#OEWeek: eCampusOntario Student Focus Webinar

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– [Woman] Yeah, within Sharelink, that’s how we’re going to (distant indistinct muttering) And I think I just disconnected from that (indistinct chattering) Of course should we bring them down? – [Chris] Hello, everyone

We will start in roughly two to three minutes

All righty, let’s get started

Can someone please confirm with me

if you can hear me speaking currently?

– Yes – I can hear you – [Chris] Perfect, thank you everyone Okay Well, good afternoon or good morning everyone Yes, it is the afternoon Welcome to the third eCampusOntario webinar as a part of Open Education Week 2019 My name is Chris, and I work for eCampusOntario, and I am the lead of student supports Very shortly you’re gonna hear from two students from the University of Guelph who are here to share their stories and experiences using open educational resources in an educational setting A bit of house keeping, this 50-minute webinar will be recorded and transcribed We are adhering to a laid back informal format, so if you do have a question, I ask that you do write your name in that chat and I shall give you the chance to speak in chronological order For those of you who may have phoned in, if you could find an opportune time to state your name, please do so and I’ll mark you down in the queue to speak We’re gonna hear from students first, but at any point if you have a question please put your name in the chat This is meant to be an open conversation or an open conversation about open From what I’ve seen, so much of the conversation around open is focused on educator empowerment If you’re an educator, you have the means to adopt, adapt and/or create open educational resources for your students With any of these entry points, like there are some significant considerations one must take into account with the use and/or conversion to openly licensed materials And what I’m trying to say is that for educators, there’s a lot to consider when designing a resource or experience that will facilitate learning And often, that’s the perspective we hear if you’re plugged into the open community But a voice that we hear very little of I find is the learner perspective That being said, we hear a lot from students advocating for OERs Recently we witnessed TextbookBroke campaigns run by the Ontario Undergraduate Student Alliance and the College Student Alliance But beyond advocacy, I find we hear very little from students about their experience actually using an OER for the classroom So I’d like to introduce two students who can help shine a light on this perspective Without further delay, I would like to introduce Ashley Fisher and Claire Maria Pec Both are actually second-year students studying molecular biology and genetics at the University of Guelph Both have actually have the opportunity to utilize an open educational resource for a course Ashley, she has a minor in English studies, but admittedly Claire, I’m not aware if you actually have a minor so you can maybe talk a little bit about that in your intro All right, to kick things off, I’m hoping you both are willing to share a little story about your experience using an OER and how that experience might have differed from a traditional textbook or publisher textbook Stop screen share All right, starting with Ashley – Hi everyone, my name’s Ashley And as Chris said, I’m a second-year student at the University of Guelph and I will unmute my video Okay, hello there Okay, so we first used an OER in my molecular, sorry, my microbiology class And the nice thing about it was that it allows you to access your resource online, which meant that you were able to Sorry, like you were able to look up everything and do what you needed to do all on your computer so you didn’t have that road block of having to carry a textbook everywhere And that was especially important to me because I actually had a shoulder injury in high school and figured out it was from having like really heavy books on my back, right? And so that’s generally, that’s one of the nice things about having an open resource is you can literally carry it with you everywhere I’m also one of those people that really likes to make flash cards with diagrams and things like that, and it’s a lot easier to just grab the diagram from your open resource textbook than it is to scan the image and all that kind of stuff Or if you wanna access some of the resources that they’re talking about in the textbook

