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Openness and measuring impact

Page history last edited by Tracey Madden 10 years, 7 months ago

Knowing anecdotal at the Centre that any formality in obtaining resources (e.g. logging in, email request) can act as a barrier to their uptake, we have released the OER in this project as openly as possible.


Some of the routes to sharing resources we have chosen (eDocs and JorumOpen) require no log in of any type, some (Scribd and SlideShare) do (Merlot does not store resources but stores links so log in would depend on whre the resource was actually kept.)  Where there is no log in requirement and/or lack of access to site statistics, though we may be aware that resources have been downloaded (Scribd and SlideShare both reveal numbers of downloads) we have no information about to whom.


Statistics from JorumOpen, when they are available, may shed more light on interest and reuse but this seems to be a dilemma that will always be there with sharing openly: when people have no obligation to make it known that they have downloaded a resource, how do you collect reuse data and how much can you reasonably expect to collect?


At the moment it seem that the richest data could only be found where reusers make themselves known to the resources creator or else reworked resources appear in the public domain in a form recognisable to the creator. Either way, this seems very inefficient in terms of how much we could learn and may not bring to light anything but a small percentage of the actual reuse.


There also seems to be no way of effectively capturing all the other effects of having a range of teaching and learning resources openly available: no repository gathers statistics on the inspiration that new resources may provide and we will probably know very little about those who use these resources for self education.


In short, whatever impact we do suceed in evidencing it might only be the tip of the iceberg.

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