By Paul Bacsich, 11 May 2011
We are very pleased to have set up a new and fast-moving literature search project melding OER and student experience/learner voice. I am leading the team at Sero who are conducting a literature search on the topic "Learner Use of Online Resources", with a strong but not exclusive focus on OER, during May-June 2011. The project is funded by the HEA/JISC OER Programme Phase II.
The OER community in and beyond the UK is encouraged to participate and the social networking/reference management tool Mendeley is being used to support this. The community will have an international flavour but the focus is on education in the UK - I am particularly keen for our collaborators on EU and international projects/consortia (VISCED, Re.VICa, POERUP etc) to work with us. You know who you are.
Our team will create a Literature Review supported by an online Database of Literature. All areas of education will be considered including universities, colleges, schools, adult/community and informal learning. The approximate balance will ideally be universities 50% and rest 50% (roughly equally across colleges, schools and ACL/informal) - but this will depend on how the literature stacks up.
"Literature" includes not only cases where the literature is on the public web or academic web (academic/publisher repositories) including on web 2.0 systems (blogs, Twitter and especially the wikis relevant to this topic), or on the web but hard to find, but also literature that has "fallen off" the web, or that is otherwise available to us.
The focus will be on the UK but selected international searches will be done in line with the team’s experience of which non-UK countries are most relevant in this area. An initial list of "first tier" countries includes Australia, Canada, New Zealand, US, Sweden, South Africa and Netherlands. However, material from any country will be considered where the country is judged by our team as relevant to the UK situation.
The team will draw on information gained from other projects it has undertaken with a global focus.
The online Database will be developed in Mendeley (http://www.mendeley.com) to allow transparency and the community to assist in its development.
- Those in the community interested in keeping up to date with the development of the Database can Follow the Mendeley groups Learner Use of OER and Learner Use of non-OER Online Resources.
- Those interested in contributing can become Members of the open group LUOERL for the community where they can comment on developments and recommend papers for review and analysis by the team. * A number of other OER-related groups and groups for specialist topics have also been set up. All groups have been set up on a long-term basis to ensure that the references do not evaporate after project end.