and like one of those little boxes that says oh hey, look at this, check this out, and then maybe that textbook is from five years ago and that link is no longer valid So that’s one of those things that an open resource really limits, because that link is going to be right there and you can access it by yourself and it’s going to be up to date and you don’t have to worry about typing in a link that’s broken or that maybe you missed a letter on and it’s not going to work anymore So that’s why OERs are really important to me It’s also obviously low cost to no cost It depends if you wanna get it printed out or not, because even people that want to have that physical copy can get it printed for them at print costs So that means it’s either going to be free or you’re going to be paying maybe $30 to $60 for a textbook And that’s really important to everyone It’s also so customizable It’s co-collaborative in the sense that the prof can ask you your advice on the open resource and maybe you go into editing it I guess that’s my story about why I’m so passionate about OERs because I’ve seen, in my experience, it’s been very helpful for me and several other students – Thank you for sharing, Ashley I’m looking forward to unpacking that a bit further But without further ado, I wanna give this to Claire Claire? – Hi So like Ashley, my first experience with an OER was in the microbiology class And this was really important to me because my minor is actually microbiology, so this course really had to count The most memorable thing that I have for this book was going up to the college over Thanksgiving weekend So usually I’d have to lug my textbooks there and like, when I study I would take up all the room I can I have a textbook over here, my computer here, just everything everywhere And that’s kind of hard when you’re going up to a friend’s cottage and trying to take over their space So it was really convenient being able to just put my computer in front of me and just be able to go on the text, maybe write some notes down But it was a lot more convenient (garbled audio) than just having to lug my textbooks there, leave them (garbled audio) all around the place And the huge thing was forgetting a textbook When you’re in a rush in the morning, sometimes you forget stuff And often I’d find that I’d be forgetting textbooks And when you forget your textbook, you’re kind of lost You don’t have anything to go off of With OER, it’s just so convenient and so simple You don’t have to really think about it It’s just there for you when you need it, and it’s just an awesome resource One other thing that I really love about OER is the integrative quizzes and sample questions that you have at the bottom of them For our textbook, we would be able to do the readings and at the bottom we have a multiple choice quiz And that would kind of tell you if you understand the material or not You can also go through review slides and make sure that you truly understand everything And if not, there’s also the glossary where you can just click on a word and it will show you exactly where it is in the book It just makes learning easier and simpler I really like that about it – Thank you both for sharing I’m curious, did you have access to this textbook before the course began? Or did you get it when you first showed up? – Well, we had the previous course (garbled audio) textbook, so we both had access to it for the course (garbled audio) began the course – Right, right Oh go ahead – What I would like to add is that actually I’ve referred to open resource textbooks that haven’t been assigned for my other classes but are available in the library of where my other course textbook is available So that’s nice because you can access other ones even if you’re not in a class, so– – Perfect, thank you for sharing that So me, I work for you eCampusOntario And obviously, at eCampusOntario, we love open and we’re all about open So it’s naturally gonna be challenging for me to not disclose a bias and to really share, that like not ask loaded questions But one of the things I’m curious about, that I’m sure that other individuals on this line are also curious about is what was your reaction when you found out day one or before the class even began that you didn’t have to actually pay for the textbook? And perhaps you can also share a little bit about the reactions of your classmates and really what you saw Because you mentioned to me both early on that you never actually had heard of an OER before coming to this course So curious, what was your reaction? Tell us a little bit about that – Honestly, I was really happy Like, going into second year I kind of expected, well, you’re gonna be spending a lot of money second year Like you’re gonna have to buy more books, and they’re just so expensive It’s just so hard to be able to afford every textbook for five courses, like you’re looking at at least $1,000, and that’s not available for all students So finally being able to have an online resource that I wouldn’t have to pay $100 to even get the code to use the textbook, it was awesome – So my reaction was I was actually

a little bit opposite of Claire I was a little concerned that I wouldn’t have the chance to have a paper copy until my professor actually said that oh, we’ll print (overlapping dialogue) at cost for you, which then I was really excited because I was thinking I am one of those people that likes to hold the pages in their hand I don’t own a kindle, and maybe that kind of shows through my English minor, I don’t know I realize that it it’s easier to have the online textbook and I actually got very used to the resource, and I realized that there’s a lot of more beneficial things than just having the physical pages in your hand But it was comforting to know that they cared enough that they would actually give you the book at cost You know what I mean? And that’s not necessarily an option, and it’s also really important that we have those cost-effective solutions, especially because there’s been (mumbles) and there’s lots of student loans that we have to worry about And so it’s really one less thing that I have to worry about at least for this class, is dropping $200 on a textbook – Very interesting Thank you for sharing that Was there any description of like what an OER was when you first registered? Or was there any confusion that was really led or created from jumping and enrolling in this course? – Well, it was actually very new, the OER resource We were told that just basically not to buy the textbook that was suggested in the course outline because they were developing a textbook and we’d be using that instead – Sorry to interrupt, there was an actual textbook that was suggested– – Yes there’s was a suggested textbook, and then we were told don’t buy that, don’t buy that, we’re going to implement this open resource So we actually knew nothing about it, and we thought that we’d be having a paper textbook coming into the course So that was a really pleasant surprise once we realized that we wouldn’t have to pay anything – That’s very interesting, and I think it does say something actually, that there was the stipulation or at least a request not to actually purchase this textbook Very, very interesting Thank you for sharing that So this is totally a loaded question because again we do have a bias towards open, but what would you say is your favorite part about using an OER beyond simply the cost savings? And share the least favorite part too We’ll get a little bit unpacking sort of some of the issues that you discussed with me But curious, like what was your favorite part about OER? – So my favorite part was the interactive quizzes I really learn I’m more of a kinetic learner, so I learn by doing, by rewriting and just being engaged It’s very hard to just read something and digest it for me, so when you’re able to have that access to the quizzes, it was really, really helpful and made sure that I understand the material I also love the ability to just, if I didn’t understand something, rather than trying to flip through the pages, I could go to the glossary, I could go to the index and just find exactly what I was looking for It’s just the convenience, I love the convenience so much for it One downside I have to it is just the fear of, okay, well, what if my computer stops working? I hope I can go to the library So that’s like good, it’s just not as secure as having a textbook right in front of me I know that my textbook is like not just gonna stop working So that’s one downside I have with it – [Chris] Right, the dependence on technology then Right, thank you for sharing that – Did you wanna comment, Ashley? – Oh, yes of course My favorite part of the open resources is that there’s, it can be customizable And this isn’t necessarily as much of a problem for me but for example I kind of friend in high school that she was very dyslexic and in our academic math class, she would have to get the teacher to blow up her tests so that the numbers were much bigger so that she could read the test quicker and she wouldn’t jumble up the numbers and the words And if she were to have to read a textbook, that wouldn’t be an option for her She couldn’t just get all 400 pages blown up for her So when you have an online resource, like an open resource textbook, it actually gives you an option to make the font bigger, right? So now, for her, that’s a lot easier because it’s easier for her to digest the information And also, there’s a text-to-speech function for people that are visually impaired So I like that it appeals to all people and not just a certain group of people that don’t have the same kind of disabilities – [Chris] Fascinating So I mean, you mentioned that you had a friend who was dyslexic and that the OER actually provided that sort of accessibility requirement But did you, I mean, you’ve also sort of mentioned that the customization of an OER was really an advantage for you, and I kind of wanna unpack that a little bit further I mean, obviously, a traditional textbook, you have a bound version most typically or perhaps a digital version, but it’s not so customizable in a lot of (mumbles) so kind of unpacking that a little bit further, like what was it about the customization that you really, really utilized with the ecourse, not necessarily what you want

