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Open University announces £5.65 million project to make learning material free on the internet

Open University announces £5.65 million project to make learning material free on the internet

The Open University today announced a GBP £5.65 million (US $9.9 million) project to make a selection of its learning materials available free of charge to educators and learners around the world. Supported by a grant of US $4.45 million from The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation the University will launch the website in October 2006.



100,000th file uploaded to Wikimedia Commons

100,000th file uploaded to Wikimedia Commons - The Wikimedia Foundation announced today that the 100,000th file had been uploaded to the Wikimedia Commons. The Commons is a repository of free images, sounds, and videos. Any file uploaded to the Commons is instantly available to any of the Wikimedia projects like Wikipedia, Wikinews and Wikibooks. The 100,000th file was an illustration drawn by a French Wikipedia user named Stephane Tsacas used in the article Architecture Dataflow. Tsacas manages the computer network of the Curie Institute, a research center on biology and physics in Paris.From [Edu_RSS]


H2O - "The H2O project is building an interlocking collection of communities based on the free creation and exchange of ideas. The H2O system consists of two components -- the Idea Exchange and the Rotisserie. The Idea Exchange includes all features necessary to host a course entirely on H2O, including resource (readings, notes, videos, etc) uploads and traditional, adhoc discussion boards. More interestingly, the system now facilitates the collaborative development of course syllabi, allowing project leaders not only to upload course materials to the site but also easily to browse, search, and import the materials of other projects into their own projects."... [E-Learning Centre]

Open content in UK education

Open content in UK education - SchoolForge-UK, a project devoted to open-access content and open-source tools in education, has joined the Open Source Consortium. From today's press release: 'Schoolforge-UK, the community of individuals and organisations working to implement Open Content resources in UK education has announced its affiliation with the OSC, the independent voice of the Open Source Community in Europe. Schoolforge-UK will now drive the OSC's Education Working Group, with the aim of achieving widespread adoption of Open Source solutions in UK education. According to John Ingleby, Secretary of Schoolforge-UK, "The primary aim of Schoolforge-UK is to bring together individuals and organisations that advocate the use and development of open resources for UK schools and colleges. The OSC ably represents the UK and European Open Source community and it is a natural development to work with them on this common aim."' [Open Access News]

The eGranary Digital Library [Africa]

The eGranary Digital Library [Africa] - The eGranary Digital Library provides millions of digital educational resources to institutions lacking adequate Internet access. Through a process of garnering permissions, copying Web sites, and delivering them to intranet Web servers INSIDE our partner institutions in developing countries, we deliver millions of multimedia documents that can be instantly accessed by patrons over their local area networks at no cost. [eLearnopedia]

Eduteka: integración de las TIC en ciencias sociales

Eduteka: integración de las TIC en ciencias sociales - El portal Eduteka ha iniciado la publicación de una serie de materiales sobre la integración de las nuevas tecnologías en las ciencias sociales. «En esta y en las próximas entregas ofreceremos a los docentes material que contiene planteamientos, ideas prácticas y recursos que pueden ayudarles a integrar las TIC en las disciplinas de las Ciencias Sociales que tienen mayor peso en los currículos de educación Básica y Media (historia, geografía, economía y ciencias políticas) y en aplicaciones que las interrelacionen.»

Editorial Eduteka: «Integración de las TIC en ciencias sociales».

Online Resources Repositories for Distance Learning - eLearning Europa

Online Resources Repositories for Distance Learning - eLearning Europa - Funded by Minerva Programme, the e-Resources and Distance Learning Management (eDilema) project has been carried between 2001 and 2003 to promote access to efficient methods and high quality educational resources as well as to promote the access to the be [Online Learning Update]

