Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Activity 10 Applying sustainability models #h817open

I consider a number of open education initiatives and after a brief look at their web sites attempt to determine which of the three funding models, MIT, USU and Rice, proposed by Wiley in his OECD report are being used.

  • Change MOOC: the facilitators are the cMOOC kings who seemed to provide their time gratis with the apparent help of volunteers. Certainly the 30 or more speakers, one per week, provided their input freely and to great affect. It would seem that the Rice model is being used here.
  • Coursera: set up as a private company but still offering free MOOCs prepared by a large consortium of high-profile universities around the world but with most being in the USA. Each MOOC is prepared professionally with the cost met by member institutions. The total team size of full-time equivalent staff is likely in the thousands. Coursera presents and operates as a single entity so I would put them in the MIT category.
  • Jorum: funded by JISC (a UK charity) collects and shares learning and teaching materials allowing for reuse and repurposing.  Although the materials served are free for reuse Jorum is supported by full-time professional staff so again is more akin to the MIT model. Since the OERs in the Jorum repository are obviously provided by a wide range of 'volunteer' contributors across the globe it could be argued this is like the USU model as well.
  • OpenLearn: operated entirely by the Open University UK to provide MOOCs to the world. This would seem to definitely conform to the MIT model.
From the chosen open education initiatives it would appear the MIT model carries much weight. Wiley's model categories seem a sensible spectrum but it is obvious elements from two of more of his models are mixed in practice.