Reframing Educational Tools as Open Access and Sustainable Funding Models

Reframing Educational Tools as Open Access and Sustainable Funding Models

Kris Swen Helge (Rutgers University, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-9805-4.ch017
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The SARS CoV-2 (COVID-19) pandemic drastically forced millions of students, faculty, staff, and administrators into a digital world of the unknown. The unexpected perplexities of these unknown digital environments resulted in unacceptable percentages of student losses in school attendance, student academic performance, and as a result loss to local communities. One perpetual reminder this pandemic taught is that even post-COVID, educational institutions will have to rely upon remote, digital interfaces due to future challenges such as hurricanes, fires, flooding, rolling blackouts, etc. However, each of these barriers also presents new opportunities to learn and provide access to products and services such as hardware and Internet access, which will improve student success and retention.
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Main Focus - Issues, Controversies, Problems

The main issue depicted in this chapter is how the pandemic highlights how virus outbreaks, hurricanes, floods, fires, and other disasters force educational institutions to rely on online learning environments. However, many students do not have access to proper Wi-Fi and hardware to successfully participate in an online learning environment. Therefore, this chapter presents some opportunities moving forward to discover perpetual funding models for newly created open access opportunities that include hardware and Wi-Fi.

Key Terms in this Chapter

OpenStax: This platform is hosted by Rice University, and offers open educational resources textbooks, and other open access pedagogical content.

WiFi: A secured connection allowing computers, laptops, smartphones, tablets, or other devices to connect to the Internet or communicate with one another wirelessly within a particular area.

MiFi: A mobile device that facilitates wireless access by acting as a Wi-Fi hotspot.

Learning Management Systems (LMS): A software application or Web-based technology that provides course shells and digital tools (e.g., video production, educational modules, course quiz and test areas, chat features, course calendars…) for online pedagogy. LMS are implemented at colleges, universities, and at the K-12 educational levels. Common examples include Blackboard and Canvas.

Hardware: The machines, wiring, and other physical components of a computer or other electronic system. Examples are laptops, tablets, smart phones, personal computers.

Creative Commons Licenses: Provides licenses to authors and creators of work that specific how their works may be utilized, commercially, remixed, distributed, built upon, and copied.

Open Access: Information and data freely available, in digital format, in an online environment. Open access content may be restricted by some type of Creative Commons license, however, is usually less restrictive than more traditional licenses.

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