OER based capacity building to overcome staff equity and access issues in higher education

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Carina Bossu
University of Tasmania

Julie Willems
RMIT University

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Tuesday 5 December, 11am – 11.20am
Stream 4
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Open educational resources (OER) have already impacted educational systems around the world. In higher education more specifically, it has benefited learners and educators and influenced strategic plans and policies. OER have the potential to overcome existing equity considerations for academic staff in their ongoing continuing further education, and as part of their academic professional development. This paper examines the potential of OER to build capacity of academic staff in higher education, in particular to overcome some equity and access issues. It will also examine existing activities and strategies for professional development and provide some recommendations for the academics, developers and the sector.

About the authors

Carina Bossu

Dr Carina Bossu is a Lecturer, Learning & Teaching (OEP) with the Tasmanian Institute of Learning and Teaching at the University of Tasmania. Her current work and research are primarily focused on Open Educational Resources (OER) and Open Educational Practices (OEP) in higher education, more specifically issues related to learning, teaching and professional development. Previously, she was a Research Fellow with the Distance Education HUB (DEHub) at the University of New England.

Julie Willems

Dr Julie Willems holds qualifications in Nursing, the Humanities, and Education. She has worked across the Australian education sectors, and since 2004, has specialised in higher education. Her current position is as a Senior Lecturer in RMIT University’s Learning and Teaching Academy. Julie’s research interests include the promotion of educational and digital equity as social justice issues, in addition to the media and technology of formal and informal learning (including social media). She was a recipient of the auDA Foundation’s national 2011 research grant for the i-Survive Project investigating the use of ‘back channel’ communications via mobile technologies and social media during Australian emergencies and disasters. Julie has a community focus and has actively served on a number of committees and boards over the course of her career, and is currently in her second term on the national Executive for ASCILITE (since 2015).