OPEN 9600: Open Ed Policy and Leadership

6.4 BLOG & GRAPHIC | Challenges for social justice approaches

In this final assignment for OPEN 9600: Open Ed Policy and Leadership, we are asked to contribute a blog post with an accompanying graphic, image or media that express our views on the policy and leadership challenges to launching a social justice approach in complex educational contexts. We are to draw on examples from experience and support our writing with examples from course content, readings, videos, and forum discussion (forum discussion examples are noted as personal communications)

OPEN 9600 was developed by Dr. Glenda Cox and facilitated by Josie Gray. I am fortunate to learn from both leaders in the Open movement and a cohort of learners who lead open initiatives in their contexts.

My Experiences in Open Ed Policy and Leadership

My experiences in Open Education Policy and Leadership have mainly been grassroots, and awareness of them facilitated through professional development opportunities such as eCampus Ontario’s Ontario Extend program, webinars, TESS annual conferences, OTESSA, OE Global and grant support such as VLS funding by the Ontario government. I look forward to learning more about the National Advocacy Framework for Open Educational Resources in Canada at an upcoming Cross-Canada Coffee Chat (#OECCCC).

In my context, we have successfully advocated for and received support for an Open initiative to fund open educational resources (OER) development, development time, wrap-around supports, and membership in the Community College Consortium for OER (CCCOER). While not an explicit policy, many implicit signals that Open is supported. Open meets many components of the institutional strategic plan, such as student success, student focus, collaboration, inclusiveness, innovation, supporting the development of employees, and digital transformation.

Open aligns with the Principles for Responsible Management Education (PRME), of which the School of Business is a PRME champion and signatory. Atenas (2021) suggests that embedding open education in various initiatives as a component is important for the sustainability of Open because different initiatives may need a different component of what Open offers. For example, suppose we centre an open policy only on Open Educational Resources (OER) development, and people think we are only digitizing paper textbooks. In that case, we miss a whole audience who may not see the benefit of open policy for digital transformation in learning policies such as IT and education (Atenas, 2021). I suspect many will agree that with the onslaught and rapidly expanding selection of Artificial Intelligence (AI) tools now, more than ever, we need critical digital and socially just lenses (lenses that open scholars offer) involved in conversations of AI tool practices and policies.

An image of the video Interview with Javiera Atenas. The link is directly below the video and the transcript under that.

Transcript Atenas, J. (2021) Interview with Javiera Atenas [Kaltura]File]

Challenges to Launching a Socially Just Approach in Complex Contexts

If you have been following my posts previously, I spoke to the equity benefits OER provides by ensuring all learners have access to free and accessible learning resources on the first day of class and that the licensing allows for perpetual use after the course ends and for sharing with others. I have met few people who didn’t think this was a good idea. There are questions about OER quality and the level of peer review. However, the main pushback aside from lack of time is the lack of ancillary resources and whole packages that publisher resources have. The “whole” package usually includes slide decks, instructor resources, homework sites and test banks.

Could structural issues such as the precarious work of adjunct faculty taking on more teaching assignments at multiple institutions led to this lack of time to create resources? (personal communication) Even if sufficient time and support are available, has it become so normative that somehow we lost our way and now rely on these pre-packed resources that are considered superior? Williams & Werth (2021) suggest that companies have been increasingly offering what in the past would have been part of the faculty role to design, develop, and select – curriculum, course content, class activities, and assessment. For example, they reference a study by (Rawn and Fox 2018) that indicated that 60% of Canadian University Faculty acknowledged that they develop presentation materials, curricula, and ancillaries for the courses that they deliver. (Williams & Werth, 2021). So, this begs the question, is it ethical to ask learners to pay for access fees to ancillary materials developed by some faculty and not others when this development is supposed to be included in their tuition?

Do Resources Shape Pedagogy?

Consider this study by (Vinden, Flinn & Carson 2021), which suggests that pedagogy is being shaped by resources in Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET); in this context, courses are being built through the material provided by the Industry Training Authority (ITA) or pre-packaged publisher resources, and neither is considered as a good fit for meeting the needs of students.

