An article by David Wiley, a well known advocate of open education – https://opencontent.org/blog/archives/4859
Summary of Key Principles
- Education is sharing. Ideas, knowledge, skills, and attitudes are public goods. This means they are nonrivalrous and nonexcludable, and therefore easy to share.
- Expressions of ideas, knowledge, skills, and attitudes captured in physical artifacts like books are private goods, meaning they are both rivalrous and excludable, making them difficult to share.
- When concrete expressions of ideas, knowledge, skills, and attitudes are converted from a physical into a digital format, this changes them from private goods back to being public goods, once again making them easier to share.
- Copyright law places artificial limits on our ability to use technology to share educational materials. This changes these public goods into club goods, once again making them difficult to share.
- Educational materials published under an open license are called open educational resources (OER). When digital educational materials become OER, they are converted back into public goods. Over 1 billion openly licensed materials are published online.
- Open educational resources are far better aligned with the core values of education than materials published under an all rights reserved traditional copyright. This closer alignment creates opportunities for less expensive, more flexible, more effective education.
- Because of their close alignment with the core values of education, adopting OER in place of traditionally copyrighted educational resources provides unique opportunities and benefits to faculty and students. Instructional designers, faculty, and other educators and administrators should develop a basic understanding of OER.