Week 3 Summary

Hi Everyone,
It’s been a busy week for everyone I guess? Hopefully you’ll have a little bit of time to add any final thoughts, ideas, responses and topics in this final week of the Opening up Education forum.

Thanks to @CathB and @sbose for your contributions on our most recent topic ‘What will Open Education look like in ten years time?’

Issues to address included flexibility of assessment, training of educators, suiting the individual’s needs and also large numbers of people. I’d be interested to hear your thoughts.

I am sure many of you will have been contributiong to the other forums, Employability, Equity and Inclusion, and Technology. Do you see any synergies in our discussions with those in any of these other themes?



Many thanks, Catherine. There’s a clear overlap of the sub-themes, somewhat a symbiotic relationship. Technology helps increasingly in opening up education. When education is opened up, there will be less or no economic, age, gender, racial and other restrictions, and more people will access quality education, which in turn results in more people getting skills that make them employable. When more and more people get educated and employed as outcomes of technology-supported open education, we’ll have in families, workplaces and society at large more evangelists and ambassadors of open education and ICT in education—people willing to readily make appropriate policies and take meaningful actions when they assume policy-making or administrative or teaching roles.

The question then is: Are education systems, infrastructural development, industry landscape and society’s values improving at the pace at which MOOCs, other open online courses and people who need education are increasing? If they’re not, what will be people’s, education providers’ and COL/other education-support organizations’ preparations for handling the impending crisis?

Hi Cathy,
Am very new here but I have found the discussions throw your guidance very educative.
How I wish I was introduced in to the inception the forum.

What a great question!
Policy and infrastructure certainly move at a ‘snail’s pace’ compared to the changing needs of our lifelong learners who often need to learn ‘now’ in a way that suits their life, employment and other commitments.
We need to explore flexible ways of working at all levels. What does everyone else think?

No problem Musonda, glad you are here.
The great thing about a forum is you can add at any time and energize discussions, adding new perspective.


I am not sure whether the infrastructure is so big a deal, as the provision of appropriate human support for the learner.

There is a conflict sometimes between optimising flexibility, and providing adequate support for the learner from both the educator and a peer group.

For example, the bulk of people who complete MOOCs successfully - which by their nature very flexible and very “open” - have substantial previous educational background and so can learn relatively unsupported. But if we really want education to be open to less confident learners, I think we may need to accept that a compromise is needed where flexibility is not maximised, but effective, personal human support is on offer.

Thank you very much.