Helping Potential Members Make the Decision
I have a few thoughts relating the the Information pack document. I am thinking about this from the perspective of a managers who is responsible for an academic or administrative unit with budgetary and production responsibility for designing, developing, and delivering educational services.
There is no question that the benefits outlined are quite valuable. I think though that the Foundation can provide services that can help the operational managers (directors of learning design, multimedia specialists, faculty members, program managers, etc.) develop the rationale for membership when they make their budget request. This is of course becoming increasingly important as the higher education sector becomes increasingly pressured financially. Artifacts such as
- Course plans for training,
- Examples of a variety of OER,
- Case studies (short),
would be helpful.
In addition, discounts for consortia (local partnerships) could also be great because most institutions are interested in establishing partnerships, and OER could be seen as a catalyst.
I believe too that there are different messages about benefits that can be directed to operational managers, faculty, and strategic decision makers/policy developers. For example, if you look across a system at the University level (across colleges or campuses) or the State level (across universities, colleges, polytechnics, etc.) your perspective tends to be systemic. You are looking for effectiveness and efficiency gains across a state, nation, sector, etc., while most units within the larger system are trying to optimize their own performance, leaving the the consequences (externalities) for others to figure out. That is, on the unit level there tends to be an impulse to compete with each other.
What types of benefits and services can be provided to state, national, sector-wide, policy makers to help individual units (schools, universities, colleges, departments, individual faculty members, unit administrators, etc.) think and behave in ways that promote overall societal benefit and understand the role of OER? -Ken Udas