In this post-pandemic digital landscape, with faculty burnout reported as high as 75%, how often is the curriculum built or delivered with pre-packaged commercial course materials because it saves time?  Arguably, the tech used to build these ancillary resources appears more professional than a faculty-generated explainer video. What pedagogical value is a tech-generated activity over faculty-designed instruction? I prefer to watch the certified plumber on YouTube demonstrate how to change the washer in my tap, before I try it, even if it is simple in quality. Wachter (2019) suggests that this is the time to extend beyond open licensing and place open values into the wider context of new technological development to work collaboratively with stakeholders and advise policies that include technical platforms. Fawns (2021) advocates for a collaborative approach where pedagogy and technology are entangled and collaboration between stakeholders, including students, contextualizes and unpacks the complexities.


Systemic problems and layers of complexity need to be mitigated if higher-ed is to benefit from Open Educational Practices (OEP), of which Open Educational Resources (OER) are just one. Relying on short-term funding will not sustain OPEN long-term. I agree with Atenas (2021) embedding OPEN principles into existing policies is more sustainable than a stand-alone policy that no one takes ownership of. A plan must be in place to clarify the layers of complexity and chances for misinterpretation. This means advocacy for open values at many levels of many organizations, critical examination of current practices, and support and facilitation of Open Educational Practices (OEP) and the pedagogies that underpin them. National frameworks may be helpful but are likely only one part of a strategic and necessary multi-prong approach. In my view, Open Educational Practices are necessary to ensure that we have a socially just digital transformation.


Atenas, J. (2021) OER Policy Interview with Javiera Atenas. KPU Open Education [YouTube Video]

Fawns, T., (2022) An Entangled Pedagogy: Looking Beyond the Pedagogy – Technology Dichotomy. Retrieved from Post digital Science and Education.

Vinden, S., Flinn, C., Carson, T.S. (2021), Strengthening Digital Teaching and Learning for Trades, Vocational, Education and Training Practitioners.

Watcher, N. (2019, May 1). When Open Educational Resources and platform capitalism meet. Discover Society

Williams, K., & Werth, E. (2021). A Case Study in Mitigating COVID-19 Inequities through Free Textbook Implementation in the U.S. (1).

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OPEN 9600: Open ED Policy and Leadership, Assignment 4.4.

Assignment Instructions:

In this assignment, we are asked to blog about our views on the role of collaboration in sustaining open education. By drawing on examples from our own experiences and supporting the writing through examples from course content, readings, videos, and forum discussion (forum discussion examples are noted as personal communications)

The Role of Collaboration in Sustaining Open Education

There are many examples of collaboration in open education, ranging from grassroots, such as open calls to write open educational resources (OER) collaboratively, to top-down examples, such as open policy made explicit in strategic plans (Czerniewicz, 2021. Carson, 2020). Collaboration requires support in the form of funding, such as virtual learning strategy (VLS) funding via eCampus Ontario, institutional support through funded OER creation, adaptation, and adoption and integration into courses that includes release time, short-term contracts, and wrap-around support for editing and publishing. Tlili (2020) noted that participants viewed a positive and transformational outcome when there was an institutional commitment to support collaboration. Collaboration has the potential to sustain open education, but only if that collaboration is supported financially.

My Experiences in Collaboration

I have led, supported, and participated in many multi-institutional Open Educational Resources (OER) creation projects, which led to long-term collaborations. For example, members from the original collaboration team for Building a Medical Terminology Foundation OER came back to collaborate and develop Therapeutic Communication for Health Care Administrators’ digital text and companion game simulations. A collaboration for the second edition of the first OER is now underway, based on a remixed version of the original OER. When funding is unavailable, we use components of a community model used by FemTechNet and share workload and costs across institutions (deLanghen, 2018). For example, the creators who developed Global Value Supply Chain used this approach, with the two creators supported by their institutions, working together and with facilitated integration into one OER. I recommend this approach to faculty considering adapting or developing new creations. Taking on a large project in isolation can be daunting, and working with others produces higher-quality resources. Czerniewicz (2021) suggests that when you write collaboratively, you build a community, have accountability to others, and the project remains high on the priority list. There are many positive reasons to work collaboratively on supported OPEN projects.

