OER and the Five R’s

We’ve noted before how Open Educational Resources (OER) represent a “galaxy of opportunity,” as reflected in the current library display. Let’s take a closer look at what makes them an exciting educational trend.

Photo by opensource.com CC By-SA 2.0

OER and the Five R’s

When people talk about OER, they frequently refer to the “five R’s.”

  1. Retain – the right to make, own, and control copies of the content (e.g., download, duplicate, store, and manage)
  2. Reuse – the right to use the content in a wide range of ways (e.g., in a class, in a study group, on a website, in a video)
  3. Revise – the right to adapt, adjust, modify, or alter the content itself (e.g., translate the content into another language)
  4. Remix – the right to combine the original or revised content with other material to create something new (e.g., incorporate the content into a mashup)
  5. Redistribute – the right to share copies of the original content, your revisions, or your remixes with others (e.g., give a copy of the content to a friend)”                                                                                                                                         – David Wiley, (http://opencontent.org/definition/)

These categories help to explain the purpose of using an open license for your work. Creative Commons licenses open up these possibilities, and therefore a “galaxy” of options for users – they can choose whether to use the material as is, redistribute it to students for free, translate it into another language, etc.

Remix – The most exciting R 

It’s the fifth “R” – remix – that represents the full potential of OER. “Remix” indicates that a future user can actually modify the content – as long as they give credit to the original creator.

If you’re wondering whether an item is available to “remix,” just look to the license!
CC BY is the most open Creative Commons license, because it places no limits on future use. When you see this license, it means that you, the user, can “remix” the content to your heart’s content – edit the text, add pictures, and use a portion or the whole. The only rule is that you indicate who its original creator was, by adding an attribution (we’ll look at that topic in an upcoming blog post).

We’ve Come a Long Way

Here we have a young woman do work at a computer. By the look of the monitor, the setups being used seem to be early IBM computers. These machines came in and help revolutionize the computer industry and IBM as a company.
Despite the antiques being used by the student, what she is doing is rather familiar. I would guess that she is taking a test or even better, running some kind of program or calculation. For the time, those things were great and revolutionary and cant hold a candle to a machine is lesser size and far more power.
We’ve come from having to sit in chairs craning our necks to peer at screens on bulky monitors to carrying the machine in our palms and pockets with screens that can display images equal or better than our own eyes.
and it’s all thanks to people like her. the ones that worked through the bulk to get us where we are today.
Good luck with your work and thanks for being there to get us to where we are today.

 As my last post here I would like to thank Keith for helping me during my time here in the archive and to anyone who has read any of my posts.
Thank you.

New Anime, Documentaries, and Blockbuster Films in Multimedia

"<a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/byzantiumbooks/34936852682/in/photolist-Vefv81-253cRo3-6tvSRs-7pVGxS-4hfG9e-253cRZy-2usGvP-9cphvD-5jqPsE-4MqEGd-7Vm7cu-cKZwa1-253cRw9-n1EJD-9ZGE79-23ntUFG-5t7F3Q-23ntUth-5RHnKC-6m1j8u-n1EJj-qAHvz3-23d3mXf-33MGDr-prFNqA-4MFKjk-fkqiJ-22EaejY-ntLGVE-akNPMk-8pvkTh-5Kzmpv-dDrTfj-26iLzrh-6Q7AnV-8HWsp8-bvUqz8-2FNKT6-8pvn1G-bFe9i3-aJ5wvn-8AXHtJ-9d55NS-4t8Mws-HpWM5d-22gb2j1-22nvjr3-dFa1qC-8MvJ5G-4NRvU4">Movies</a>" by <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/byzantiumbooks/">Bill Smith</a> is licensed under CC BY 2.0
Movies” by Bill Smith is licensed under CC BY 2.0

The library has recently acquired several new videos for it’s media collection. Students, faculty, and staff may borrow these DVDs and Blu-Rays for up to 1 week. Special thanks goes to the Multimedia Resource Center’s College Assistant, Anderson Uribe for finding the trailers below.
For further information contact Prof. Junior Tidal.
A Street Car Named Desire – DVD 3019

