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Canada’s contribution to the commons: Creating a culture of Open Education
Coffin, Mark

PeriodicalPages 1-30
PublisherAthabasca University Graduate Students’ Association, Athabasca University
CountryCanada, North America

Key Players and Recommendations


University and College Administrators can reduce costs and improve the quality of learning with Open Education. They can promote Open Education by:

Providing education sessions around the benefits of Open Education institutional leaders;
Adopting Open Source Learning Management Systems;
Incentivizing the creation of OER and Open Access publications and provide IT support to allow easy sharing and distribution;
Exploring alternative business models for Open Education practices; and
Establishing forums for national and international discussions on open education to create and support platforms for the sharing, distribution and quality;
Publishing research in Open Access journals; and
Working with professional associations to establish quality control mechanisms.


Open Educational content empowers teaching faculty to reclaim ownership over learning materials and improve their teaching methods through sharing, collaboration, and critique. Faculty can contribute to Open Education by:

Exploring open access alternative to commercial learning materials;
Collaborating to create OER with other instructors;
Publishing open access textbooks;
Publishing research in Open Access journals; and
Working with professional associations to establish quality control mechanisms.


Students benefit from Open Education through reduced cost of learning materials, improved quality of education, and in some cases more interactive classroom experiences Students can promote Open Education alternatives through:

Expressing concerns to teaching faculty about the cost of commercial materials and a preference for OER options when the quality is comparable;
Encouraging the university administration to take the steps noted above;
Advocating for more collaborative learning and facilitative teaching practices.


Governments have an interest in the cost savings and improved quality of learning that Open Education initiatives can provide at all levels of public education. Governments can encourage Open Education by:

Exploring Open Access alternatives to traditional K-12 learning materials (Provincial);
Subsidizing the cost of Open Access textbook development where no alternatives to commercial texts exist (Provincial);
Providing competitive funding for the creation of open-access textbooks for higher education (Provincial and Federal); and
Making research grants issued by government agencies conditional upon the open-access publication of research results (Provincial and Federal). control of OER.

Keywords benefits of OER · collaborative OER · higher education · Open access alternatives

Published atEdmonton, Alberta
RefereedDoes not apply
Export optionsBibTex · EndNote · Tagged XML · Google Scholar

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