or what you enjoyed, but what did you actually find using the most with actually adapting some of these resources? – I did make the text bigger or smaller I also use the function– (overlapping dialogue) Pardon me? – [Chris] Oh, I’m just saying right, right – And I also used like the search function So you could search the entire textbook and first single word that maybe you didn’t understand, and that gives you that word and every single chapter possible where it’s mentioned and that’s really nice because instead of flipping to an index, where sometimes the index has missed that or (garbled audio) I guess that’s some sort of like something that you might consider customizable – [Chris] Very cool Did you wanna comment on that, Claire? – I kind of use the audio option quite often because I also learn from Sorry, Ashley, would you mind muting your mic? – Oh yeah – Thank you, sorry Oh, I was on mute I found that using the audio function was very helpful because I do learn through kinetic learning but also audio And to be able to hear the words, and with this course there’s a lot of micro names that are hard to pronounce, so I’m not gonna lie, sometimes I would just use that function strictly to be able to hear how to (garbled audio) the correct pronunciation Also for figures and stuff, it was really good to be able to actually zoom in, because you can’t really do it on textbook You can’t zoom in to actually see each and every little aspect of it, so being able to do so made it a lot easier to understand the figures and go through them So yeah, that’s pretty much what I use the accessible features for – [Chris] So beyond really the classic, which is obviously a huge advantage for most students, I mean, it really sounds like, if I’m summarizing what you’re saying is really the ability to not just customize but actually take your resource and utilize it at multiple different formats is something I’m guessing (garbled audio) of huge benefit to you and your learning Is that correct? – Yeah, I would say that’s correct – So within the open community, oh, I have my video turned off here, hello everyone, within the open community, I’m sure everyone is aware there’s been a notion or a conversation on quality, which is that there is a perception amongst some that OERs aren’t really at the same quality as traditional textbooks and whatnot And so I’m really curious, like from your experience in this one OER that you used, was there any sort of quality concerns? Was there anything maybe related to the images or the text that would kind of scream sort of a lower quality nature? I guess, you obviously have some experience with traditional textbooks, and what were those sort of core differences, and did you notice anything really in terms of quality, whether that’s calling it images or text or how things are laid out or anything of that matter? (overlapping dialogue) Okay, there was one issue that some Mac users had with some of the diagrams We weren’t actually able to see them I’m not quite sure why it arose, it was fixed, but that was only the sort of quality issue Besides that, like the information is just displayed so clearly, and it’s kind of like clean and cut Like with textbooks, I would find trying to read it, it’s also condensed Like you have text here, text here, a figure here, a figure there Well, with EDRs, it’s just one thing at a time rather than trying to multi-task and have your eyes going everywhere I found it very, very clean and good – [Chris] I’m guessing you utilize the search function quite often – Yes – Very interesting – [Chris] Oh, I’m just unmuting you, Ashley – There we go, sorry It’s my first time doing a webinar (overlapping dialogue)– – [Chris] No problem, you’re doing great – So what I found really useful about the diagrams and the text and everything is that like it was really clear and concise Like OERs offer the professor or the instructor or whoever is developing the course the ability to edit and develop their textbook by themselves So honestly, the course that I’ve been using my OER for, I’ve found that I’ve never had to look past the textbook for any sort of information It’s always been clear, concise, exactly what I needed to hear and exactly the way the professor has been presenting it I found that the quality has been much better than textbooks I’ve had to drop $300 on, and so much more convenient And it kind of made me feel silly for dropping so much money on textbooks all those other times because I was like wow, this resource is so much better and I actually started reaching out to other OER resources online for my different courses that didn’t offer one but I did find the textbook as useful just because the information is usually presented so much better because it seems like there’s been more time and care almost put into it