Challenges to Collaboration

Anyone involved in collaborative project work knows the challenges of keeping a project within scope and on time. Collaboration on open projects is no different. I wonder if they are more challenging since many open projects rely on funding, often with short timelines. Utilizing a community model means there must be time allocated to consensus building, and often the funding due dates do not allow for the time it takes to build consensus well. deLanghen (2018) found that community building was an essential part of keeping open education sustainable because it connected the values of open with the needs of stakeholders.

In this course, we discussed how open collaboration means viewing collaboration from a social justice lens, asking us to examine our practices critically and determine who has been excluded from our open projects and how we can be inclusive moving forward (personal communications, 2023). Open collaboration as defined in our course material, means more people and diverse people are included in the project (de Langen, 2018). The feminist ideology used by community groups such as FemTechNet works toward making the invisible visible and ensuring equity in workload (deLanghen, 2018). Open collaboration requires funds to ensure people are fairly compensated for their work, form partnerships with other institutions, and allow time for consensus building and recruitment of diverse perspectives.

Open collaboration does not guarantee adoption. It is essential that before writing starts, learning outcomes are agreed upon, matched to the course outlines from participating institutions, and that the people who make the decisions on adopting course materials are included in the project decisions (personal communication, 2023). Measuring the impact of OER development through adoption for the funders of OER projects is a challenge. Wepukhulu, 2021 noted in her interview that the platform used for the African Storybook project could not measure downloads. Since the storybooks are free, it is challenging to track how many children read them (Wepukhulu, 2021). Much like Wepukhulu (2021) noted, we do not have effective ways to report and measure OER adoptions because they are free for students, usage stats are not calculated through sales, and much of that work is done manually.


Supported collaboration has the potential to sustain open education but it is not without its challenges. Sustainable funding models that go beyond one-time lump sum support, include impact measurement tools and compensate people fairly from conception to adoption including integration into courses, will lead to the greatest chance for long-term sustainability. From my humble view, It will be important for open community groups to work collaboratively when advocating for funding models in the same way that they collaboratively generate content.


Ahmed Tlili, Fabio Nascimbeni, Daniel Burgos, Xiangling Zhang, Ronghuai Huang, Ting-Wen Chang. (2020) The evolution of sustainability models for Open Educational Resources: insights from the literature and experts. Interactive Learning Environments 0:0 pages 1-16.

Carson, B.T., (2020). Breaking barriers: understanding and removing barriers to OER use. Royal Roads University

de Langen, F. (2018). Sustainability of Open Education Through Collaboration. The International Review of Research in Open and DistributedLearning,19(5).

Wepukhulu, D. (2021) African Storybook: Interview with Dorcas Wepukhulu. [Video]. OPEN ED 9600: Open Ed Policy in Leadership. Activity 3.2, Kwantlen Polytechnic University.

Stranger-Johannessen, E., Doherty, L., & Norton, B. (2018). The African Storybook and Storybooks Canada: Digital Stories for Linguistically Diverse Children. Language and Literacy, 20(3), Article 3

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OPEN 9600 – Assignment 2.4 – The Role of Policy In Fostering Open Education

I am now in my second elective and fourth course in KPU’s Professional Program in Open Education. I chose OPEN 9600: Open Ed Policy and Leadership because I am interested in how leadership and policy advance the Open Education movement. In this first assignment, we are asked to draw on examples from our experiences and support our writing with examples from the course content.

To date, my advancing Open efforts have been primarily focused on Open Educational Resources (OER) development, adaptation, and adoption while sprinkling seeds of other Open Educational Practices (OEP) and the pedagogies that underpin them. For example, co-creation with learners for assessment and the inclusion of learners’ voices in their curriculum via classroom learning resources. An equal amount of time has been spent gaining buy-in from multiple stakeholders for the inclusion of OER in their work. Most are interested in participating. The piece that is missing is pulling them all together into a collaborative effort.

When I started in the Open movement, there was, and frankly still is, a focus on equity through affordability, meaning that by providing free learning resources for the classroom, everyone has their resources the first day. No one is left behind because they cannot afford the commercial textbook. Multiple studies demonstrate that OER adoption increases retention, learner success, and the likelihood that learners will sign up for another Zero Textbook Cost (ZTC) course (Open Education Group, 2020). This is important for learners, and the impacts can be quantified through textbook cost savings.

