Reflections on the Open Scotland workshop and plenary at OER23 by Joe Wilson, originally posted on Experimental blog.
To mark 10 years of the Open Scotland initiative we held two events as part of the OER23 Conference to bring together members of the education community in Scotland and some of the international delegates to reflect on how the open education landscape in Scotland has evolved over the last decade against the backdrop of global crisis and uncertainty (Campbell and Wilson 2021).
We held a pre-conference workshop and an in-conference plenary.
As ever grateful to ALT and the University of the Highlands and Islands for this opportunity. The OER Conference took place in Scotland for the first time since 2016. A main theme of the conference was.
“Open Education in Scotland #OpenScot – celebrating 10 years of the Scottish Open Education Declaration.”
I’m grateful as ever to Lorna M. Campbell my co-founder of Open Scotland and the many supporters we have found across the international and Scottish learning community. It’s now been some weeks following the conference allowing me some reflection time (as well as time to do busy and full-on day job) We both juggle workplace commitments while championing open educational practice.
It’s ten years since we set off on what we thought would be a short journey to get Scottish Education to embrace Open Education and open practice. Please dig into the commentary on our slides. It’s been more of an uphill journey than we ever anticipated.
The workshop and plenary went well but at #OER23 we were talking to the converts. It is really apparent that other countries have embraced the UNESCO declaration and are moving ahead of Scotland at a rate of knots.
The Scottish system seems – and to use a good Scottish word “thrawn” Everyone we’ve reached out to sees the Open Scotland Declaration as an achievable aim but equally College Principals, agency policy makers all think that it is someone else’s responsibility to drive change across the system.
Have a look at the output of the workshop and the plenary below. The will is there but the policy leavers and policy makers remain tantalisingly out of reach.
The padlet is still open but as it has now been shared on the open web input is now subject to approval – but please chip in your ideas.
The padlet – highlights what might be. The output from the Padlet will become a manifesto for change from #OpenScot.
As a footnote I asked ChaptGPT about Open Scotland. The text it created is below it shows we’ve been making all the right waves- how else could ChatGPT pick up themes like this.
But Open Scotland is not yet a Scottish Government initiative – it shows how ChatGPT could create an alternative reality – it created a fantasy.
We’ve still to make adoption of UNESCO declaration on Open Education a reality in Scotland.
I hope we don’t have to wait another 10 years.
Once again thanks to the community around the #oer conferences – you give us the strength, love and enthusiasm to keep pushing at the open door. My last post I hope reflected all the great things happening around the world.
“The Scottish Government has been a strong supporter of Open Education and Open Educational Resources (OER) in Scotland. In 2013, the Scottish Government launched the Open Scotland initiative to raise awareness of the benefits of Open Education and promote the development and use of OER in Scotland.
As part of this initiative, the Scottish Government has provided funding to support the development of OER and the implementation of Open Education practices in Scottish schools, colleges, and universities. For example, the Scottish Funding Council (SFC) has provided funding to support the creation of OER through its Open Educational Resources Programme, and the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA) has developed a framework for the use of OER in the development of qualifications. Education Scotland and HMIE support a number of Open Education initiatives across the school and College system.
In addition, the Scottish Government has endorsed the principles of the UNESCO Paris OER Declaration, which calls on governments and institutions around the world to support the development and use of OER. This endorsement demonstrates the Scottish Government’s commitment to promoting the use of OER as a means of improving access to education and promoting social inclusion.
Overall, the Scottish Government’s support for Open Education and OER has helped to raise awareness of the benefits of open education and has supported the development and implementation of Open Education practices in Scotland.”
Would be nice if it was remotely true …