Easy Rider – DVD 3016 (Blu-Ray)

Get Out – DVD 3017 (Blu-Ray)

Moonlight – DVD 3013 (Blu-Ray)

The Grand Budapest Hotel – DVD 3015 (Blu-Ray)
https://youtu.be/1Fg5iWmQjwk Continue reading “New Anime, Documentaries, and Blockbuster Films in Multimedia”

OER Around the World

We’ve heard a lot about OER at CityTech, and there have been recent pushes to fund Open Educational Resources at CUNY and SUNY. Now, let’s take a look at OER in the worldwide context!

OER: A Worldwide Movement

UNESCO (the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization) hosted the first Global OER Forum in 2002, which lead to the Paris OER Declaration – an effort to encourage OER support at the government level.

“Global OER Logo” by Jonathas Mello is licensed under CC BY 3.0

Why this global interest? As the Slovenian education minister notes, “OER is one of the ways to make education really inclusive, accessible, and open to everyone.”

A World of Possibilities

OERAfrica is one example of a site that brings together policy, research, and links to educational content. The project is geographically-specific, devoted to “to harness OER practices in ways that resolve some of the deep-seated pedagogical challenges facing African higher education institutions.”
Another interesting project is the Living Archive of Aboriginal Languages, “a digital archive of endangered literature in Australian Indigenous languages of the Northern Territory of Australia.”

Developed under a Creative Commons license, the site hopes to integrate “collaborative research work with the Indigenous communities,” and includes full text books in languages like Djambarrpuyŋu, Golumala, and Ḻiya-galawumirr.

The Future of OER?

As we can see, there are a variety of efforts towards making content more available to a worldwide audience, and openly-licensed, as OER. In a future post, we’ll take a closer look at some of the context in which this movement developed, and critiques along the way.

News in Open Educational Resources (OER)

New OER Funding
This month, CUNY and SUNY were each awarded an additional $4 million dollars in state funding, to help contribute to the Open Educational Resources Initiative. Sources estimate that by Spring 2019, up to $28 million may be saved in textbook and materials costs. 
New OER Creation
As part of the program, some faculty are being funded to create new OER resources. Let’s look at some examples!
One recently published textbook from SUNY OER Services is Naming the Unnameable: An Approach to Poetry for New Generations, by Michelle Bonczek Evory. The text offers an introduction to the craft of poetry, with practical suggestions about starting out, as well as theoretical engagement with the concepts of play, physicality of language, and poetic form. 
Being an OER, the book is 100% free – to everyone. You can download it as a PDF or EBook format, or simply read it online.
Another example is “Foundations of Homecare, also produced by SUNY. Intended as a training resource for those aspiring to be Personal Care Assistants or Home Health Aides, the book is embedded with quizzes that track learning progress, as well as links to word definitions and concepts.
It’s interesting to note that the Creative Commons license used for this Ebook is CC BY, which is the most permissive of the licenses – the most “open.”
CC BY only requires that a user cite the original creator; future users can use the content for any purpose (commercial or non-commercial), and also “remix” the content by adding to it.
The authors may have chosen this license so that the book can be adapted as a training manual as part of a business or commercial enterprise. The Creative Commons license allows for this kind of mixed use, whereas under copyright, they would have to purchase a copy or subscription to the text. 
More OER Textbooks 
If you’d like to check out other texts being developed by SUNY, there’s a list here, with statistics about their current use.

Spotlight on an OER

Wondering about the possibilities of developing a course on the OpenLab? As part of their popular “In the Spotlight,” blog post series, the OpenLab featured an excellent OER course this week. Designed by Professor Javiela Evangelista, the class “Africana Folklore” was converted so that the syllabus, course materials, and assignments are all part of a shared, public OpenLab site.

One exciting part of the course is that students go on a field trip to the studios of Democracy Now!, in order to explore “how independent media outlets are committed to the survival of stories… that may not be highlighted in mainstream media.” As the blog post notes, this helps to “draw a contemporary parallel to the ways in which Africana Folklore ‘highlights the survival of African descendant people (and their stories) by way of oral, material and customary traditions.'”

