decision making at the level of educational policy and institutions.