Question #3: Please tell me about an Open Education project, textbook, or group that you have been a part of.
The thing I can speak to most directly is the work that I get to do at Hewlett as a Program Officer. My project is the Open Education Strategy. Last year, we concluded a process of refreshing our strategy.. For me, that was a huge project, coming into this field. I knew a little bit from the work that I had done previously around project-based learning, but now I get to work with teams who are not only in K-12 curriculum development but also professional learning. Then we’ve got the whole higher education sphere with work from the Open Textbooks to educational systems that are trying to support Open Education, and then the field-building globally.
Part of the strategy refresh was really getting an understanding of the landscape of the ecosystem and thinking about the position that Hewlett is going to take at this point in time in terms of how we’re supporting the ecosystem. I’m pleased with where we came to in the strategy, in terms of lines of work where we’re focused on not just the resources but also practice and pedagogy. We are also trying to really think about how we learn about the interactions that happen in classrooms among educators and students as they’re working in Open Education. We now have a more specific line of work now around sustainable systems such as working with higher education institutions and state systems to create support or adopt policies and practices that enable more effective use of Open Educational Resources and practices. We also are looking at supporting faculty educators, acknowledging and recognizing them for what they’re doing. Then in field building, we’re trying to attend to how we support the growth and expansion of the Open Education field in a way that’s intentional about engaging new communities. It’s been, as you may know, heavily focused around North America, the U.S., Canada, and Europe. We’re trying to see how we can learn more from the leadership on the African continent and in Latin America. We want to be much more intentional about how we address race, culture, and identity through the work in Open Education.
Now that we’ve articulated this through the refresh process, we’re moving into implementing the strategy which means identifying partners that we’ll be working with and learning together around these new areas.