Call for papers – Special issue Open Education in the Context of Digital Transformation | ZFHE 14/2
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Call for papers – Special issue Open Education in the Context of Digital Transformation
Editors: Olaf Zawacki-Richter (University of Oldenburg) & Marco Kalz (Heidelberg University of Education)
February 15, 2019 – Submission deadline Date of publication: June 2019
About this special issue
With the proliferation of ubiquitous digital media, tools and devices the open education (OE) movement has gained momentum over the last decade. The majority of higher education institutions now use or explore educational technology of some kind to “enhance” on-campus learning or to offer “blended learning” programs to provide flexible learning opportunities. Open and distance learning has clearly moved from the fringes into mainstream higher education (XIAO, 2018). On the other hand, this expansion is accompanied by an internal and society-wide discussion on the impact of the digital transformation on higher education institutions.
To date, the open education movement consists on the one hand of resource-oriented initiatives and on the other hand on more process-oriented activities that foster openness. Digital media enable the boundless sharing, re-use and re-design of learning materials discussed under the concept of open educational resources (GESER, 2007). At the same time, millions of learners participate in open courses offered by hundreds of higher education institutions to increase chances in the job market (CASTANO-MUNOZ, KREIJNS, KALZ, & PUNIE, 2017) or for professionalisation (CASTANO-MUNOZ, KALZ, KREINS, & PUNIE, 2018).
While there have been several rather narrow attempts to define openness via licensing practices or use of resources BAKER (2017) conceptualizes open education from the perspective of a continuum of transparency and freedom. Objects in the open education space can consist of different combinations of these two dimensions and the product-oriented OER perspective is combined with the perspective of open courses.
Activities around the opening of education are driving forces of change in higher education that have an impact on teaching and learning, but also on research and higher education policies and administration. However, “openness in higher education” is not a new phenomenon (cf. PETER & DEIMANN, 2013). Providing access to higher education for non-traditional students throughout the lifespan has been the raison d’être of open learning and open universities which use educational media to provide flexible learning opportunities independent of time and space (TAIT, 2008).
A widely accepted framework for research into open or online distance education was developed by ZAWACKI-RICHTER and ANDERSON (2014) that describes three broad lines of research on the macro, meso and micro level. Along those lines, this special themed issue addresses aspects of OE in the context of digital transformation that include but are not limited to the following questions on…
…the macro level of theory and global educational systems:
- What are elements of OE (such as open learning, open educational resources, open educational practices) and how can OE be defined in the context of teaching and learning in higher education?
- What are the theoretical foundations of OE?
- How is OE related to the fields of distance learning, instructional design and educational technology?
- How do national higher education systems of open and distance education respond to the global process of digital transformation?
- What is the impact of technology infusion on social reproduction and equality in educational systems?
…the meso level of higher education institutions and organization:
- How can OE practices be integrated and facilitated in formal higher education institutions?
- What kind of support must be provided to foster the design and development of Open Educational Resources (OER)?
- How can new approaches of quality assurance for OER be integrated in institutional processes for evaluation?
- Which approaches to governance of technology-enhanced innovations of teaching and learning work best in higher education institutions?
…the micro level of teaching and learning in open education settings:
- Is there an “open pedagogy”? How can open educational practices be integrated into teaching and learning with digital media and tools?
- What are scalable approaches to feedback and assessment practices in OE?
- What are faculty members’ perceptions with regard to the use and development of OER for teaching in higher education?
- How can we create connections and bridges between open learning and OE?