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Dear [First Name]

Welcome to the March 2018 edition of OERu upDate - a quick look at recent accomplishments and activities.

In this newsletter, we’re focusing on the “soft launch” of the micro-courses which form part of the OERu’s Learning in a Digital Age (LiDA) course. LiDA is designed to help participants develop the skills and confidence to become competent and autonomous learners in a digital age. The course provides micro-credential options through Edubits and the first two pathways to achieve formal credit towards exit qualifications for the OERu 1st year of study: Certificate Higher Education Business (United Kingdom) and Certificate in First Year Foundations, (United States).

The OERu is focused on creating opportunities for learners, educators, and institutions around the world by sharing resources and creating connections. Please share these opportunities with others by encouraging them to subscribe at oeru.org/stay-connected.

Registrations now open for our Digital Citizenship micro-course

Digital citizenship is the second LiDA micro-course going live on 4 April 2018.

This micro-course explores the concept of digital citizenship and how best to apply this knowledge to enhance your learning online and optimise your engagement in the contemporary workplace. We recommend this course for anyone involved in higher education.

As with all the micro-courses in the LiDA series, learners have the opportunity to earn micro-credentials or earn formal academic credit towards the designated OERu 1st year of study qualifications.

Please join us in making OERu history with the inaugural offering of Digital Citizenship. Reserve your seat by registering online and please share the gift of knowledge with others whom you think might want to join this digital journey.

Join the OERu social learning network on Mastodon.oeru.org

We are excited to announce the launch of mastodon.oeru.org - OERu’s own social network to support learners and the wider OERu family.

Mastodon is a federated technology, which is administered independently across multiple open source software servers around the world called instances rather than via a single corporate provider. Users from one instance have the ability to follow and interact with users on other instances.  This raises exciting opportunities for OERu partners to host their own instances (we openly publish the technical recipes on how to do this). It also offers learners engaging in OERu courses at partner institutions the ability to interact with each other on a global scale. The OERu open source team welcomes interested partners who would like to pilot federated social networks for their own institutions.

We have used the soft launch of the OERu 1st year of study as an opportunity to help bootstrap the OERu Mastodon community.  We are enjoying the “backchannel” conversations.  The OERu platform is demonstrating the value of these technologies to support learning with the ability to integrate posts which contain the course code hashtag (for example #LiDA101) in the course feed on the OERu course site.  

Everyone is welcome! For information on how to sign up on mastodon.oeru.org, please consult the OERu support site.

Successful launch of Digital Skills for Online Learning micro-course

On 14 March OERu launched the first cohort offering of the Digital literacies for online learning micro-course. The course is still “live” and the current cohort will be active until the end of March 2018; thereafter the course will be available for independent study with open registration dates.

The LiDA course is about learning on the Internet, rather than learning via a single application like a Learning Management System. The OERu is trialling a number of new open technologies in our component-based learning platform by integrating a number of “best of breed” open source software technologies.  We opted for a “soft launch” approach to pilot these technologies in an authentic OERu course setting to ensure that the technologies are working as planned and to generate benchmarks for future planning and scalability of the platforms.

Last week, to coincide with the OERu offering, our friends at the Saylor Academy announced the launch of LiDA on their Moodle site, making use of the same openly licensed course materials. Saylor is presenting LiDA in conjunction with our OERu instance. In open education, by working together, we can achieve far more than by working alone.

To date the OERu instance of the course has attracted 293 participants from 53 different countries and we are happy with the performance of our open technologies.

We thank you for your interest in OERu! You are helping us create opportunities for learners, who might have been excluded from tertiary education due to a variety of circumstances. Through the partnership forged with the OERu member institutions around the world, we will continue to strive to improve affordable access to higher education.

Wayne Mackintosh
Director of the OER Foundation.

LiDA micro-courses

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Digital citizenship
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Critical media literacies and associated digital skills
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Digital literacies for online learning
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Open education, copyright and open licensing in a digital world
Image credits

LiDA101: Smartphone and social media by Geralt dedicated to the public domain.

LiDA102: Tablet and social media by Geralt dedicated to the public domain.

LiDA103: Copyright by Nick Youngson CC- BY-SA 3.0 Alpha Stock Images.

LiDA104: TV and wall paper by AlexAntropov86 dedicated to the public domain.


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