Reaching Out: Expanding OER and Technology Integration in the School Library :async:

Julie Erickson (Technology, Innovation in Education), Joan Upell (independent contractor)

The three-year IMLS Grant, Reaching Out: Meeting the Needs of Rural School Librarians, focused on building capacity of stakeholders to create, access, use, adapt and redistribute OER. Grant participants learned the skills needed to utilize Open Educational Resources (OER), to integrate digital applications into professional practices, and to serve as instructional leaders in their schools. The project addressed the needs of rural school librarians as they transitioned to a more digital-based environment. Through face-to-face and virtual opportunities, the project also provided librarians with opportunities to build capacity as instructional leaders.

The professional development led participants through learning about OER, curating OER, remixing OER and then creating OER. In addition, participants developed leadership and collaboration skills to work with colleagues and administrators to implement openly licensed content.

This interactive session will provide an overview of the courses and process the participants went through to go from limited to no open education resources implementation to creating lessons for OER Commons and sharing information with their staff and leadership.

Extended abstract: OE_Global_2021_paper_74.pdf 📄

Activity Details

UNESCO OER Action Area: Building capacity
Format: Asynchronous Interactive Activity
Language: English


This activity can be completed at any time during (or after) the conference.

Instructions and materials for the activity will be added below by the authors. They will provide specific details on how to participate and what to share back as a response to the activity.

Welcome to Reaching Out: Expanding OER and Technology Integration in the School Library.

Joan Upell and I have recorded this session and provided a self-paced outline to guide you through the resources.

Recording | Self-paced Guide

To participate in the conversation, please create an OER Commons account and join our group Expanding OER in the School Library.

A. In the Expanding OER in the School Library Group use the Discussions Tab to reply to
Question 1: Which tool/s do you currently use to curate OER content?

B. Search OER Commons and add a resource that you think will be of interest to other K-12 school librarians to the [Expanding OER in the School Library Group](Expanding OER in the School Library Group Resources | OER Commons).

C. In the Expanding OER in the School Library Group use the Discussions Tab to reply to
Question 2: What do you see as barriers to K-12 OER implementation and how might you use the Reaching Out content or other solutions to overcome those barriers?

Hi Julie and Joan,

I’ve joined the OER Commons group and look forward to seeing the courses you previewed. I am a librarian in higher ed, but love seeing more expanding the role of librarians in K-12 OER. Jennifer Van Allen and I have an asynchronous activity on a special issue of Open Practices and Equity Pedagogy. We would love for you to check it out and brainstorm if there’s any alignment of your project with the special issue - Brainstorming for a Special Issue on Intersections of Open Education and Equity Pedagogy :async: - #2 by skatz


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Julie / Joan:

I’m a big fan of librarian involvement in open education so thanks for contributing these great resources and insights.

It seems to me that the skills of a librarian are really essential to ensuring successful and sustainable development, use, and curation of open education.

I like the Explain, Explore, Remix/Contribute, Expand and Sustain flow to your initiative.

To me, particularly important is the Sustain communication component where librarians are connected to each other so that they can themselves engage in sharing and helping each othe
Great to see that you have developed a set of courses for helping librarians.
And I love the emphasis you are placing on curation. As the volume of OER increases there is a growing need for curation and this too is something librarians are excellent at.

There are a number of initiatives that are looking at criteria for evaluating OER. You reference the Educators Evaluating the Quality of Instructional Products (EQuIP) rubric from Achieve that looks at Standards, Accessibility and Bias. Are there other rubrics you looked at? Are you aware of rubrics that are specifically for OER not just instructional materials in general? It would be great to see an emerging consenus based OER quality rubric around this.

I wonder how you see or hope that your work can be adopted / adapted by others? Is it relevant to the international librarian community?

Thanks again for a great activity.

1 Like