There’s no doubt that next to edtech, OER is one of the hottest topics when it comes to classroom materials. A new survey from TES Global says that three in four U.S. teachers say open educational resources are used more often than textbooks. In an interview with Education Dive, Randy Wilhelm, founder and CEO of Knovation, discusses the challenges of using OER and offers advice on how schools can set up their teachers for success with it.
According to Wilhelm, one of the biggest challenges is organizing the content and making sure it’s easily accessible to teachers throughout the school or district. This means that the content has to be able to exist on a common platform or management system. Another common hurdle is making sure that you not only have quality content but that it’s being maintained.
Everyone knows there is ample OER on the web to instruct virtually any class, but finding quality OER is entirely more difficult than districts anticipated. Additionally, districts further into their use of OER content have discovered that maintaining the content chosen is in and of itself a challenging task. With around 1 of 5 pieces of OER having some kind of dead link problem within a year, the turnover of content is overwhelming and causes teachers to not trust that the content will be available [when] needed.
When asked how districts can avoid the common pitfalls of OER, Wilhelm advises that they invest in services that will help them curate the content, analyze the quality, and make sure that the resources remain current.
Read more at “Randy Wilhelm talks OER challenges and solutions,” from Education Dive (March 11, 2016)
As part of the AAP PreK-12 Learning Group’s 2016 Content in Context conference (June 6-8), we will be exploring OER and the changing landscape of the K-12 market. Find out more.