The Open Scholar

In a developing world of open educational content and open communities of learners, what is the role of the 'open scholar'?

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Terry Wassall
21 September 2009

After listening to Graham Attwell's views (particularly at the FALT2009 Postdigital session in the Lass O'Gowrie) on how we should/could use Web 2.0 platforms and applications to extend education beyond the formal educational institutions and Terry Anderson's keynote presentation at the ALT-C 2009 conference in Manchester this year where he discussed the notion of the 'open scholar', this cloud has been created to collect together ideas and resources that can help define the role of the open scholar and how this can be translated into practical activity and engagement with 'open learners'.

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Extra content

Professor Martin Hall, VC Salford, giving keynote at ECE Salford, 

"Killing off Mickey Mouse: Open Knowledge, Open Innovation"


Frances Bell
10:09 on 21 September 2009

Terry Anderson's charactoristics of the Open Scholar - summary

  • Open Scholars Create
  • Open Scholars Use and Contribute Open Educational Resources
  • Open Scholars Self Archive
  • Open Scholars Apply their research
  • Open Scholars do Open Research
  • Open Scholars Filter and Share With Others
  • Open Scholars support emerging Open Learning alternatives
  • Open Scholars Publish in Open Access Journals
  • Open Scholars Create Open Access Books
  • Open Scholars comment openly on the works of others
  • Open Scholars Build Networks
  • Open Scholars Lobby for Copyright Reform
  • Open Scholars Assign Open Textbooks
  • Open Scholars Induce Open Students
  • Open Scholars support Open Students
  • Open Scholars Teach Open Courses
  • Open Scholars Research Openness
  • Open Scholars are Change Agents
  • Open Scholars Battle with Time
  • Open Scholars are Involved in the Future

Terry Wassall
10:12 on 21 September 2009 (Edited 12:07 on 21 September 2009)

Embedded Content


Gráinne Conole
9:21am 21 September 2009

Hi Terry very interesting and a great topic for a cloud! It reminds me of the work that Martin Weller is doing on openness - for example his most recent blog post - will add a link in a mo.


Terry Wassall
9:31am 21 September 2009

Hi Gráinne. Thanks for the link to Martin's post. I hope to find something by Graham to link to that covers his views and ideas on this. It's clearly something he is passionate about.  I have a few ideas of my own but they are a bit unfocussed at the moment! I'm sure some useful discussion has already taken place that I need to catch up on.

Gráinne Conole
9:40am 21 September 2009

Yep sure Graham will have written lots on this on his blog. Also you might like to look at Josie Fraser's stuff and George Roberts. Would be good to get a synthesis of some of the current thinking on this. I've written some stuff on my blog about the changing nature of academic discourse - will add a link.

Terry Wassall
12:44pm 22 September 2009

Reading through links and resources a lot of the stuff on open scholars seems to be about full-time professional scholars being open in a variety of ways - their practice, research, publications etc. Perhaps what I am interested in as a soon-to-be ex-professional scholar is more along the lines of an open tutor/facilitator/mentor/co-learner sort of role.

Terry Wassall
6:45pm 22 September 2009

phd students as 'open scholars'? It would be a great way to start an academic career and give me an excuse to bang on about web 2.0

Gráinne Conole
8:17pm 22 September 2009

Nice idea terry - i have been playing with the notion openness... open design, open teaching, open learning, open research... what would it mean to expose our ideas/thoughts and share our cummulation of resources/links on an ongoing basis? An extension of what happens to some extent already in the blogosphere but in a learning and teaching context. I think it could be very powerful and liberating.

Antonella Esposito
10:37am 23 September 2009

Key topic indeed, Terry! I think that embedding openness in scholars’ practice is an essential condition to facilitate embedding Web 2.0 approach also in academic teaching practice. The spread of the ‘open scholar’ attitude can contribute to overcome some of the most common motives of reluctancy that have always slowed the acceptance of elearning among faculty. The typical osmotic process between the activity as a scholar and the activity as a teacher - on which the high apprenticeship researcher/student in HE is based - could be even improved in the perspective of an open approach.
In addition I think Terry raised an important issue of social comittment by faculty when planning his ‘open’ action after he will be retired: keeping on spreading and popularizing your own expertise and knowledge.

However, to date I’m afraid the open approach belongs to prominent scholars (individual innovators?), experts in subject fields as new media and education. What is it happening in other disciplinary areas? Can a young researcher afford an open approach on his/her own? Instead, couldn’t he/she be penalized by a still conservative context? Maybe I look at the issue from my local, Italian HE context, in which also PHD students "belong" to a reserved circle headed by one or more scholars.
I wander how many generations it will take to change the rules of the academic “game”. Drivers and barriers should be investigated to give directions for a future policy and start the change process on a large scale.  Grainne, I find your ‘elearning policy/practice framework’ inspiring to plan change also on the other side of the coin of the  Web 2.0 faculty.

Gráinne Conole
11:19am 23 September 2009

Martin Weller has set up a related interesting cloud on openess 

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