Equity through affordability is not enough to sustain the Open movement in the long term, and we risk losing the transformational benefits that engaging in open educational practices provides. Hodkings-Williams and Trotter’s (2018) view from a social justice lens suggest that the adoption of OER can be an “ameliorative” response making a remedial reform to an injustice (OER provides a free textbook to everyone) but to be truly transformational, a critical examination to analyze if unjust practices are reinforced in OER is needed. Moving beyond affordability and inviting diverse representation of stakeholders to critically reflect on open educational practice integration in classrooms and resources, is, in my view, an aspect that is needed for the long-term sustainability of OER, and a differentiator from commercialized learning resources. The challenge is it is not easy to quantify.

In my advocacy presentations for OER integration, I have noted a gap in bringing people together for collaboration. Initially, meetings were held with working groups, but due to time constraints, these groups were not nurtured in a way that might have led to advocacy for institutional Open policy sooner. Skidmore & Provida (2019) advocate for an institutional steering committee with members from varying departments to broaden impact. Cox & Trotter (2016) propose that institutional policy for open must consider the political, cultural, and context of an institution for OER efforts to advance. Drawing on change-management theory, Kotter (2012) proposes that changes in organizations require building a guiding coalition, forming a strategy, and then enlisting a group of people who will pursue that common goal. A step towards a formalized open policy requires bringing together diverse stakeholders into one working group to pursue this goal.


Cox, G., & Trotter, H. (2016). Institutional Culture and OER Policy: How Structure, Culture, and Agency Mediate OER Policy Potential in South African Universities. The International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 17(5).

Hodkings-Williams & Trotter, H., (2018) A Social Justice Framework for Understanding Open Educational Resources and Practices in the Global South. Journal of Learning for Development, 5(3), 204-224.

Kotter, J.P. (2012) Leading Change. Harvard Business Review Press. ISBN 9781422186435

Open Education Group. (2020). The Review Project. Retrieved from Open Education Group:

Skidmore, J.M. A Place for Policy: The Role of Policy in Supporting Open Educational Resources and Practices at Ontario’s Colleges and Universities. Retrieved from

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OPEN 9400: Open Educational Technologies

I am now in Week 2 of OPEN 9400: Open Educational Technologies. This is one of three electives in KPU’s Professional Program in Open Education. I chose this course because this topic is not a strength of mine. My work in OER has been largely on end-user-friendly programs built for people who don’t code.

You can’t work in OPEN or even live in our current technology-saturated world without realizing how little we understand about the long-term implications of not understanding what goes on behind the applications (that we use daily) on our long-term viability as individuals or as a people. I mean, it is all doom and gloom, right? If you believe the hype, Artificial Intelligence (AI) will take over. I suspect it will change how we live, work, and educate. I mean, it already has. Don’t worry, I didn’t use ChatGpt to write this blog post, but I could have. So, with that in mind, I thought this was a good elective to take.

2.4 Assessment: The Bigger Picture

In this first assignment, we are asked to reflect on two weeks of personal reflections, course readings and a list of questions. We are to consider the bigger picture, including the social, community, and sustainability of open educational technologies.

The open software I primarily use to develop Open Educational Resources (OER) is Pressbooks and H5P, either with the Pressbooks plug-in or eCampus Ontario H5P studio. This blog post is written using the WordPress application on Domain of One’s Own. As the Reclaim Hosting site described, “Domain of One’s Own is a fully-featured Reclaim Package for your Team, Organization, or Institution.”

These applications are free open-source software (FOSS) which means that the code is available to be distributed, adapted, and fix bugs by anyone who wants and has the ability to do so (Wilson, n.d). Wilson (n.d) proposes that making code open source increases profiles, frees up resources for improvements, and is one way to expand quickly into the market. Aside from those benefits, companies make money by offering various support options for content developers like me or for institutions that would prefer to pay a subscription fee rather than in-house tech support (Thé, 2016). 

What all of the FOSS (that I use) have in common is that I was introduced to them through eCampus Ontario initiatives. eCampus Ontario is the Ontario Online Learning Consortium, a non-profit funded by Ontario institutions to advance technology in education and digital learning environments (eCampus Ontario, 2023). They are supported at least in part by eCampus Ontario, my own institution, and I pay a small fee for the Domain each year.

