Research/Research papers/Localizing International Business Resources

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Brief Description: This case study shares lessons learned from making content available as open educational resources and eliciting worldwide collaboration. Our goal is to make resources available online in a format that is accessible and open for repurposing and localizing and learning from the contributions made to the content.

Localizing Educational Resources Using WikiEducator: A Case Study


The exploration of open educational resources has become an innovative way for educators to expand their portfolio of teaching resources. MSU Global of Michigan State University (MSU), with collaborators, is making international business content available through WikiEducator. The objective of this project is two-fold. The first is to make these resources available online in a format that is accessible and open for repurposing and localizing for people who want to learn about and teach international business. The second is to enable and learn from translations, case studies, and international examples that are contributed by worldwide users to the content, and in turn internationalize our curriculum.

In this case study we are sharing our lessons learned to provide a model for making content available as open educational resources in a format that elicits worldwide collaboration.


MSU Global, in partnership with Santa Ana Community College and Finance, Credit and International Business (FCIB), created practical learning resources for instructors of international business through a Business International Education (BIE) grant from the U.S. Department of Education. This content was developed to support the standards set forth by the National Association of Small Business International Trade Educators (NASBITE) Certified Global Business Professional credentialing program and was designed around a granular framework so that readings, activities, and assessments could be used by an instructor to tailor them to his or her specific audience.


The main target constituency for this project is instructors of international business in the United States and in developing countries, as wells as independent learners.


The content was initially housed on static MSU websites. However, static sites do not allow content to be editable and contributable. To make these functions available, we are collaborating with the Commonwealth of Learning and the WikiEducator ( project which develops open education resources and reaches 48 developing countries. By adding our content to WikiEducator, we are able to reach our constituency of instructors in developing countries who can share how they have adapted the material and contribute ideas on how to customize the content for specific locations/audiences.


The issues we have faced and anticipate encountering as we go through the process of localizing content include:

Organization: Organize the content in a way that allows users to take units of information as opposed to an entire course to implement in their curriculum.

Usability: Make the entire content accessible and editable, especially for users in developing countries, by creating files in a non-proprietary format.

Localization: Make the content useful and localized for an international audience.

Through collaboration, many of our issues have already been resolved. We have learned new technologies that help implement strategies and have been exposed to new perspectives and viewpoints that will help us in upcoming challenges.


From this project we have developed a model that we plan to replicate for other content. The ultimate measure of success will be the usable and local contributions made to the content on WikiEducator.