UNESCO and OER Foundation join hands in building capability in OER

A free online workshop designed for educators and students who want to learn more about open educational resources (OER), copyright and creative commons licenses will take place from 3 to 14 December 2012. The Open Content Licensing for Educators (OCL4Ed) Online course is organized by the OER Foundation, the Commonwealth of Learning (COL) Chair in OER based at Otago Polytechnic, the UNESCO-COL Chair in OER at Athabasca University, and Creative Commons New Zealand.

The OCL4Ed initiative was first piloted in March 2011. Two workshops organized in 2012 saw 1,583 registrations from more than 90 countries. In the framework of the initiative, free training opportunities have been offered, until now, to more than 2,000 educators worldwide. The pre- and post-workshop self-evaluations from the January 2012 event provide evidence of learning.

The upcoming workshop aims to contribute to the implementation of the 2012 Paris OER Declaration adopted at the 2012 World OER Congress, and specifically of the article (e), which calls for “capacity building for sustainable development of quality learning materials”.

"We have moved beyond theorizing about free capacity development in open education. Using openly licensed courses for professional development provides an exemplar for sustainable professional development towards high quality learning for all," says Dr Wayne Mackintosh, Director of the OER Foundation and COL Chair in OER at Otago Polytechnic.

UNESCO's Office in Apia funded the original development of the Open Content Licensing for Educators, and enabled the OER Foundation to adopt an open and collaborative development process including volunteers from the OER Foundation, WikiEducator, the OpenCourseWare Consortium and Creative Commons.

All materials are openly licensed under a CC-BY license and freely available for reuse by all UNESCO Member States. The OCL4Ed incorporates features used by the Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) to scale peer-learning support for thousands of concurrent students.

Members of the UNESCO OER team will assist with the facilitation of the workshop. The Chairs in OER are participating as lead facilitators of the course in collaboration with the UNESCO UNITWIN OER Chair network.

The Workshop schedule and registration details are available online.