What I like about Pressbooks, H5P, and WordPress is that they are easy to use for people with little to no experience with coding. Khale (2008) proposed five open technology design principles: access, agency, ownership, participation, and experience. Since the applications are easy to use, they meet the design principles of access, and I enjoy using them, so my experience as an end-user is pleasant. Since I am able to develop my own content and share it with others, I have agency in what I create and ownership as I choose the creative commons license that I apply to my OER creations. I am able to use the technologies with other faculty and learners, and so they also meet the design principle of participation.

eCampus Ontario regularly asks for participation and feedback on the new technologies they support. Engagement with the community occurs through conferences, webinars, and surveys. They offer pilot programs where institutions can have limited supported licenses for trial use. Then feedback is sought before a member institution decides on a purchase. Support is provided to educators and institutions in implementation, use, and feedback.

I am fortunate to live in Ontario and have a consortium such as eCampusOntario that supports individuals and institutions with FOSS applications. I think a level of sustainability is provided by introducing FOSS applications, supporting their implementation in institutions, and consulting with the community on what is needed.


eCampus Ontario (2023) About eCampusOntario: committed to the evolution of teaching and learning. eCampus Ontario.

Khale (2008). Designing Open Educational Technology, Opening Up Education: The Collective Advancement of Education through Open Technology, Open Content, and Open Knowledge pp. 27 – 75 Opening Up Education: The Collective Advancement of Education through Open Technology, Open Content, and Open Knowledge (

Thé, D (2016). What is Open Source? Your phone probably runs it! (with LEGO). [YouTube Video file].

Wilson, S. (n.d) Open Source in higher education: how far have we come? The Guardian Open source in higher education: how far have we come? | Universities | The Guardian

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Open Education Resources & Pedagogies OPEN 9200

6.4 Assessment: Multimedia

I am a little late blogging out this final assignment reflection for OPEN 9200, but it is December and better late than never, right?

This is the second course in KPU’S Professional Program in Open Education. The OPEN 9200 course was developed by Dr. Karen Cangialosi and facilitated by Dr. Carlos C. Goller. I am grateful to learn from such experienced leaders in Open Education.

In this final reflective assignment, we were required to create a 10-minute recorded presentation in a digital format on open science, open data, or open access.

Inspired by Autumn Wade’s Monday Dose of Sunshine events, I created a journaling activity for the assessment. Autumn facilitates journaling events most Mondays, they are free, and I find them an energizing way to start the week. I created a PowerPoint presentation, recorded it using Screencast-O-Matic, uploaded it to YouTube, and adjusted the captions.

Participate in the Journaling Activity by Watching the Video Below

The video and the slides are licensed CC-BY-NC-SA so feel free to re-purpose them for your context.


Bothello, J. & Roulet, T.J. (2018) The Imposter Syndrome, or the Mis-Representation of Self in Academic Life. Journal of Management Studies. Wiley Online Library

Nielson, M. (2011) Open science: Michael Nielsen at TEDxWaterloo. TedxTalks

What is Open Data (2021) What is Open Data? The Open Data Handbook. The Open Knowledge Foundation.

Open Education Resources & Pedagogies

OPEN – 9200

I am now in Week 4 of the second course of KPU’s Professional Program in Open Education. If you haven’t checked it out yet, I highly recommend it.

In this second course, we have been exploring concepts around OER & associated pedagogies. I have been involved in OER work since about 2018. Although many of the open practices have been part of my personal teaching pedagogy for many years. I did not think about them as OPEN. Still, definitions that are challenging for me to describe to others are the differences between Open Educational Practices and Open Educational Pedagogy.

Cronin (2019) posits that Open depends on the context and is continually negotiated. DeRosa and Jhangiani (2018) describe open pedagogy as a point where multiple educational, technology, and social justice theories come together to inform praxis and are negotiated and constantly in revision. In a simple definition with layers of complexity, I am leaning towards describing Open Educational Pedagogies as a group of pedagogies that combine to underpin the principles of Open Educational Practices. This is congruent with my experience of unknowingly using Open Educational Practices in my teaching pedagogy before I came to think about OPEN as its own discipline.

