shared by Steven Parker on 05 Aug 12 - No Cached
Open digital faculty do more than just share and participate in open resources; they transfer their approaches to the teaching space. Learning becomes a shared activity in which the students also collaborate and participate in shaping the course activities. Student participation takes place in open environments where students might tweet what they learn, share insights on a group blog, create their own website of resources, or participate in a class wiki.
The difference is that today's sharing facilitators leverage technology to reach a much wider audience.
Although the natural inclination toward sharing cannot be altered, the moral responsibility to share can be influenced by the surrounding culture. The sense of obligation to share or not to share may be similar to the decision to be a vegetarian. For some, it is a lifestyle choice that may form slowly over a long period of time after many conversations with friends and colleagues. For others, the change can be sudden: a paradigm shift caused by participation in an unusual event. If an institution places value on faculty participation in open academic communities and social media activities (e.g., academic blogging), that culture can slowly influence faculty to be more open.
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These digital activities should not be the sole measure of tenure, but they should be counted in the tenure formula. The irony today is that if the open activity is analog (e.g., participation on a committee), it likely counts toward tenure, but if the open activity is digital (e.g., writing an academic blog), it probably does not.
They will push at (and leak out of) the boundaries of whatever learning management system (or other enterprise systems) the institution wants them to use. This is not because they are uncooperative; it's simply that these enterprise systems tend to be locked down, allowing only employees and students to share within these environments
For me, an interesting side effect of sharing on the open web is that I've learned to be more careful about what I say and write.
Looking for indicators of open digital faculty is easier than coming up with a strict definition. The presence of several of the following characteristics should be taken as an indication of open digital faculty:
- Writing a public blog or maintaining a public wiki to share academic interests
- Freely sharing what might otherwise be guarded intellectual property (e.g., textbooks, research-in-progress, computer programs, course materials, artwork)
- Participating in a learning community in a social networking platform (e.g., Twitter or LinkedIn discussion groups)
- Participating in a social network that includes students, both current and past (e.g., Facebook)
- Encouraging students to participate in class-related projects that employ web-based media (e.g., student blogs, group wikis)
- Creating or participating in open courses
- Sharing video or audio content created for a course (e.g., podcasts)
- Sharing information and ideas from conference talks on the web (e.g., recordings, tweets, presentation links)