Lecture capture and participatory media for education: a talk for eL@B

I suppose there comes a tolerance of living with a degree of chaos. Knowledge is quite loosely coupled, I find.The page I showed with the links came originally from a talk I did at the November eLearning at Brookes (eL@B) meeting on Participatory Media for teaching in Higher Education. The link to the slightly updated mindmap, which I showed in the class is here, where everyone should be able to reach it, should they care (click on “outline view” – lower left – to get the page with the links):


I’ll put the slides up on the VLE for the class. They are already publicly available on SlideShare:


The talk is on the Brookes Wiki, links are on the page (but it is behind an annoying wall):

There is a link to a video of the talk, here (still behind a wall):

Maybe we’ll get some of these walls lowered.

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Sustaining support

Further to the last post, Sustaining Communities, the tension in higher education is between: open educational dialogue and institutional pragmatics (a 1000 mile question?).

Open educational dialogue is concerned with networks or communities for information sharing, which take a user-centred approach to learning and design for learning on all scales. These networks make use of user-generated content for learning resources, including novel audio & video resources. Assessment, feedback and feed forward is conceived dialogically for learning. Among the benefits of open educational dialogue should be improved student induction and retention in situated learning communities. Among the technical enabling practices by which open educational dialogue might be supported, projects are working on systems mapping, business analysis (BA) and work flows. Information aggregation practice and content syndication (RSS) are being implemented using increasingly open web services and service oriented architectures (SOA). While institutions are traditionally seen as being located in physical space, mobility and location-based services are increasingly re-articulating the relationships between people, space and institutions: domestic, commercial, cultural, civic, language, faith, education, state and their various concrete reflections in houses, offices, systems, stores, transport ways, networks, authorities, maps, corridors and campuses.

Innovation themes supporting open education dialogue appear to be:

  • Portals and personal portals (programmes, eportfolios and PLEs) to CPD aligned with
  • Flexible frameworks for accreditation, underpinned by
  • Multimedia epistemologies, the semantic web and a peer-to-peer participatory culture in disciplines

Sustaining participation as principal, agent, volunteer, affiliate, staff for:

  • natural and built environments
  • food, water, energy
  • economies
  • polities and communities

Managing participatory identity

  • learning (peripheral participation)
  • authentication
  • trust (accreditation)
  • access (privileges)
  • openness

The innovative potential of these themes depends on and is set against an enabling apparatus of social institutions – institutional pragmatics. These are the means by which order is brought to, or structures educational practice along rational lines. Institutional pragmatics may be resolved to nine categories:

  1. Learning teaching and assessment
  2. Research and development
  3. Business and community engagement
  4. Learning resources
  5. eAdmin
  6. Institutional ICT services
  7. Physical estates and learning spaces
  8. Mobile, location aware and pervasive computing
  9. Green ICT

A response to Leigh Blackall: The New Colonialism in OER

In many respects, OER and the Creative Commons licenses help propel US centered ideas of copyright and intellectual property, indirectly inserting such ideas on the back of moral concepts such as sharing, freedom and openness, as though sharing, freedom and openness didn’t exist before, and that the only way to protect such notions is with legal instruments that recognise copyrights in the first place!

This is a partial response that needs more thinking through. I admire Leigh taking this once more around the loop and I find his argument almost compelling. But, the extrapolation across the whole creative commons (CC) is problematic as is the denial that any part of any leopard might change its spots: CC is a big progressive step and there is a lot that is progressive in OER, too. I am not sure that the limited uptake of CC India means that CC is a bad idea everywhere. Nor is OER, even if the Capetown Declaration is flawed, as Stephen Downes has argued [ref to come]. With real struggles to be faced like the Digital Britain initiative, which is overtly colonialist and reactionary, suspecting and projecting covert neocolonialism throughout the broad OER and CC movements renders the struggle unwinnable, alienates allies and is, as Leigh implicitly acknowledges probably irrelevant in many places anyway.

Continue reading “A response to Leigh Blackall: The New Colonialism in OER”

@eframework technical model: a key enabler of open education dialogue? #jiscssbr


The eFramework people have published their technical model here: http://www.e-framework.org/Resources/TechnicalModel/tabid/1008/Default.aspx The model depends on continuing feedback from the community. Their aim is to develop “… a common approach to the description of service-oriented design and analysis,” and provide “… a neutral means to articulate the design of software services” in order “…to assist international education and research agencies and communities in planning, prioritising and implementing IT infrastructure more effectively.”

This is a good aim. So, the question is, does it? They want the framework to assist in strategic planning, but it is hard to see how to make the step from the more or less technical abstract layers up to the policy implementation layers. There is still an exclusive, jesuitical (exegetical, hermeneutic) gap, largely inaccessible to lay people, that needs to be interpreted. You have to learn the language.

Continue reading “@eframework technical model: a key enabler of open education dialogue? #jiscssbr”

@Downes calls attention to MIT Tops List of College Copyright Violators

If we represented truly the worst-case scenario, then copyright infringement can’t be a really big problem, because we don’t have that much

I think the lesson here is that fair use practice in education has to lead legislation, not be driven by it. MIT has led the OER movement. As a pioneer and as a sponsor of “openism” it has probably tread further than many lesser institutions have dared; thereby defining the space within which use can be considered “fair” ahead of those who are more risk averse.

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Another reason to drop EndNote? EndNote sues Zotero & loses @Downes

A Virginia Circuit Court judge dismissed a lawsuit this morning against George Mason University’s Center for History and New Media.

Thomson Reuters Inc. had sued the university in a Virginia court in September for at least $10-million in damages, claiming that Zotero, a free software tool created by the university, made improper use of the company’s EndNote citation software.

Thank you to Stephen Downes for drawing attention to this story. Not sure what the implications may be, yet, but comments and sidebars draw parallels with Blackboard.

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I am daily impressed at what an excellent reference manager Zotero is

Zotero (http://www.zotero.org/) deserves a much longer pean than I am going to give it here. A web-native application, it knocks the spots off EndNote. It is developed by researchers for researchers at the Center for History and New Media (http://chnm.gmu.edu/) at George Mason University and funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Institute of Museum and Library Services, and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. It is a free, open source Firefox plug-in. Exporting your EndNote databases to Zotero is easy as pie. (Just do it!) A thousand references was a matter of seconds. They have just introduced a group feature which enables collaboration on collections. You can combine it with a web-based directory (I use JungleDisk) and have access to all your – and your group’s – full text articles from anywhere you have Firefox and an Internet connection. Zotero has scripts that allow “Cite while you write” (CWW) in MS Word *and* Open Office. And, unlike the EndNote CWW tool, Zotero’s actually works.

Zotero is one of the things that makes the Internet a good thing and is going in at the top of my favourite web apps.

The only quibble is that I find myself wishing sometimes it was not quite so closely coupled with the browser. It would be nice to be able to “break it out”. I wonder if anyone is writing a Flex version to run on Air?

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Flourish: PebblePad Technology for professional development #HEAtpd

Sarah Chesney discusses the aims, ethos, key activities and the PS portfolio developed under the Flourish project. Evaluating the use of an eportfolio for CPD for admin and academic staff. Used to ease the admin burden and provide personal learning system (PLE?), within which is an eportfolio.

Academic model practice before students.

Over reliance on email and MSWord.

Duplicating information at:

Usability was key. Should I be using PPad for this report? Or consuming my Posterous in my PPad “blog”. PPad allows tagging of artefacts.

Eportfolios were not an instrument of monitoring and control.

PCTHE at Cumbria is done using PPad.

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