Helping community colleges in the USA better understand the difference OER is making to students, institutions and educator practices
This case study originally appeared on the OER Hub website at http://oerhub.net/what-we-do/case-studies/
December 2012 – August 2014
The Community College Consortium for Open Educational Resources (CCCOER) at the Open Education Consortium is composed of over 250 community and technical colleges representing individual, regional, and statewide consortia members in 17 North American states and provinces. OER Research Hub worked with CCCOER to collect quantitative and qualitative data from educators in seven states about the impact of using OER on their students, institutions and educational practice. The results showed that most educators reported positive effects on teaching practice as a result of OER use, particularly around peer collaboration and improved subject knowledge. Positive effects were also identified for learners, especially around increased self-reliance, subject interest and experimentation. The research also revealed that while many OER creators in colleges believe in the value of open licensing, few seem to practice it. Most educators believe OER saves their students money but the picture is less clear for financial savings in institutions.
Results were disseminated through the CCCOER network, through a webinar programme, and at high-profile conference presentation, helping educators to better understand their own practice and strategies for OER adoption. Community colleges were intended to increase educational access by being low cost and having open enrolments. They were also set up to facilitate credit transfer to universities. Growth was rapid though the 1960s and 1970s. There are now 1,166 colleges in the USA, providing access to high quality affordable academic programmes as well as preparing students for further study.
Farrow, R. & Daly, U. (2014). OER Impact at Community Colleges. eLearning 2014. Hilton Lake Buena Vista, Orlando, Florida, USA. Available from http://www.slideshare.net/OER_Hub/20140215-oerrh-cccoer-pres-34906775
Farrow, R. & Daly, U. (2014). OER Research Hub examines OER Impact in community colleges. Open Education Global 2014: Open Education for a Multicultural World. Available from http://conference.oeconsortium.org/2014/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/Paper_85.pdf
Pitt, R. (2014). OER Research on Open Textbook adoption and Librarians (webinar). Available from http://www.slideshare.net/OER_Hub/cccoer-42566531
Daly, U. (2013). CCCOER / OER Research Hub Fellowship Report. Available from http://www.slideshare.net/UnaDaly/cccoer-oerrh-fellowship