Discussion Papers

Are you a researcher with interest in innovation and quality in the field of learning? Or an e-learning practitioners who is inspired by online discussions on quality management in your field? EFQUEL encourages you to openly comment on our discussion papers, which are candidates for the inclusion into the INNOQUAL inaugural journal to be published in April 2013.

  • Inspire and support discussion paper authors; and
  • Engage in a topic centred-discussion in your field of interest

Please make sure to first read our short guidelines to make the open review a valuable experience for your and the discussion paper authors.

Join in with your comments and reflections on the discussion papers

INNOQUAL invites comments on the most recent manuscripts below. These undergo a dedicated peer review is organized at the same time and reviewers are invited to read/reflect on the open comments. The earliest date for manuscript publication is summer 2014. Please see the INNOQUAL themes to learn more or click here for the timeline of the next publication:

Submissions to the INNOQUAL themes

What Makes Open Education Thrive?: Examination of Factors Contributing to the Success of Open Education Initiatives As the world has come to recognize the importance of open education initiatives, there have been numerous discussions on their impacts on our learning. However, researchers and educators seldom discuss standards and methods that can be used to identify and evaluate each initiative in terms of its success. This paper tries to address the importance of recognizing factors affecting the success of open education initiatives by analyzing established initiatives around the world. Through the analysis, it found six factors across three categories: organizational factors (brand/reputation, and funding), pedagogical factors (focus of subjects, and interactivity), and social factors (social view of open education, and localization). JoinDiscussionButton_03
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Internet and social media communication skills: addressing the needs of LLP project teams(Revised manuscript) The effective use of Internet and social media tools and their embeddedness in a communication strategy are becoming fundamental to the success of cross-border cooperation projects, such as those subsidized by the Lifelong Learning Programme (LLP) of the European Commission. This paper reports on the results of a Europe-wide survey on skills needed by members of LLP projects in order to communicate their project results and engage with the target audience.
The results of the survey show trends in the use of social media based digital communication strategies, as well as areas in which development of skills is needed. They also allow us to identify digital communication opportunities that are of interest in the context of dissemination of project results despite the fact that little attention is drawn to them by survey respondents. We discuss how the findings of the needs analysis have been used in the design of the training components (materials and courses, face-to-face and online). We conclude with some priority activities that we believe are needed at policy-making level, to allow project results to increase their visibility and impact.
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How to Promote the Usage of Digital Media in Scientific Further Education Promoting the usage of digital media in academic further education requires to rethink institutions of higher education in three points: the organizational structures, incentive instruments and staff development. Within these fields the project Q2P – as a service unit – takes place. JoinDiscussionButton_03
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Quality assurance of higher education: National trends of development and accreditation in Kazakhstan The article deals with current trends of development of quality issues in higher education. Due to the introduction of the latest educational strategies in Kazakhstan higher educational institutions have to improve its quality due to new challenges at national and international context and also develop the system of change management in order to build better strategies for current reforms. Accreditation is considered as one of the most effective instruments of measuring quality. Accreditation criteria and requirements can be taken as one of the effective methods for creation a system of internal and external quality assessment. Current educational standards have to be replaced by national quality standards. System of quality control has to be transformed into the system of improvement and development. JoinDiscussionButton_03
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Open Educational Resources: Special Demands on Quality The very central idea behind Open Educational Resources (OERs) is opening up the access to learning resources for stakeholders who were not the originally targeted users. This concept must be understood as highly innovative, because it describes a general economic and social paradigm shift: Education that formerly was limited to a particular (privileged) group of learners is now understood as a public good. In this context, it already is a remarkable achievement when authors and publishers make their contents available for the public and invite the community to freely reuse the educational resources. However, the usefulness of such resources actually often keeps limited to the originally targeted context because the context itself is not sufficiently described and/or appropriateness of the resources regarding other contexts is unclear. … [Read Full Abstract] JoinDiscussionButton_03
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Joint Digital Library of Open Educational Resources of Russian Universities The paper provides substantial information on an educational Internet project “Single-Entry Window” aimed at integration of open educational resources of Russian universities and other educational institutions. The main components of the portal are an electronic catalogue of educational Internet resources and an open digital library of learning and methodical materials. The brief history and conceptual aspects of the project, the software functionality, the informational components, the structure of metadata, the questions of content management including the approach for resources collecting and evaluating are described and discussed. JoinDiscussionButton_03
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Learning and Work: How Innovations and Competence Development support the Learning Quality at Workplaces (The revised manuscript will be linked from here soon)

