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Reflections on Clint Lalonde’s Virtual Symposium Presentation

Having blogged about it before for LRNT521, it was good to watch Clint Lalonde’s talk on Open Education and Open Educational Resources. I know that it is one thing I have enjoyed about this particular program, the openness of the resources. (Not least of which not having to pay for textbooks! With a background in Open Building Automation Systems such as KNX, playing around with practical and educational open source products such as Arduino, GIMP and Ubuntu, I have always gravitated to things that are freely accessible both from a cost perspective and as a matter of principle.

One negative with this concept, however, is often the end product either takes longer to make or is of lower quality than the item it is replacing. Based on the talk, it appears that this is being minimized, at least in the BC Campus project, through texts being created by educators, rather than simply volunteers, and through the texts being peer-reviewed. Additionally, as this particular project is funded partially by the BC government, this would remove the volunteer-driven culture (and the sometimes negative connotations) that is often part of the open source software world while legitimizing the resources.

In addition to the general overview of the work done by BC Campus and others, Clint provided a condensed and to the point overview of Creative Commons, covering the majority of attributes. As I have used it in the past for work and courses, I found it very useful to hear Clint’s instructions on how to ensure attribution is done correctly, particularly in relation to Creative Commons resources. These instructions were shared via an activity captured in a Google Doc, and uses the acronym TASL (Title, Attribution, Source, License) to help users create the attribution statements. For instance, we did use some Creative Commons resources in Assignment 2 for our Theoretical Frameworks eLearning Presentation, where this would have come in handy. Thankfully, I’ve saved the instructions for future reference.

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