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Building a Sustainable World through Open Education
Monday, October 16 • 3:00pm - 3:30pm
DigitalNWT: Designing Open Educational Resources to Support Digital Literacy in Denendeh and Inuvialuit Nunangat (or the Northwest Territories (NWT), Canada)

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This presentation provides a case study of DigitalNWT — a project aimed at developing openly licensed digital literacy resources focused on Denendeh and Inuvialuit Nunangat (or the Northwest Territories (NWT), Canada).

The presentation begins with a brief overview of DigitalNWT - a partnership of four Indigenous organizations (the Gwich’in Tribal Council, the Inuvialuit Regional Corporation, the Sahtú Renewable Resources Board, and the Tłı̨chǫ Government), Aurora College, Smart Communities Society NWT, Hands on Media Education and the University of Alberta - that has developed a series of introductory digital literacy courses for people living in rural, primarily Indigenous communities in the NWT.

The session then provides a discussion of the learning materials produced by DigitalNWT. This includes an overview of the three courses (Basic Digital Literacy, Digital Content and Connectivity, and Digital Storytelling) which resulted in creation of over 180 openly licensed learning materials ranging from slides and facilitator guides to videos and even 3d printed models.

After reviewing the curricular materials, the presentation comments on the challenges and strengths of the project drawing on the works of Hegarty (2015) and Lar-son (2021). With regard to barriers, DigitalNWT faced a particular challenge in finding suitable openly licensed materials (such as images) to include within the curriculum. A secondary challenge was ensuring that learning materials would be useful to learners in context with limited, unreliable or unaffordable broadband and limited digital literacy skills. Despite these challenges in developing openly licensed materials, the project was enabled by aspects of open pedagogy, and specifically Hegarty’s (2015) focus on empowering learning, community centred, reflective and interconnected pedagogy, and Lar-son’s (2021) focus on respect, relationships, relevance and reciprocity.

Hegarty, B. (2015). Attributes of Open Pedagogy: A Model for Using Open Educational Resources. Educational Technology, 55(4), 3-13

Lar-Son, K. (2021). Open Education and Ethical Considerations for Indigenous Knowledges. [PowerPoint Slides]. Open Access Week Presentation, University of British Columbia.

Keywords: Digital Literacy, Open Educational Resources, Northwest Territories Canada

Session outcomes and takeaways: After the presentation attendees will be able to:
Explain the challenges faced in making openly licensed materials for rural communities in in Denendeh and Inuvialuit Nunangat.

Understand how Hegarty’s framework for open pedagogy and Lar-son’s 6Rs for Indigenous OERs can be used improve openly licensed content.

avatar for Michael McNally

Michael McNally

Associate Professor, University of Alberta
Michael B. McNally is an Assistant Professor at the School of Library and Information Studies at the University of Alberta. His research interests include intellectual property and its alternatives including open educational resources, user-generated content, radio spectrum management... Read More →
avatar for Kyle Napier

Kyle Napier

Instructor | Researcher | Designer, Dene/nêhiyaw Métis

Rob McMahon

University of Alberta

Monday October 16, 2023 3:00pm - 3:30pm MDT
Bear (S8/10) Edmonton Convention Centre