Openness is a process that requires and benefits from critical reflection. We propose a space for participants to unearth and critically explore timely, perhaps uncomfortable questions that may not be at the surface of what we are doing as individuals or as collaborators within the Open Education Movement (OEM). We propose an unconventional, hybrid interactive workshop designed to expose difficult topics and support innovative interventions. Participants will discuss pressing ethical questions in the OEM, engaging in critical conversations that are potentially liberating, paradigm-challenging, constructive, and inspiring. Integrating virtual participants from all over the world reiterates how some voices get excluded from conversations due to financial, governmental, health, or other reasons.
Participants will listen to three provocations around issues of ethics, equity, epistemology and power within the OEM (see issues raised by King et al, 2016; Prinsloo, 2017; Robertson, 2017), and then they will be guided through a series of three questions designed to elicit discussions about the focus they choose, and how we can start to take steps towards solving those problems, thereby creating alternative futures. Specifically, we will be using the Liberating Structure activity called TRIZ: http://www.liberatingstructures.com/6-making-space-with-triz/. This activity invites participants to consider an unwanted result and what could happen to ensure that result occurs. This question is considered individually, in pairs, then in larger groups, then shared with the room (1-2-4-all process). In order to capture what is happening in the small groups, we ask participants also to write their ideas on a shared Google Doc.
The 1-2-4-all process is repeated with the next two questions:
2. What are we currently doing that resembles, in any way, what we’ve listed in number 1?
3. What steps can we take to stop doing the things listed in number 2?
This session builds continuity and dialogue across several conferences in open education. The first of these sessions was conducted at OpenEd17 with a majority North American audience and a more general question (Green, 2017); OER18 would be the second session in the series, engaging in the same critical framework but with a modified focus for a far more global audience in a UK environment. A third session is under review for OEGlobal in Delft, Netherlands, offering an opportunity to build on the conversation even further with a different audience.
Green, G. (2017). Education is Sharing [Blog]. Green Geographer. Available at: http://greengeographer.com/opened2017/. Accessed 16 November 2017
King, T., Hodgkinson-Williams, C., Wilmers, M., & Walji, S. (2016). Dimensions of Open Research: Critical Reflections on Openness in the ROER4D Project. Open Praxis, 8(2), p81-91. https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ1103938
Prinsloo, P. (2017). Some tentative provocations on #highered and social justice: Caught between the curriculum as Prozac, protest, pontification and performance. Invited presentation. Athabasca University, 23 February 2017. Available at: https://www.slideshare.net/prinsp/some-tentative-provocations-on-highered-and-social-justice-caught-between-the-curriculum-as-prozac-protest-pontification-and-performance Accessed 16 November 2017
Robertson, T. (2017). Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in Open Research and Education. [Blog] tara robertson. Available at: http://tararobertson.ca/2017/opencon/. Accessed 15 November 2017.