The assignment that I am sharing today is the accumulation of two projects. I like how it was scaffolded with the first project asking us to think about future aspirations for a future OER project, an annotated bibliography, and a connection to social justice, racial equity or cultural relevance. The annotated bibliography was helpful and, moving forward, something I will do for all my writing projects. Describing the license for each reference solidified my understanding of the creative commons licenses and how I could utilize them in Assignment 4.3: Assessment: Open Pedagogy Plan.

Assignment 4.3 Assessment: Open Pedagogy Plan

This assignment is a plan for a renewable assignment specifically for: Voices from the Community: Enhancing Therapeutic Communication for Health Care Administrators OER project in development. However, the instructions could be repurposed and utilized for other disciplines beyond Therapeutic Communication for Health Care Administrators. Please see below the renewable assignment opportunity. I welcome your comments and feedback.

Renewable Assignment Opportunity: Voices from the Community: Enhancing Therapeutic Communication for Health Care Administrators.


In February 2022, Therapeutic Communication for Health Care Administrators Digital Textbook and companion Game Simulations were published. The projects were made possible with funding from the Government of Ontario and through eCampus Ontario’s support of the Virtual Learning Strategy. A new companion resource project is in development, and you may be interested in contributing.

This project is an opportunity to expand upon the Therapeutic Communication for Health Care Administrators collection by inviting educators and learners to share what they would find helpful (when communicating with Health Care Administrators) based on their experiences, cultural expectations, and differing abilities. Health Care Administrators are often the first person that people seeking health care communicate with. That initial communication can influence the success of people seeking health care will have their needs met (Carter, Rutherford, Stevens, 2020).

The Invitation

We invite educators preparing learners for roles as Health Care Administrators to incorporate this project opportunity as a renewable assignment in their classes. A renewable assignment is an assignment, activity, or task where learners are invited to license and share their work in the open (Katz & Van Allen, n.d.). This differs from disposable assignments, where an assignment is submitted, graded, and rarely shared (Wiley, 2013).

Learners must understand Creative Commons’ licensing options and have the choice to not share publicly or openly license their assignment without peer pressure and with no fear of it impacting their grades. Cronin (2019) posits that open is complex; by providing choices when people will share their work, we nurture digital literacy as people consider the implications of sharing their work for themselves. Katz & Van Allen (n.d.) suggests a class discussion with learners about open sharing with options for sharing or not. We recommend inviting your institution’s copy-right and creative commons library specialist(s) to discuss licensing options and answer questions.

The Goals of the Project:

  • Create opportunities for learners to have their lived experiences validated, learn from other learners, and then apply what they have learned in the context of their role as Health Care Administrators.
  • Provide opportunities to hear from more voices with greater representation than was possible in the first publishing of Therapeutic Communication for Health Care Administrators.
  • Maintain a dynamic resource utilizing the Pressbooks Publishing platform where contributions are updated regularly, and that resource becomes part of the Therapeutic Communication for Health Care Administrators collection.  

The Value Proposition:

This renewable assessment opportunity is one example of integrating open educational practices with social justice principles. Utilizing Lambert’s (2018) comparison chart, we propose that this project is a form of redistributive justice providing a free resource to those that need one, recognitive justice because it will include diverse experiences, and representational justice as the project will facilitate equal opportunities for sharing and validating experiences for those that may not otherwise have opportunities to do so. These principles align with the importance of enhancing therapeutic communication for health care administrators because people seeking health care are from the same diverse populations as learners and educators.

Project Resources:

Project Instruction Template Example


To learn more about the project and how you and your learners can participate, please reach out to Kim Carter through email:


Carter, K., Rutherford, M., & Stevens, C. (2022) Welcome. Therapeutic Communication for Health Care Administrators

Cronin. C. (2019). Open education: Walking a critical path. In D. Conrad, & P. Prinsloo (Eds.), Open(ing) Education: Theory and Practice. Leiden: Brill.

DeRosa, R., & Jhangiani, R. (2018). Open pedagogy. In Open pedagogy notebook (CC BY 4.0).

Katz, S., & Van Allen, J. (n.d.) Evolving into the Open: A Framework for Collaborative Design of Renewable Assignments. Open Pedagogy Approaches. Retrieved from Evolving Into the Open: A Framework for Collaborative Design of Renewable Assignments – Open Pedagogy Approaches (

Lambert, S. R. (2018). Lambert, S. R. (2018). Changing our (Dis)Course: A Distinctive Social Justice Aligned Definition of Open Education. Journal of Learning for Development5(3), 225-244.