by the people that have been developing those courses made to teach that exact set of content – [Chris] Thank you very much for sharing that There’s a lot to unpack there actually, but I realize I’ve been talking for the majority of the time here in terms of questions We must have some questions from the audience Does anyone wanna ask a question or a point of clarification for Claire or Ashley in the chat? Give someone at least 30 seconds here (keyboard clacking) I hear some typing microphones (chuckles) So I’m curious, Ashley and Claire I mean, you’ve just finished the course, right? The microbiology course you mentioned Is that correct? – No, we’re still enrolled in it – [Chris] You’re still enrolled in it Okay, interesting Well, I’m assuming you’ve probably have talked to some of your friends about the fact that you haven’t had, or you never actually had to purchase a textbook And I’m sure you’ve had these conversations I’m curious, like, is anyone that you’re aware of that actually been really jealous, almost like interested in actually enrolling in this course because of an OER? The question really is, is like are you aware of any students that have gravitated towards this course simply because the course was using an OER? – Well, I have lots of friends who have been jealous of the fact that OERs aren’t implemented in their class Like, our class is one of the first classes on campus to have this resource available to their students It’s also a core class, so people that aren’t in the program don’t really take this class And also, you have to take it if you are enrolled in the program So I wouldn’t say that anyone’s gravitated towards the class simply because of that kind of road block, but I have had friends available, sorry, friends that are in other courses that really wish that this resource was available to them, or have been like, hey, where do you think I could find like an online textbook that’s free for material in my class that they’ve had a harder time understanding or maybe they weren’t able to actually purchase the textbook in their class for because it’s so expensive, or the library didn’t have a copy or the bookstore sometimes doesn’t get copies of the textbook for a couple of months, you know what I mean, because they’ll be on back order? – [Chris] Right, right – So I have been able to send them a link to the kind of table of contents of all the resources that are available to them so that they can find one that kind of matches their course – [Chris] Very fascinating, interesting Did you wanna comment, Claire, or no comment? – Yeah A lot of my friends have actually not been able to take a course or buy the textbook for a course because it was so expensive Like I had one friend and she was taking an online course but had to buy eight actual textbooks, which I kind of found, that’s kind of redundant but she had to buy the actual hard textbook and she wasn’t able to do it because of the expense And because of that, her grades really suffered Like, you do need the textbook to learn A lot of profs make the textbook an essential part of the entire course So that was very like tough for them And I have had friends who were kind of jealous, like oh, you don’t have all these textbooks in front of you Are you even doing any work? Like yeah, it’s all on my laptop! And another experience I actually had was in one of my online courses we had to get a textbook, and there was an online textbook that we could purchase But to purchase the textbook, it was about $120 each and it’s really hard for some students to be able to do that Like, school is expensive, we know that But to have to put forward that much money for a course that you’re already enrolled in and it’s just, it’s very, very hard for some students to be able to afford to buy the textbook they need in order to do well on the course – [Chris] Thank you for sharing, Claire Yeah, I mean, we can’t pretend that we’ve all heard stories of students finding creative ways to access some of these textbooks Not OERs that is, but like we’ve heard stories of students photocopying things and it’s an unfortunate, this is a reality but it’s very much a situation for students who cannot afford this type of resource or just don’t have the means to really pay for all these often mandatory course support So questions from Lanna Hall I wanna give you a chance, Lanna, to ask your question Lanna, taking it to you Okay, perhaps Lanna didn’t hear that Lanna Hall asked, how enthusiastic do you find most profs are about using OER? Do you see any resistance? I know your experience is a bit limited with OER

