User:Jtneill/Grants/Student-authored open textbooks 2010/Proposal
This is an updated version of the successful "Student-authored open textbooks as learning and assessment exercises" Blended Learning Hothouse, UC application.
Projects must clearly address the criteria detailed below.
|Faculty||Faculty of Health|
|Discipline||Discipline of Psychology|
|Project Name||Student-authored open textbooks as learning and assessment exercises|
|Short description, (25 words)||This project will develop a wiki-based methodology and open education pedagogy to support students in collaboratively authoring open textbook chapters as an assessment exercise.|
|Criteria Addressed, (does your project meet these criteria?)||This project addresses five of the six Hothouse 2 criteria (see bold):
Knowledge of University structures and decision making procedures
|Full Description, (1000 words max)||The problem – Three higher education needs
This project address three higher education needs (see Figure 1).
The higher education industry should at least agree on one thing when it comes to textbooks: the current system for publishing, distributing and pricing is rather broken. The challenge lies in reimagining the textbook so that faculty construct the right set of learning materials that engages their students in deep learning, without bankrupting them. (Bell, 2010)
Commercial, restricted textbooks are ubiquitously used in higher education. However, there are significant issues with this approach including high cost, copyright restriction, limited formats, lack of localisation, and inequitable accessibility (Bell, 2010). Open textbooks are a promising alternative, but there are relatively few available (Cervantes, 2010; Holland, 2008; Make textbooks affordable, 2010; Reynolds, 2010).
Assessment for the future
Universities face substantial change in a rapidly evolving global context. The challenges of meeting new expectations about academic standards in the next decade and beyond mean that assessment will need to be rethought and renewed. (Boud, 2010)
There is a need to develop innovative, learning-relevant assessment methodologies in higher education (Assessment Futures, 2010). In particular, assessment exercises which generate deep learning, facilitate generic skill development, and which have real-world applicability are desirable. The proposed textbook chapter authoring exercise exhibits seven out of the eight suggested Assessment Futures elements:
Collaborative online writing skills Once basic academic writing skills have been developed (e.g., through writing essays on set topics), higher education students should develop a capacity to write effectively in collaborative, online environments and to undergo peer-review.
The theory – Three pedagogical elements To guide the design of the student-authored open textbook learning and assessment exercise, aspects of three pedagogical theories have been used (see Figure 2).
Guided experiential learning (guided learning by doing and reflecting; Dewey, 1938/1963; Kolb, 1984)
Authoring an online textbook chapter and creating an accompanying 5 min. multimedia presentation are novel, challenging exercises. By directly encountering unfamiliar problems, with guided support and reflection, students develop their writing and communication skills and also confidence and capability in their problem solving and project management skills.
Networked learning (learning through online collaboration and interactivity; Ally, 2008; Siemens, 2005)
Students are immersed in face to face networks (through small groups, tutorials and lectures) and a collaborative, networked digital environment where they share their work openly. Lectures and tutorials include guidance and peer-review exercises to facilitate chapter draft development of the chapter content. Networked learning skills (such as collaborative editing) are developed and facilitated.
Open academia (freedom and openness of knowledge and learning opportunities; Neill, 2010a, 2010b)
Open academia is a philosophy that values openness of knowledge and access to learning opportunities, with an emphasis on open education, open access, open formats and open licensing. This exercise immerses participants in an open education environment and helps them to understand the applicability of open academic practices to real world problems and tasks.
The project will support developing, describing, evaluating and disseminating a methodology and pedagogy for student-authored open textbooks as learning and assessment exercises. More specifically, the proposed project will undertake to:
The proposed project is currently underway here:
The project budget is expected to involve:
|How will this project benefit other staff and units/courses in your faculty?||Initial feedback from discussion with colleagues about the student-authored online textbook assessment exercise has been encouraging, with several staff members interested to try textbook chapter authoring exercises in their respective units. This project will help to ensure that efforts with the current experiment are reviewed, documented and shared, with generic aspects synthesised and developed further for publication and staff workshops.|