Wiley, D (2013) What is Open Pedagogy? Improving Learning.

6.3 Assignment Two: Applying A Critical Approach

Theory and Philosophy of Open Education (OPEN9100) Final Assignment Summary of Instructions:

Produce a list of design principles or key considerations (by drawing on course readings) that could support the adoption of Open Educational Practices (OEP) for more equitable approaches to teaching and learning.

Situating Myself

My set of key considerations is situated as a new administrator leading OER development, creating ongoing processes and resources to grow and guide OER creation at a higher-ed institution.  For me, this includes Open Educational Practices (OEP) and, in the context of this assignment, focuses on open practices that can provide equitable approaches to learning and teaching.

Why Learning Before Teaching?

I use learning before teaching intentionally because long before I knew about constructivism and this approach to teaching, I always thought that the teacher is not the only person that can contribute to knowledge-making. For me, transformative learning occurs when the person named teacher/professor/instructor actively engages with the people named learners to co-construct meaning, learn from, and teach each other. Bali M. et al. (2020, para 6) propose that a constructivist approach ensures relevancy while fostering learning communities.

Key Considerations and Related Questions


My first two key considerations focus on Representation. For me, this means diverse perspectives are included by inviting the participants to OER work. Representation also applies to the content of OER material that goes beyond images and includes the representation of voices as active participants in OER development and processes. Veletsianos, G. (2020) argues that we can not assume that Open is inherently equitable and that we must scrutinize our practices, or we risk missing out on the equity benefits espoused by open advocates and, worse, may perpetuate inequities. Diversifying the content of OER to include representation of a mix of people supports equity in education, and it can be one example of Recognitive Justice (marginalized and underrepresented people are seen and legitimized) and Representational Justice (marginalized and underrepresented people speak for themselves) (Lambert S. & Czerniewicz, L., 2020).

  1. Representation in participation in open initiatives
    • What opportunities and resources are available to invite participants from under-represented and marginalized groups into OER/OEP initiatives?
    • How do we identify and support the people who have been under-represented and marginalized so they can participate in a way that is meaningful to them?
  2. Representation in OER adoption, adaptation, and creation
    • When supporting the adoption of OER into courses, how do we support the labour of resource review to ensure multiple perspectives are represented in the course materials?
    • When supporting the adaptation and creation of OER for course material, how do we embed (in our workflow) the inclusion of marginalized and underrepresented people?

Open Educational Practices: Open Sharing

My next key considerations focus on asking people to share openly. Cronin (2017) posits that it is important to support learners and faculty in navigating the tensions that open sharing has with privacy concerns. Singh (2015) suggests that we miss people’s perspectives when we do not have safe and inclusive spaces. It has been my own experience that it depends on the context when I decide when and how much I will share. I have witnessed the hesitancy of others to share what I perceive as fear of judgment. Still, I must continually scrutinize that perception because it is an assumption and is not the only reason people hesitate or do not share.

  1. Assess the risk of open sharing
    • What processes are in place or need to be put in place to address risks that open sharing may cause for people
  2. Open is not fully open or fully closed.
    • Have we created options for people to participate safely, and how will they and we know?
  3. Has training been provided for people to make an informed decision about open sharing?
    • Licensing training
    • Social media training
    • Time to evaluate what it means to share openly

The Digital Divide

Open Educational Resources (OER) are largely digital and often require internet access to utilize interactive components and a device to download or read online. When those options are not available, then access to a printer or printing company to make hard copies is needed. A large part of my work around OER has been ensuring learners have access to their learning material at the beginning of a course. Lambert’s (2018) example of OER being a form of Redistributive Justice ( providing learners with free educational resources when they may not have been able to afford them) aligns with my OER work. However, understanding that socio-economic conditions may preclude learners from accessing digital resources, even free ones, is another barrier for my consideration list.

  1. How do we ensure offline options are available when people cannot access the internet and/or devices?
    • Are print copies made available?
    • Are downloads on devices made available?
    • Are these alternative formats accessible?


