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Helen Whitehead
29 March 2011

The OER University, presented over Skype by Wayne Mackintosh, International Centre for Open Education / OER Foundation

The OER university is a virtual collaboration of like-minded institutions committed to creating flexible pathways for OER learners to gain formal academic credit. The OER university aims to provide free learning to all students worldwide using OER learning materials with pathways to gain credible qualifications from recognised education institutions. It is rooted in the community service and outreach mission to develop a parallel learning universe to augment and add value to traditional delivery systems in post-secondary education. Through the community service mission of participating institutions we will open pathways for OER learners to earn formal academic credit and pay reduced fees for assessment and credit.
The OER university concept is derived from the original etymology of "universitas magistrorum et scholarium" referring to a community of scholars. The OER university is an innovation partnership of like-minded institutions committed to creating pathways for OER learners to gain academic credit through the formal education system. As such we use the lowercase "u" to refer to the OER university collaboration. The OER university is not a formal teaching institution and does not confer degrees or qualifications -- but works in partnership with accredited educational institutions to provide credit for OER learning on the pathway to awarding credible credentials.
The OER University will

  • Enable accredited educational institutions to provide assessment and credit pathways for formal academic credit at reduced student fees, which lead to recognised credentials.
  • Offer courses and programmes based entirely on open education resources and open textbooks licensed under free cultural works approved open content licenses.
  • Implement scalable systems of volunteer student support through community service learning approaches.
  • Promote the design and teaching of courses utilising open pedagogical approaches to facilitate networked learning.
  • Use free and open source software for its administration.

Extra content

Download report:  OER University: Towards a logic model and plan for action

Visit  OER university home page  for more information and join this global innnovation partnership.

Wayne Mackintosh
23:32 on 6 April 2011 (Edited 23:36 on 6 April 2011)

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