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Reflexive task 4: Phil and Mike

Page history last edited by Anna Gruszczynska 9 years, 2 months ago

Mike has looked at jorum and the other main repositories and identified a lack of criminological material particularly that of an introductory nature, so has decided to repurpose a module Crime, Justice and Society worth 40 credits. When I did the Exploring OERs task for this project I also found resources for ‘criminology’ to be scarce and we both expressed surprise at this non-finding considering the extent of the discipline’s presence in the undergraduate curriculum. The release of Crime, Justice and Society therefore seems a prudent step although the problems Mike identified with regard to the use of visual images counterbalances some of the benefits. Their copyright provisions prevent their inclusion in an OER and therefore it will not be possible to convey the full flavour of face-to-face lecturing. Whether universities are currently breaching copyright rules in the widespread use of visual images in their VLEs was something neither of us professed to know.

A further barrier to the use of images was raised by Mike’s concern for the effects they could have on a student who was unaccompanied by a lecturer guiding their viewing by providing context and rationale. Therefore even if the legalities were overcome there could still be a significant difference between what is appropriate to distribute in an OER and the material that is provided in the lecture theatre.

Mike’s discussions with his students regarding OERs provided useful information for considering the problems in their cascade. The dominance of Blackboard was his main observation of the students’ internet use and therefore unsurprisingly, like my own students, they were unaware of OERs. Practical problems such as broadband access in halls of residence were also raised and whilst this source was a different form of inaccessibility, it repeated the problem identified by some of my students. However, despite these obstacles the Teesside students were said to be keen on using smartphones thereby supporting the views of others on this project.

The difficulties in getting staff to engage with OERs were discussed and it was felt this could be a significant obstacle in their cascade. The demands on staff time were acknowledged as being the major problem. A number of papers at OER2011 identified lecturers as being the driving force behind the use of OERs and this barrier therefore has to be recognised as a major concern.   

 

 

 

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