Open academia: Principles and practices

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Open academia: Principles and practices

Expression of interest for refereed paper for HERDSA 2011: Higher Education on the Edge (Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia), July 4-7, 2011 Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia.

Abstract[edit]

This paper argues that open academic practices provide greater benefits to society, institutions and academics than do closed practices.[1][2][3] Five principles of open academia are suggested (open access, open licensing, open formats, free software, and open governance) and discussed with case studies and examples (such as intellectual property[4], open textbooks[5], open journals[6] open education[7], and open governance[8]). Open academia applies these five principles to core areas of academic work, particularly open education[9] and open research. It is argued that universities and academia should develop capability, policy and practice to promote open access, open licensing, open file formats, and free software. Such practices help to disseminate knowledge and training, facilitate dynamic engagement with the public and stakeholders, improve overall quality, and enhance marketability. In addition, it is argued that academic, education and research institutions should demonstrate transparent governance and methodologies[10][11], a view supported by current Australian federal reforms in education.[12][13] In essence, it is argued that academia and universities should champion free and public access to knowledge, education and training, and that progress toward implementation of open academic principles should become key performance and benchmark indicators.[14][15] The biggest barriers to openism in academia are not legal or technical, but rather cultural, organisational, and psychological[16][17]. This paper outlines initiatives under way that seek to address these barriers[18] and examples of open academia that show advantages to universities such as collaboration and networking, peer review, quality improvement, commercialisation opportunities, kudos, marketing, and branding[19][20].[21][22][23][24]

Authors[edit]

  • James Neill, Assistant Professor, University of Canberra
  • Leigh Blackall, Learning Commons Coordinator, University of Canberra

Conference theme[edit]

All submissions must relate to the conference theme, "Higher education at the edge", and address one or more of the research domains:

  • Academic practice, work and identities
  • Learning, teaching, assessment and curriculum
  • Quality and standards in higher education
  • Leadership, management, governance and policy in higher education
  • Student pathways, experiences, expectations and outcome

References[edit]

  1. Blackall, L. B., & Neill, J. T. (2010). Open education and research at the University of Canberra. Presentation to the 2010 Annual Conference of Knowledge Commercialisation Australasia. 11 November 2010
  2. Neill, J. T. (2010). Going naked – Openism and freedom in academia. A presentation about open academic philosophy and practice with responses by Leonard Low, Leigh Blackall.13:30, Friday 5th March, 2010, Hothouse (1C32), University of Canberra, ACT, Australia
  3. Neill, J. T. (2010). Open academia: A philosophy of open practice. Presentation to the University of Canberra Intellectual Property (UC-IP) Mini-conference, 11th June, 2010.
  4. Blackall et al. (2010). Proposed intellectual property policy. University of Canberra.
  5. Baltzersen, R. K. (2010). Radical transparency: Open access as a key concept in wiki pedagogy. Australasian Journal of Educational Technology, 26(6), 791-809.
  6. Blackall, L. (2010). How to publish and distribute journals these days. Leigh Blackall, 13 January.
  7. Open learning and education projects can be found on Wikiversity and many more
  8. Representatives from the Wikimedia Foundation. How Wikipedia changes the way we debate, govern and teach. Center for Information Technology Policy, 7 October 2010
  9. Kinney, D. (2010). An open education primer: What you need to know about the future of post-secondary education. Unlimited Magazine.
  10. Various authors (2010). Co-creation, co-governance and peer-to-peer production of public services. A SIG on co&p2p from Aalto University, 22 October.
  11. Atkinson, R. A Letter to the editor: Defending the ERA initiative. Editorial, Australian Journal of Educational Technology, 26(6).
  12. Gillard, J. (2009). Universities Australia Conference - 4 March 2009 – speech. Universities Australia Conference, Wednesday, 4 March, 2009, Canberra, ACT, Australia.
  13. Harrison, D. (2010). My School for universities on the way. Sydney Morning Herald, 3 March.
  14. Freeculture.org (2010). Open university report cards.
  15. O'Driscoll, T. (2010). Social production as a new source of economic value creation. opensource.com, February 2010.
  16. Coddington, R. as cited by Kamanetz, A. Vast majority of professors are rather Ludditical. DIYU, 28 July 2010
  17. Bates, T. (2010). Open content and the costs of online learning. E-learning and Distance Education Resources, 25 October.
  18. Hardin, J. & Cañero, A. (2010). Faculty and student perspectives toward open courseware, and open access publishing: Some comparisons between European and North American populations. Open ED 2010 Proceedings (pp. 167-179), November 2-4, Barcelona, Spain.
  19. Blackall, L. et al. (2010). Measuring open education. Open Education Practices: A User Guide for Organisations. NZ Ministry of Education, 2009.
  20. Helsdingen,A., Janssen, B., & Schuwer, I. S. (2010). Business models in OER, a contingency approach. Open ED 2010 Proceedings (pp. 191-203), November 2-4, Barcelona, Spain.
  21. Griset, R. & Lopez, J. M. R., (2010). Use of open educational resources at the UOC. In Open ED 2010 Proceedings (pp. 144-153), November 2-4, Barcelona, Spain.
  22. Hall, R. & Winn, J. (2010). The relationships between technology and open education in the development of a resilient higher education. Open ED 2010 Proceedings (pp. 154-166), November 2-4, Barcelona, Spain.
  23. Cann, A. Open access advantage. Science of the Invisible, 19 October.
  24. Levine, A. (2009). Amazing stories of openness. Presentation to OpenEd 2009 Conference, 12 August.