as Claire and Ashley, but did you really see a lot of enthusiasm with your prof with the course you’re taking? – Well, I actually met a prof yesterday that’s in the process of implementing OER into her course Like, they’re developing the textbook currently right now I had no clue, but I’m actually enrolled in one of the courses that they’re trying to develop textbook for And she said that there’s not necessarily any resistance It’s just about finding funding so that the funding can kind of keep the program that they’re trying to implement the resource and like that can keep that program afloat kind of thing But I find that basically the professor seemed to be really caring towards the students and really care about developing the course And any professor I’ve met that’s willing to do that obviously really cares about their students and everything, so I’ve seen that anyone that’s interested in implementing an OER, they understand it’s going to be a lot of work, but they’re really interested in the well-being and the time that it’s going to save students – [Chris] Thank you, thank you Claire, did you wanna add anything or no? – Yes With our professor, I found that she’s been nothing but enthusiastic for this course Using the textbook is a real, this EDR, ODR, is very important to her She really wants us to do well in the course, and she knows that by getting us all (garbled audio) we’ll be able to do well She’s always asked us, do you have any feedback? Please let me know, because she really wants us to be (garbled audio) so she wants nothing more than for us to go for it (garbled audio) more courses and be more accessible to students, which I think is really great – [Chris] Definitely, definitely I’m seeing a question from Nydia, if I’m pronouncing your name correctly Nydia, Nidia, Nidia Cernia, do you wanna ask your question? – [Nydia] Hi everyone – [Chris] Hello, Nydia – [Nydia] Hi So yes, I find it very valuable what you are explaining about the quality of content that you find in OERs that you’re using And just wondering, you spoke also about the economic benefit from using an open book, so can you maybe (mumbles) other advantages of using open resources? I’d be very interested in terms of the quality in that did you find that an OER has the lowest quality of content or not at all? – [Chris] For those who might not have heard, Nydia’s question was, aside from the economic benefit of open texts, like what were other advantages from your point of view, stressing really the conversation on quality Perhaps, Claire and Ashley, you can maybe talk a little bit about something you haven’t mentioned yet or maybe summarizing some of what you’ve already mentioned to answer that question – Okay Well, I actually have, there’s an impairment that doesn’t allow me to move my eyes left to right So it’s very hard for me to scan a textbook And with ODR, I’m able to blow the text up and kind of move it along with my fingers rather than just having to stare at it My eyes get very confused when I’m looking at either side of a textbook because it takes a lot of effort for me to read things It strains my eyes a lot So being able to blow this up has made it very accessible for me and very accessible for other students with vision impairments So I find that very important as you know, sometimes I would not read a textbook because my eyes and head would hurt too much afterwards But with ODR, I can blow it up, look at it directly and I don’t really have to take many breaks because I’m able to see it or I can listen to it if my eyes or head start hurting So I find that a really important part to it for me – [Chris] Thank you for sharing that – Like I said before, I really like making clean and nice-looking notes, and I really like making flash cards and stuff like that too And I use an online program to create my flash cards, and it’s a lot easier to import the image into my flash card and things like that because images are very important, especially microbiology when you’re trying to look at very complex, small details of a cell And it’s a lot easier to actually implement that diagram into my flash cards or into my notes to make it look cleaner and everything than it is to try and draw it by hand, which could take a lot longer and not necessarily provide me with any academic benefit So that makes it a lot better for me I also like using the functions like making the text bigger or smaller, like how it’s customizable

