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Technology and Open Learning: The Potential of Open Education Resources for K-12 Education

  • Neil Butcher
  • Merridy Wilson-Strydom
Part of the Springer International Handbook of Information Technology in Primary and Secondary Education book series (SIHE, volume 20)

Abstract

In this chapter, we consider the concept of distance education in relation to open schooling, and then move on to define the concept of open learning. All too often, distance education and open learning are assumed to be synonymous, as evidenced in terms such as ‘open and distance learning’. The concepts of distance education and open learning are distinct and conflating the two has negative consequences for planning in education systems. However, if the meaning of each is properly understood, then it becomes possible to use all of the lessons learned from distance education and the use of ICT in education to create schooling systems that are more intrinsically open and thus better equipped to provide high quality education to learners. We consider how technology can be used to support open learning, with a particular focus on the role that open education resources (OERs) might play in improving quality and reach of education. The chapter ends with a brief example of an OER project supporting K-12 education in South Africa.

Keywords

Learning Objects Open education Open Learning Open Education Resources (OER) Open Schooling 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science + Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Neil Butcher
    • 1
  • Merridy Wilson-Strydom
    • 1
  1. 1.Neil Butcher and Associates (NBA)JohannesburgSouth Africa

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