Archive for the ‘March 2008’ Category


Hewlett approves OER grants

March 31, 2008

On March 17, 2008 Trustees of the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation approved $10,075,000 in Open Educational Resources grants including:  

Foothill-De Anza Community College District (Los Altos Hills, CA) to plan and pilot the Community College Open Textbook Project ($330,000 over 1 year with additional collaborative funding from Improving Educational Outcomes in California).


Obsolete Skills for College

March 29, 2008

Obsolete Skills for College Faculty

  • Operating a mimeograph machine
  • Washing blackboards and clapping erasers
  • Loading slides into a slide projector
  • Making transparencies
  • Calculating grades by hand
  • Adoption of expensive textbooks

Obsolete Skills for College Students

  • Calculating with a sliderule
  • Sharpening pencils
  • Washing blackboards and clapping erasers
  • Communicating with the professor only during office hours
  • Carrying a backpack full of expensive textbooks
  • Standing in line for textbook buyback
  • Buying expensive textbooks

Other Obsolete Skills…

New Skills for College Faculty

  • Tweeting
  • Blogging
  • Pinging
  • Texting
  • Social bookmarking
  • Document sharing
  • Podcasting
  • Open education
  • Open Textbook adoption

This posting was inspired by an idea suggested by Robert Scoble.

Contribute your own Obsolete Skills by posting a Comment.


New Course: OER

March 8, 2008

Discover alternatives to expensive textbooks. 

Embrace open education.  Enroll now!

Introduction to Open Educational Resources
LINC 215.01W
One Quarter Unit
April 7 – June 12

Foothill College

Instructor:  Dr. Judy Baker, Director of Community College Consortium for Open Educational Resources and Dean of Foothill Global Access

Delivery:  fully online via ETUDES NG (no on-campus attendance required)

Description:  This course is an introduction to Open Educational Resources (OER) and the use of open learning materials for teaching.  OER can be used as an alternative and/or supplement to publishers’ textbooks. 

Rediscover the delights of teaching and learning.  This course experience is designed to be participant-centered and dynamic.  The flow and direction of the course depends on the learning needs of the participants.

Participants in this course will be encouraged to nurture their own Personal Learning Network about the use of open educational resources (OER) or open content.  Collectively, participants will build the knowledge and skills necessary to find, adapt, repurpose, create, and share accessible OER.

Your Open Educational Resources Personal Learning Network will address –

  • Best practices and case studies
  • Copyright and fair use issues
  • Sources and repositories of open content learning materials in various disciplines
  • Technical issues regarding accessibility of open learning content materials
  • Uses of Creative Commons licenses
  • Tools and standards available to develop, organize and disseminate open content learning materials
  • Searching techniques for identifying open content learning materials
  • Professional collaboration strategies and campus implementation of OER
  • Criteria for assessing the suitability of open content learning materials for use various disciplines
  • Lesson plan development than incorporates use of the identified open content learning materials

Registration and Enrollment


Composing free and open OER course

March 5, 2008

The “Composing free and open online educational resources” Wikiversity course began on Monday.  Follow along as the course progresses at

The course introduces participants to the main concepts, historical, and philosophical ideas related to open education resources. The participants will learn to create and participate in projects producing free and open educational resources.


OER Commons Explained

March 2, 2008

Dr. Lisa Petrides, President of the Institute for the Study of Knowledge Management in Education explains the OER Commons website.

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