And I like that I don’t have to carry a heavy backpack with three textbooks in it, and I can access all of the information for this course online because like I said, I ended up contracting a shoulder injury from carrying too heavy of a backpack So I have to be very careful about that now – [Chris] Wow So really, to summarize both of what you’re saying, it’s the accessibility I guess and the flexibility of these resources were a huge advantage for you from a learner standpoint Very, very fascinating Seeing a question from Lindsey Woodside Lindsey, do you wanna ask your question? Oh, I believe you are muted, Lindsey Oh, we can hear you now – You can hear me okay? – [Chris] Yes – Okay, perfect Hi everyone, my name’s Lindsey I’m one of the youth (garbled audio) to the eCampusOntario team Thanks so much, Ashley and Claire, for sharing your insights this afternoon I’m just curious, if you’d used an open resource previously, have you revisited that text in any capacity as of yet? And if not, would you consider revisiting the text if you need to source, for instance, a citation or cite a concept or a term again in another course? (overlapping dialogue) – I would genuinely, yeah, I would genuinely access this material again I haven’t had the chance to access it again or revisit it because this textbook has been used for both of my microbiology courses to date, the one last semester and the one this semester But I know next semester if I’m doing something related to this content that doesn’t have this particular textbook assigned, I will definitely revisit it again because there’s a lot of clear and concise definitions that I haven’t been able to find anywhere else I find it really easy, it’s almost put into clean speak There’s not really any room for jargon in the textbook, and I found that a lot of other textbooks aren’t clearly as good at putting in the information to like such understandable terms – [Lindsey] Thank you – I actually have gone back to the textbook for another course With our program, a lot of ideas overlap, so we are kind of learning, building on the same concepts So if I didn’t have the best proper course last semester and I wasn’t really understanding their lectures slides and there wasn’t a textbook to really go off of, or the textbook wasn’t really that supplementary, so I actually just typed in what I was looking for and there it popped up, and it was very easy for me to, one, figure out what I was learning; and then two, access it Like, it was in a matter of seconds I had it there in front of me – [Chris] Very, very cool – [Lindsey] Excellent, that’s great, thank you – [Chris] Thank you for that question, Lindsey I mean, yeah, that’s one of the amazing things about OERs, is you can retain it beyond the course, right? I mean, you can do that with any textbook you purchase You often find, like you either wanna resell it or you really give it away And for me, personally, I almost developed a relationship with some of the textbooks because you spend so much time learning and memorizing and going through this I just, for me, I’ve kept most of my textbooks from my university and college experience And it’s now just sitting there basically in my apartment taking up space And I can’t find really the heart to get rid of them because I spent so much time immersing myself in its content and whatnot For me, personally, I wish I had access to an OER because that wouldn’t have to live in a physical spaces This could live digitally, and I can just search it up in my laptop very quickly So yeah, part of our Lindsey’s question I guess is really like would you actually go back to this resource? For me, personally, I would Thank you both for sharing that Do we have any other questions from the audience? Again, all you have to do is state your name You don’t have to ask the question in the chat Just state your name and I will get to you So, Claire, you mentioned part of what you really enjoyed with an OER was the interactivity, the kind of module-based learning And I think that’s an important distinction because most, a lot of individuals, when they think about OERs, they naturally just, their mind assumes or jumps towards a textbook, right? And that’s not necessarily what an OER is An open educational resource is not necessarily just a textbook And so I kind of wanna unpack, it might not be the most relevant for this conversation, but I wanna understand a little bit further about what was it with that interactivity that you sort of really enjoyed, and like what was it about that experience that you could share with this group that you really thought was very beneficial to your learning that other individuals on the line might be able to adopt or take insight from? – The main concept for me was that ODR is so much more

than just a textbook Being able to do those quizzes really helped me to see if I understood the material because a lot of times, students just will read something and like we forget it, it just goes right out of our mind after doing it It’s when we study and go over it, that’s when you memorize it, you learn it So being able to do that quiz afterwards and telling me how much I actually retained would let me know, yeah, okay, you need to read over this again; or yeah, you can move on to the next step And one thing I found is that it wasn’t these huge chunks of information being thrown at me It was small to medium-sized sections and then quizzing on that And then you could go in the next section And then at the end of the chapter, there was a big quiz and a review sheet and all of this stuff, and it literally tells you what you need to learn It’s not just this guessing game where you go oh no, I don’t think I’ll be tested on that, I don’t need to know that Since your prof is making this and you know that, it’s going to be what you need to learn So I found it really helpful – [Chris] Thank you, thank you I will say so this as a reminder, this session is being recorded And if anyone is uncomfortable actually asking a question or identifying their names, you are free to message me privately and I will not use your name and I won’t say the question I’m seeing a question here from the Teaching and Learning Innovations Center I believe it’s Humber I don’t see the full text Do you wanna ask your question? Okay So the question, I’m actually seeing it in the chat, was or is, do you find the textbooks well-designed from a local context perspective? Are they relevant to you in your region? And also, do you think they’re well-designed for multi-lingual learners? So unpacking that question, I mean, a part of the beauty of OER is you can localize it to your environment, right? If you’re using a publisher textbook from United States, like examples that are used in the text might not be super relevant and applicable for you So did you find that this text specifically was localized and relevant in terms of an Ontario or even a Canadian perspective? – I found that it was, and I know that a big draw for a lot of professors or course creators looking to create an OER is that it’s a lot easier to implement Canadian content, Canadian studies for their own or their colleague’s research that they find relevant to the course material When I was talking about OERs with a professor that was interested in implementing it in the class yesterday, when I was hearing her perspective, she said that that was one of the big things that drew her towards trying to develop an OER was that you could actually more easily find and implement Canadian content because unfortunately, that’s a lot harder to find in regular publications – Yeah, I’d agree with that It’s very based on you and the surrounding world around you rather than just the surrounding world, like it’s very easy to make it just more about, I don’t wanna make it sound selfish but more about us, like more about our country and more about what we need to learn that will actually help us if we are to go on to jobs in this country and yeah, I find it very localized – [Chris] Thank you for sharing So in addition to that question, do you think that this OER, at least the one you used, was well designed for a multi-lingual learners? – I know that there are lots of text-to-speech functions and that sort of thing I never really looked to see if there was a multi-lingual function If that’s something that the asker would be interested in knowing, like I could for sure try and check it out right now and see if I could find something about that or at a later date and I could let Chris know and he could tell you, but I’m not sure off the top of my head because I’ve never had to utilize a function like that – [Chris] Thank you, Ashley You wanna add something, Claire, or should– – Yeah, just the voice to text function would be really helpful for those who are multilingual I’m just (mumbles) not sure about the multilingual function as well, so that would be something that I’d have to further explore as well – [Chris] Right, okay So another question from Lana from eCampusOntario, her audio is not working but she is curious about what other forms of OER do you think would be helpful besides just the text? Like videos or online forums to discuss with other students, or maybe even virtual reality? What is it you think that would really be helpful in terms of, beyond the textbook that is? – I think that videos would be extremely helpful A lot of students struggle with understanding concepts,

