Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Open Course Content

Here's another blog post I wrote that's been published over at UMass Amherst' TeachOIT blog. It's about sharing free course content over the Internet:
As teachers begin to post multimedia lecture material on their SPARK courses, they often ask our Instructional Media Lab staff how to stop students from downloading, saving, or re-distributing course content outside of the UMass SPARK environment. The short answer is: you can’t. While SPARK is a safe place to post files for educational fair use, original course materials such as lecture videos, powerpoint slides, and syllabi are always exposed to the elements of the Internet to some extent. Instructors entering the world of the writable Web are beginning to face savvy students’ abilities to access content on their own terms outside of class, or even send it to fellow students taking a similar course elsewhere. Yet is it really a bad thing? Is this lack of teacher-centric control a new form of cheating, or is it an emerging paradigm for curricular development and open learning?
Read more at TeachOIT.

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