Bali, M., Cronin, C., & Jhangiani, R. S. (2020). Framing Open Educational Practices from a Social Justice Perspective. Journal of Interactive Media in Education2020(1), 10. DOI:

Cronin, C. (2017) Open Education, Open Questions. Open at The Margins.

Lambert, S. and Czerniewicz, L., 2020. Approaches to Open Education and Social Justice Research. Journal of Interactive Media in Education, 2020(1), p.1. DOI:

Lambert, S. R. (2018). Changing our (Dis)Course : A Distinctive Social Justice Aligned Definition of Open Education. Journal of Learning for Development

singh, s. (2015) The Fallacy of Open. Open at The Margins.

Veletsianos, G, (2020). Open educational resources: expanding equity or reflecting and furthering inequities?. Education Tech Research Dev 69, 407–410 (2021).

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This first course in the KPU Professional OPEN program has me looking forward to Open Educational Resources and Pedagogies (OPEN-9200) starting Monday. I wish to thank Irwin Devries for his thoughtful audio reflections, which solidified my learning. For my co-learners, thoughtful posts and prodding questions made me dig deeper in critically evaluating my assumptions about my work in OPEN.

Forward for the Blog

I am currently enrolled in the inaugural cohort at Kwantlen Polytechnic University’s Professional Program in Open Education. I plan to publish my assignments in the OPEN as part of my own reflective practice but also for critical and respectful reflection from the OPEN community that I value. So thank you in advance. The following reflection is related to the first-course Theory and Philosophy of Open Education (OPEN 9100)

2.4 Assignment 1: Defining OPEN

Open Education is at its foundation a social justice movement with a shared goal to re-examine educational practices by engaging collaboratively with others. That engagement seeks to understand the contexts and lived experiences of others so that together meaningful changes to accepted educational practices can be made to improve people’s daily lives.

Kim Carter, October 2022

My definition of Open Education is based on my fundamental belief that quality education should be available to all people. This aligns with UNESCO’s Sustainability Development Goals (SDGs) and specifically #4 Quality Education for all (UNESCO, 2022). The challenge to my definition is to determine what specifically are the shared goals of such a complex topic. Suppose a proponent of Open Education wants to engage collaboratively with others to make meaningful change. In that case, a critical examination of what is shared experiences combined with the assumptions that the proponent is bringing to the collaboration is necessary.

Cronin (2019) challenges open advocates to critically examine the underpinnings of idealistic and utopian beliefs of Open Education or run the risk of exacerbating inequalities. With this thought in mind, I find it helpful to think about co-construction as a tool for meaningful collaboration. Co-construction engages people in a way in which we can begin to understand the contexts in which each other lives. For example, if I am at a collaboration meeting and people share their goals, I may have a surface understanding of what they may need. Only through critical self-reflection of the assumptions I bring and building trust through activities such as co-construction of knowledge may I truly begin to understand the contexts in which other people live and how their worldviews may differ from my own. Cronin (2019) supports this thought by indicating that OPEN is personal, and people re-examine and negotiate with themselves when they will share in the open and when they will not. Cronin (2019) also refers to the work of Jesse Stommel in co-constructing OER with learners in ways that are different than traditionally accepted practices and suggests that this is an opportunity for collaborators to think differently and challenge accepted norms.

A helpful reference from my co-learners was that of Lambert (2018 – para 10), who proposes that social justice successes are measured by their ability to provide resources to those that need them, recognize gender and cultural differences, and ensure that their voices are represented. I found that these three descriptions of justice helpful as a framework for discussion and co-construction for finding shared goals within the context of those that I am collaborating with. While the SDGs and Open Education remind us that Open Education is a Global social justice movement. I think that my definition also applies to my local context and within my own institution. It has been my experience that all people wish to be valued and understood, and engaging collaboratively to seek to understand what educational changes others need to improve their daily lives is important.


Cronin. C. (2019). Open education: Walking a critical path. In D. Conrad, & P. Prinsloo (Eds.), Open(ing) Education: Theory and Practice. Leiden: Brill.

Lambert, S. R. (2018). Changing our (Dis)Course : A Distinctive Social Justice Aligned Definition of Open Education. Journal of Learning for Development

UNESCO (2022). Leading SDG 4 – Education 2030. UNESCO Education transforms lives. 

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