More on open courseware beyond MIT

More on open courseware beyond MIT -
Jason Schwartz, Schools share class info across Internet, Daily Pennsylvanian, March 4, 2005. Excerpt: 'For the last four years, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology has been pioneering a system known as OpenCourseWare, which allows any Internet user to access materials -- including lecture notes, problem sets and quizzes -- from various university courses. Although six other American universities have followed in MIT's footsteps, Penn is not planning such a move....Penn "certainly has plenty of course sites available to the public," said Ira Winston, who is the information technology executive director for the School of Arts and Sciences, the School of Engineering and Applied Science and the School of Design. Winston noted that the "fundamental difference" between schools with OCW and Penn revolves around copyright issues. Whereas all intellectual property posted on OCW sites must be cleared and paid for, Penn professors are forced to restrict public access to all online copyrighted material....Still, Penn has made other efforts to allow the public more access to its professors' research, as the recently created Scholarly Commons program allows Engineering faculty to post papers online. "The primary reason that MIT is doing (OCW) is that its leaders believe in the benefits of openly sharing educational materials and knowledge," MIT OCW Communications Manager Jon Paul Potts said....Potts added that in addition to being a "a great boost to MIT's image," OCW has brought other perks to the institution. For example, it has reduced the need for a class-shopping period because students can preview a course on OCW before registering for it. It has also been a "wonderful recruiting tool" for undergraduate and graduate students as well as young faculty eager to "get their work out there," Potts said. He cited a survey of the MIT freshman class in which 8 percent of students responded that OCW was a factor in their decision to attend MIT....Potts noted that in addition to publishing courses online, one of MIT's main goals is to spread OCW to other universities. He added that MIT would offer advice and share technology with any school wishing to embark on an OCW program.'
[Open Access News]

Open courseware beyond MIT

Open courseware beyond MIT - Jeffrey Young, 'Open Courseware' Idea Spreads, Chronicle of Higher Education, March 4, 2005 (accessible only to subscribers). Excerpt: 'When the Massachusetts Institute of Technology announced an ambitious plan to give away online materials for every course, officials wondered whether other colleges and universities would follow suit. The answer? Sort of. Nearly four years after the start of MIT's OpenCourseWare project, several colleges met to unveil their own plans to publish extensive sets of course materials -- such as syllabi, lecture notes, and quizzes -- and encourage anyone to use them freely. There is one major difference: No one other than MIT is pledging to give away every course. And most of the newcomers expect to convert only a handful of courses per year to an open format....The growth of these giveaways marks a major philosophical shift from the mid-1990s, when many colleges and professors thought they could rake in profits selling course materials online...."I'm not surprised right away that it's a little slow to take off," says Frank Mayadas, program director at the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. "Regardless of the motivation and desire, it just isn't going to take off like wildfire" because of the cost....Representatives from MIT and six other U.S. universities that are starting open-courseware projects met at MIT in February to trade tips on how to manage their projects. Representatives from Chinese universities attended as well, as did officials from, a coalition of universities in Portugal, Spain, and several South American countries that is working to translate MIT's course materials into Spanish and Portuguese. The U.S. institutions represented were the Harvard University Law School's Berkman Center for Internet & Society, the Johns Hopkins University's Bloomberg School of Public Health, Tufts University, the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor's School of Information, the University of Notre Dame, and Utah State University.' [Open Access News]

SoFIA Releases First 8 Open Content Courses

SoFIA Releases First 8 Open Content Courses - cogdogblog:

Sofia (Sharing of Free Intellectual Assets) intends to do for the community college level what MIT's Open Courseware offers for upper division courses- free, open content courses you can use in whole or part. Free with Creative Commons licensing. The first 8 courses are available from their gallery:

The pilot grant open content initiative, Sofia (Sharing of Free Intellectual Assets), was initiated in March of 2004 under the leadership of Vivian 'Vivie' Sinou, Dean of Distance & Mediated Learning at Foothill College. "Open" content refers to material that is freely available for use by faculty, students, and self-learners.

The Sofia finalists include the following content contributed by faculty from five California Community Colleges: Creative Typography, by Carolyn Brown, Foothill College; Introduction to Java Programming, Steven Gilbert, Orange Coast College; Elementary Statistics, by Susan Dean and Barbara Illowsky, De Anza College; Physical Geography, by Allison Lenkeit, Foothill College; Musicianship, by Don Megill and Dave Megill, Mira Costa College; Enterprise Network Security, by Sukhjit Singh, De Anza College and Mike Murphy, Foothill College; Web Page Authoring, Jo Anne Howell, Gavilan College; and Macromedia Flash, by Marcia Ganeles, Foothill College.

I just skimmed Web Page Authoring and found it clean, comprehensive, with not just content, but assignments, exams, and discussion areas.

Are these "learning objects"? "course objects?" Who cares what you call it, it's good stuff... and it is free.

Keep an eye on SoFIA, she's a looking gooooooood...



Wikiversity - Welcome to the Wikiversity, a free, open learning environment and research community. Online courses are being created as a form of co-operative and interactive exchange of knowledge. Wikiversity is still being designed and discussed, see some ideas about Wikiversity. Wikiversity... [Teaching an Developping Online]
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