Building a Distributed Knowledge Network: National and International Perspective
Presenter: Toru Iiyoshi, Senior Scholar/Director, Knowledge Media Lab, Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching
According to Mr. Iiyoshi, “the main tenet of open education is to make educational assets freely available to the public. This is becoming easer and less expensive as network and multimedia technology evolves” and open source packages like: MIT Open Courseware, Carnegie Mellon Open Learning Initiative, and Merlot mature. Unfortunately, several obstacles may be experienced when trying to use these tools to improve education.
- First, although these tools are readily available, documentation on how to effectively implement and utilize the resources is scarce. Some samples are:
- H2O Playlist – shared lists of readings and other content about topics of intellectual interest. Developed by the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard Law School
- Connexions – contains a collection of free scholarly materials and software tools. Site is maintained by Rice University and licensed under Creative Commons.
- Tapped In – “online workplace [for] an international community of educational professionals.” Site maintained by SRI International.
- Second, there are no incentives for faculty to use and enrich open educational sources, so there is no mechanism for “paying forward”.
- Finally, educators need to look beyond departmental and institutional boundaries and connect efforts among many settings and source entrepreneurs.
The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching Knowledge Media Laboratory has developed a couple of products that they believe will assist faculty in addressing the three items noted above.
- Keep Toolkit – provides “ a set of web-based tools that help teachers, students and institutions quickly create compact and engaging knowledge representations on the Web.” (Product works well with SAKAI.)
- Gallery of Teaching & Learning – site contains collections, exhibitions, and case studies of technology-enabled teaching and learning content.