and sometimes a textbook just isn’t enough to really understand it Like a lot of people need practical examples So being able to have video tutorials and obviously even more quizzing and I think that’d be really helpful, and I think that be a good next step maybe – [Chris] Thank you, thank you – I also agree with having videos in the function, like in the text available as a function That would be really interesting And I find YouTube videos, for example, very helpful So having videos implemented into the text that are actually meant to go with the text and what you’re learning would be extremely helpful And I’ve never used anything like VR so I’m not totally sure if that would help me But I’m sure that there are kids that would really love that (Chris chuckles) – [Chris] So I see another question in the chat that’s a bit of a point of clarification I kind of wrongly asked the question so the question about multi-lingual speakers, I guess to clarify, was really If you imagine yourself as like an international student, right, and English is not your first language, did you find the contents really kind of digest or would you think that you would find the content digestible if English wasn’t your first language? Or was it almost very localized where you might be at a disadvantage because you are not a native English speaker? Does that make sense, that question? – I actually do have friends that are international students and they haven’t said anything about the text being too localized to the point that they can’t understand it or anything They found it very easy to understand And I also find it easy to understand I know maybe I’m biased because English is my first language, but I do know some people that English isn’t their first language and they also found it easy to digest and they haven’t complained about it – Yeah, I agree with that And also just the ability to like if you don’t understand something, you could simply copy/paste and put it into Google and it can make it more sense for you It’s a lot easier than having a textbook and having to fully decipher it I believe that this would be a lot more accessible to multi-lingual students because it is so much more easier and simpler – [Chris] Very interesting Very, very interesting actually Do we have any other questions from the audience? Oh, we have some from Lillian So Lillian is wondering if you can show, Lillian is also working for eCampusOntario, her microphone is also not working, she’s wondered if you could choose one course you’ve taken to replace a traditional textbook with an OER, which course would you choose? – Looking back? Almost every single one of them to be honest I mean, maybe that’s not the case for some of my English courses because you kind of need the physical copies of the books, but almost every science course that I’ve taken, I can honestly say I would have benefit way more from an open resource textbook It’s just so much more easy to use It would cut back a lot of time of just trying to search, like what the heck does this mean when I could just use the search function and find it on 15 different pages in the textbook than instead of maybe the two-page ranges that the index in my textbook offers me So I mean, that comes from chemistry class, almost every single biology class I’ve taken and biochemistry, genetics, anything like that I find that these OER resources would have been so helpful for everything I’ve been in – Yeah, I completely agree with that I would much rather have had online resource for all of the courses that I’ve had, specifically right now I’m in organic chemistry and if I had this resource, I think that it’d be a lot easier to be able to find practice questions because that’s one thing that I’m finding right now is I have the PDF version of the textbook and it’s not the same as what I have for this micro course Like the ODR that I have for my micro course gives me all of these resources and it’s so much more clear while I kind of feel like I get lost in some of my other textbooks It’s just too much to take in and there’s not enough of what I’m actually looking for There’s just a lot of extra stuff added, which is great It’s great to have examples and stuff, but sometimes it’s just too much for us to all take in at once, so I would much rather have had an ODR for all of my courses And the environmental impact as well, like that’s a very concerning issue now It’s global warming, everything and anything we can do to help with that would be at the top of my list – [Chris] Thank you both for sharing So I’m seeing one more question here Oh okay, not a question So, Ashley, in our initial conversations