 

Discussion papers submitted to special call “Quality in MOOCs”

Academics’ Perceptions on the Quality of MOOCs: An Empirical Study Massive Open Online Courses, or MOOCs, have become a global phenomenon. Tens of thousands of people have enrolled into free online courses provided by some of the world’s most prestigious universities. As they are such a recent creation, discussion about the value and the operation of MOOCs has been predominately in the general media and academic blogosphere. Many of those who have been pontificating about the good (or evil) of MOOCs have been doing so without having experienced one as a participant or organiser. This paper investigates the views of academics who participated as students in a MOOC. A survey and follow up focus group of academics are used to discuss the pedagogical design and also the broader implications that MOOCs have for the tertiary education sector. JoinDiscussionButton_03
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Introducing MOOCs to Middle European Universities – is it worth it to accept the challenge? The paper deals with necessary requirements to implement MOOCs at European universities, by the example of Austria. As the respective general conditions and business environments are obviously different from the university system in the United States the analysis of advantages and obstacles of offering MOOCs is done from a local point of view including lecturers’ and students’ perspectives as well as necessary preconditions that have to be established by the universities and the government. Thereby, challenges in the fields of content creation, the supply of MOOCs, the assessment of knowledge and the development of business models are pointed out and discussed. JoinDiscussionButton_03
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UNX: A Latin American Community of Knowledge for Entrepreneurship UnX is an innovative knowledge community for entrepreneurship that promotes open education and entrepreneurial skills online in Spain, Portugal and Latin America. UnX is based on the delivery of MOOCs with open and flexible content from websites, wikis, OERs and social networks, which can be scaled up to respond to demand. Learning is based on the knowledge acquired from the community and individuals working together (social and peer-to-peer learning), while the activities draw on a challenge and game-based methodology.
Unemployees from Europe and Latin America, students, young people as well as entrepreneurs, investors or everyone interested in entrepreneurship can find all kind of open courses and resources in unX.
The unX platform is now integrated in a Personal Learning Environment (PLE) aggregator called Colmenia, and it will also be optimized for mobile devices, so that users can take all the opportunities to learn−on the bus, train, at home, etc. More than 30.000 entrepreneurs are enrolled in unX currently.
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The OpenupEd quality label: benchmarks for MOOCs In this paper we report on the development of the OpenupEd Quality Label, a self-assessment and review quality assurance process for the new European OpenupEd portal (www.openuped.eu) for MOOCs (massive open online courses). This process is focused on benchmark statements that seek to capture good practice, both at the level of the institution and at the level of individual courses. The benchmark statements for MOOCs are derived from benchmarks produced by the E-xcellence e-learning quality projects (E-xcellencelabel.eadtu.eu/). A process of self-assessment and review is intended to encourage quality enhancement, captured in an action plan. We believe that a quality label for MOOCs will benefit all MOOC stakeholders JoinDiscussionButton_03
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Pedagogy of MOOCs MOOC’s have attracted huge attention, and hype, for supporting massive enrollments and for being free. What has received less attention is the pedagogical aspects of MOOCs. How can MOOCs effectively teach thousands of students simultaneously? JoinDiscussionButton_03
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Further papers are under preparation to allow for open comments and will appear here soon

  • Recommendations for Quality for Massive open Online Courses

Archived Discussion Papers