Reflections on Topic 2: Open Learning – Sharing and Openness

Now, it has been sometime since my last post. However, I have been thinking a lot about it, just could not find time to sit down and do the actual writing. And here is an interesting reflection on (my)self – I actually look forward to the writing, and it has become a way of relaxing and “landing” all the thoughts, ideas and reflections that jump around in my mind 🙂

This topic started some interesting discussions in my group. I see the topic divided in two, one part about the regulations, ethics and use related to using digital material and resources, and the second regarding the openness of self, colleagues and others to share own material to the world outside. My reflections in this blogpost will be regarding the last, i.e., openness in my own context. While I like to use open resources I find on the Internet, and appreciate them a lot, I find it quite challenging to share my own material. I sometimes hesitate sharing. During this course, I have had the chance to reflect on my hesitations. And I asked myself some very honest questions, for instance, is it because: (1) I am afraid someone will “steal” my work or ideas; (2) that it is not good enough; (3) that it is embarrassing to share, someone might criticize it; (4) it was not meant to be shared; or (5) not relevant nor interesting for those outside the course. While it is difficult to point out one specific reason, I am quite sure that the reason behind my hesitations is not the first one. Rather a mix of the rest. In particular, making material open which I on beforehand had not decided should be open feels challenging, this I believe would be easier when I know it will be open. Also, making some of the material (that may appeal to a larger audience) open makes more sense than making the entire course open. Most importantly, the feeling of putting myself “out there” feels uncomfortable. Yet, I am sure there are ways of keeping oneself more “invisible”, emphasizing the core of the material. In the end, having these questions in mind, the most important take-home message for myself is that I need to be better at sharing to contribute, and not only be one that uses what others make open.

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