you mentioned that the prof allowed you or even created an opportunity for students to actually contribute to the content I mean, that’s the beauty again of OER, is that the content can be amenable and it can change, it can evolve out through time I’m curious, from your perspective specifically, (mumbles) this can obviously depend on who you’re talking to but would you welcome an opportunity to actually cocreate with OER or to actually provide feedback to improve this? Because a part of the things that we do at eCampusOntario is really encourage this type of cocreation between students and faculty because you’re the end users of education, right? You know what’s not conducive to your learning and what just doesn’t work and what does work And so I’m curious, would this opportunity be a benefit to you? And would you want to be involved more in the actual design of the content or the advancement of the content? – I would completely jump on an opportunity like that Education is something I’m extremely passionate about and course material creation and that sort of thing That’s actually kind of a career, well, it is my career goal to help contribute to education And if I could do something like that, that’s something I would be absolutely ecstatic about So I think that offering students that opportunity would be amazing – [Chris] Thank you I’m seeing I think maybe a question, but also it might be pitched as a joke Regardless, it’s funny From Olga, it’s saying how would you feel about writing content for a textbook? That’s (garbled audio) I just asked So sorry, Olga – Well, I would love to do that, Olga (garbled audio) – [Chris] Okay, trying to be mindful of the time It has been 50 minutes I wanna thank you both for sharing these perspectives Is there any other questions from the audience that you would like to ask? Okay, well thank you all for, oh wait, I do have a question, so sorry From Milla, if your instructor were to ask you if you would be willing to help write or adapt an OER for a future course, would you be interested? And what would the topic you’d most likely, what would you be most interested to write about? So I’ve already sort of asked the first question, but the second part – I would really like that opportunity I feel like getting a student’s perspective would really actually help as we are the ones that are taking the course and we’re the ones that are using this resource If I could do anything, I would do obviously choose a science course I would do (garbled audio) – I would be probably most interested in either micro or molecular biology, genetics or human genetics That’s something I love as well – [Chris] Yeah, I’m guessing if you had the opportunity to actually write about the subjects and actually contribute to some of these open educational resources in the domain or discipline that you’re studying, like that would be very beneficial for your own learning reflection – Yeah, of course – Exactly I would just also love to help out students that are going to go through the course, like I’ve been in their shoes so I understand what maybe they really struggled with and if I can help maybe the five other students that might struggle with the same thing, And obviously you can’t create a perfect resource Someone’s always not gonna totally understand what you’re saying, but maybe if I can help five more people even, like oh, that’s great and I don’t have to go down the same YouTube hole that I went down, that would be amazing – Yeah, being able to help someone that was in our position would be we know what it was like to be that student, to be confused and to be scared Like, university is scary It’s all this information being thrown at you And to be able to help a student would be, you know, may feel pretty good – [Chris] Thank you very much for sharing that In an alternate universe, if you had an opportunity to be on a webinar and speaking to individuals who might be very interested in actually adopting, creating or using an OER, what would you like to say to these people who might be interested in using an OER as a professor? – I understand that it’s going to be a lot of work, but if you’re already considering it, you clearly care about your students enough to actually go through the amount of work that it will take And I’m just going to say like you will be probably one of my favorite professors We will totally have so much time, and that would be a very kind thing for you to do And I’m sure it’ll also look good on your academic little, not resume but compilation of things that you’ve done (Chris chuckles) – Thank you, Ashley – Yeah, no, I completely agree As students, we appreciate this more than you know We appreciate all the work that you guys put into these courses and quizzes and everything And to take the next step and do an ODR,

we’d just be so thankful It’s so helpful to us and makes learning easier And honestly, it makes (garbled audio) makes being in school a lot more worthwhile So I’d say, please do it – [Chris] Well, everyone, you’ve heard it from students Please do it (laughter) I wanna thank you both for sharing your perspective I think we’re at a critical juncture in the province where open is becoming more prominent and more people are aware that these type of things exist They have surely a lot of benefits for both the students and the people actually, or the instructors So thank you both for sharing your experience and shining the light on the actual opportunity to use an OER for (garbled audio) I wanna remind everyone quickly that this session has been recorded and then a copy of this and slides will be available on that YouTube, or the eCampusOntario YouTube channel following Open Ed Week And Ashley and Claire, if you’re both comfortable, I would like to share your email with perhaps some of the participants if they are interested– (overlapping dialogue) – Of course, that’s wonderful – [Chris] Okay, well thank you all for joining and thank you Claire and Ashley – Thank you very much – [Chris] Take care everyone, and enjoy the rest of the Open Ed webinars – [Claire] Thank you