What is generally meant by Open Education is the free sharing of ideas, practices, knowledge, and everything else related to learning between students, instructors, and institutions. Spurred by the need to make education accessible to all, the Open Education movement gained ground as the Internet evolved to enable easy sharing of different forms of media. From PDFs of a syllabus, to videos of lectures, to a slideshow of a student’s presentation, to a whole textbook accessible online, these educational resources are freely available for anyone to reuse, revise, remix, and redistribute. Many of these open educational resources are under different levels of Creative Commons licenses.
The Office of Learning Technology supports Open Education in various ways. Through UBC Blogs, the WordPress MU blogging platform has been used as an open course management system for several student directed seminars such as Parsia and Science Fiction and the City. As UBC’s representative on the organizing committee, OLT helped host the 2009 Open Education Conference last Aug. 12 – 14, 2009 at the Robson Square Campus. With more than 200 on-site attendees, and hundreds more following along online, the event attracted a diverse range of delegates from every single continent in the world. You read about the event here.
For more information, please read a post by Brian Lamb: http://blogs.ubc.ca/open/open-up/