Open: Te Philosophy and Practices that are Revolutionizing Education and Science
Governments and other funding entities that wish to maximize the impacts of their education investments are moving toward open education licensing policies. National, provincial/state governments, and education systems all play a critical role in setting policies that drive education investments and have an interest in ensuring that public funding of education makes a meaningful, cost- effective contribution to socioeconomic development. Given this role, these policy-making entities are ideally positioned to require recipients of public funding to produce educational resources under an open license. Let us be specific. Governments, foundations, and education systems/institutions can and should implement open education licensing policies by requiring open licenses on the educational resources produced with their funding.
Higher education, itself − if not broken − is certainly delusional. For how else can we describe an enterprise in which we continue to pretend that our students start and finish at the same place and at the same pace? Where we cling to the fantasy that our students have unfettered access to required course materials. Where our programs do not serve the modal student, who works at least part-time and will no longer spend four years studying full-time at the same institution. And where we claim to value being ‘student-centered’ when in practice faculty, course content, accreditation or testing requirements, and budgetary concerns drive the learning process far more than students.
All of this is why I bristle when I hear the old ‘if it ain’t broke, why x it?’ argument. For if it’s not open, it is broken, and that’s precisely why we must fix it.