OE Global 2023 has ended
Building a Sustainable World through Open Education
Wednesday, October 18 • 1:30pm - 2:00pm
Why Should School Policy Makers Invest in OER?

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Norwegian Digital Learning Arena (NDLA) (2007 - cd), is a story of an OER project that turned into a permanent operation as the model proved successful. The model found its form following a change in legislation that made upper secondary education in Norway free of all charges for the students. NDLA thus became a tool for regional public authorities to provide learning resources for upper secondary education in Norway. Due to long term commitment from owners and dedicated staff, NDLA has become one of the largest providers of digital learning resources to upper secondary education in Norway. NDLA delivers quality content that levels or (sometimes) even outperform that of commercial providers.

The sustained support of NDLA and OER is a deliberate and a strategic choice. In this presentation the audience will be introduced to the open collaboration model and communities of open practice that NDLA represents. We will explain what we believe have been key factors in bringing NDLA from 2007 - 2023. By using NDLA as a case we will make the case that investing in OER makes an impact of strategic importance to schools and society and should be incorporated in strategies for the development of school systems and society in general.

NDLA is a model of professional production of OER with workflows, language vetting and editorial staffs. As the high quality of OER has been a crucial factor to the success of NDLA, the model has proven to be cost efficient. In the presentation the financial mechanisms for NDLA and the costs of producing OER content will be presented.

Another important aspect is that NDLA represents an important alternative to the traditional market models. NDLA provides an important mechanism for delivering quality content regardless (of) the number of students taking the subject class. NDLA also has proven to be a good model when the market segments are small. NDLA has also invested heavily in open source software (H5P) as a tool for building advanced and interactive content. In the presentation the policies and possibilities for content production will be illustrated.

The well-known added values of OER repositories further strengthen the argument for the NDLA model. As such, the investment in NDLA also enables the school authorities and owners’ to provide students outside ordinary programmes as well as other non-formal and informal learners with the accessibility of free learning resources. In addition we experience that a large OER repository attracts and adds value to professional learning providers that include our content in their learning services. In the presentation we will provide examples of reuse of our content by private vendors.

NDLA is not only about digital OER content and digital services. Our mandate is to support teaching and learning in general, facilitating and nurturing a culture for sharing and openness. As such the investment in OER through a model like NDLA also delivers a system for capacity building in the school system. This process takes place in several ways and will be discussed in the presentation.

Keywords: Strategy, OER-policies, school-systems, costs, organization OER models, capacity building

Session outcomes and takeaways: In this presentation the audience will learn how regional authorities responsible for providing free learning materials for upper secondary schools, by a strategic choice of investing in OER and their own teachers, have succeeded both in the delivery of large volume of high-quality learning material as well as capacity building in their schools at the same time. The audience will also learn about the costs of OER. High quality content is far from being cost-free. The NDLA budget shows however that the model delivers content at a very favorable price.

avatar for Sigurd Trageton

Wednesday October 18, 2023 1:30pm - 2:00pm MDT
Turtle (S17/18) Edmonton Convention Centre