Fostering openness within a higher education institution: Tensions, opportunities and a work in progress
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At our institution, the authors have engaged in open practices and have sought to promote a culture of openness. In this chapter, we discuss factors that we have identified as fostering a culture of openness at school, faculty, and university levels, and we investigate the tensions and challenges experienced in developing a culture of openness. We approach openness as a dynamic and negotiated space which encompasses “collaborative practices [including]… the creation, use and reuse of OER, as well as pedagogical practices employing participatory technologies and social networks for interaction, peer-learning, knowledge creation and empowerment of learners” (Cronin, 2017, ¶ 10). Though openness is often assumed to be a democratizing approach to education, scholars have noted that its practice appears to be complicated and unequal (Gourlay, 2015; Veletsianos & Kimmons, 2012). This chapter contributes to the conversation about what openness looks like in practice. We believe that openness in practice is much more complex than advocates note, and we anticipate that by sharing our experiences, other practitioners who are exploring open practices at their own institutions will benefit. This chapter is divided into four sections: context, factors contributing to a culture of openness, tensions and challenges encountered in enacting openness, and the conclusion.
DescriptionThis is a preprint of the article. The definitive version of record is available at https://doi.org/10.1163/9789004422988_016.