The course assignments pair videos with readings, in order to enhance the multimedia aspect of the course, and they’re all easily accessible from any device.
Feel free to take a closer look,  here! –  Africana Folklore: AFR1130

Citations made easier

Need help with citations?
Zotero.org just launched a great new tool to help you with your citations, Zoterobib. It helps generate citations on the fly and is especially useful for webpages. Always remember to check your citation against the current guidelines for the specific style you are required to use.

A Closer Look: Creative Commons Licenses

If you’re someone who’s interested in creating OER, or finding open materials to use in the classroom – this post is for you!  We’ll be taking a closer look at how to identify and understand the symbols in Creative Commons Licenses.
Step 1: How to identify a Creative Commons License
If it’s a Creative Commons License, it’s going to look something like this:

The circle on the left (CC) stands for “Creative Commons.” Simply put, this means the item is NOT under traditional copyright.
Step 2:  What do the Creative Commons symbols tell us? 
Great question! The symbols can be a bit confusing at first glance.
The above definitions were written in “legal-ese” – and although the details are important, here are explanations below in more plain and simple language:
The person-icon, CC: BY, indicates that you are crediting the original source. All of the  licenses include the “BY” symbol, because we will always credit the creator – even if the work is modified, or content changed.

The next icon, SA (at left), stands for Share Alike. If you share the work, you have to stay with the original license that you found it under.

The equal sign means: you can use the material, but you cannot alter the content. It’s called ND, No Derivatives. 
And lastly, the dollar sign – NC for Non-Commercial, means that the work may not be used for profit/ commercial purposes.
Step 3: Creative Commons and You
After reading the above, the symbols might still be a little hazy – but the gist of it is to consider how these licensing options can impact Your work. Would you want your OER to be available for commercial purposes? Do you want to limit how future users can modify the content?
All of these considerations are made possible by the Creative Commons Licenses, and we’ll take an even closer look in our next blog post in this series.

Farewell from the Instructional Design Intern

I’m sad to say that today is the end of my time here at City Tech. I feel like we’ve really achieved a lot in that time with our tutorials, LibGuide, user test, the orientation site, and more. Today alone, I got through the final seven videos from our user tests AND got to help screen printing and button making with Nora. It looks like user test analysis will have to continue after my position is officially over, but I’m excited by the possibility of developing best practices over the summer and presenting our findings somewhere by the end of the year. I’ve learned so much this year, and I can’t wait to move forward having had this experience.
I want to say thank you for the opportunity to be here and for reading up on all we got to do. I’m so glad I have been able to spend this last year creating content for and working with the students here at City Tech. I’ve had such a wonderful time and am sad to go. Goodbye for now, City Tech!

OER: A Galaxy of Opportunity

We’re excited to present a new exhibit in the front Library display cases. The layout was based on the image below, with an eye-catching visual design by CityTech student William Luperena and CityTech alum Philip Zeng.

The theme is intended to spotlight Open Educational Resources (OER). 100% free of cost, they have the same quality standards as a traditional textbook – and without the $200 price-tag!

“ZTC” = Free! 

The rocket-ship/space design is a reminder that OER opens up new possibilities. If you sign up for “Zero Textbook Cost” or ZTC courses, they’ll be cost-free when it comes to textbooks or materials. You can save hundreds of dollars per semester. 

“Sombrero Galaxy in infrared light” by NASA is in the Public Domain

OER are not only great because they’re free – although of course, this is a great plus! They allow faculty more freedom – your Professor can take the materials, adopt them to a specific class, “remix” the content.  It’s possible given the “open” quality of OER, i.e. their open licenses

OER: A Galaxy of Opportunity

Essentially, OER provide a new “galaxy” (!) of options for affordable learning in the classroom. We’re happy to answer any questions you might have, and also check out this blog post about how to find Zero Textbook Cost classes in CUNYFirst, as you register for the upcoming semester.