Questions of quality in repositories of open educational resources: a literature review
Open educational resources (OER) are teaching and learning materials which are freely available and openly licensed. Repositories of OER (ROER) are platforms that host and facilitate access to these resources. ROER should not just be designed to store this content – in keeping with the aims of the OER movement, they should support educators in embracing open educational practices (OEP) such as searching for and retrieving content that they will reuse, adapt or modify as needed, without economic barriers or copyright restrictions. This paper reviews key literature on OER and ROER, in order to understand the roles ROER are said or supposed to fulfil in relation to furthering the aims of the OER movement. Four themes which should shape repository design are identified, and the following 10 quality indicators (QI) for ROER effectiveness are discussed: featured resources; user evaluation tools; peer review; authorship of the resources; keywords of the resources; use of standardised metadata; multilingualism of the repositories; inclusion of social media tools; specification of the creative commons license; availability of the source code or original files. These QI form the basis of a method for the evaluation of ROER initiatives which, in concert with considerations of achievability and long-term sustainability, should assist in enhancement and development.
Keywords: open educational resources; open access; open educational practice; repositories; quality assurance
(Published: 24 July 2014)
Citation: Research in Learning Technology 2014, 22: 20889 -http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/rlt.v22.20889