One of the most critical challenges confronting the effective implementation of Open Educational Practices (OEP) in the Australian higher education sector has been copyright law and the licensing of educational resources for online access (Trounson, 2012). This is because Australian copyright law currently provides less flexibility around the use of copyright material for education than the law in other jurisdictions such as the US, Canada and Singapore (Harris, 2013). Also, there has been a perceived lack of understanding of copyright and licensing for effective engagement with Open Educational Practices (Bossu, Brown, & Bull, 2014). With funding obtained via the Australian Government Office of Learning and Teaching, Swinburne University in partnership with the University of Tasmania have undertaken a two year project to understand and address these challenges.
Fundamentally, the project allowed for the bringing together of key stakeholders to gain an understanding of the broader debate around copyright law reform, licensing and the delivery of practical outcomes for teaching and learning practitioners. The project team surveyed business and teaching professionals in Australian universities and drew upon existing research into pedagogical and business methods for the creation, use and delivery of open educational online resources. There was also an examination of existing intellectual property research and government and industry reports on copyright exceptions and the digital environment. The major deliverable of the project was the development and implementation of a practical Open Education Licence Toolkit for use by Australian universities informed by the project data collected, user experience research and stakeholder testing.
This presentation will provide an overview of this two year project, including the methodology applied and some of its outcomes. In addition, it will also discuss some of the key research findings regarding the current state of play of OEP in Australian higher education in comparison to previous research of similar nature. Most importantly, this presentation will explore and demonstrate the interactive online Toolkit
that was developed to support Australian university teachers and managers to make effective business and pedagogical decisions around online education materials and services.
You can try the toolkit for yourself at http://oel.edu.au/kit4V/
Bossu, C., Brown, M., & Bull, D. (2014). Adoption, use and management of Open Educational Resources to enhance teaching and learning in Australia. Sydney: Australian Government Office for Learning and Teaching. Retrieved from http://www.olt.gov.au/system/files/resources/CG10_1687_Bossu_Report_2014.pdf.
Harris, R. (2013). Universities Australia Member Update. (33). Canberra: Universities Australia.
Trounson, A. (2012, 7 November). Copyright fears for online offerings. The Australian. Retrieved from http://www.theaustralian.com.au/higher-education/copyright-fears-for-online-offerings/story-e6frgcjx-1226511715912