Would you like UKOER with that?
August 19, 2009 Leave a comment
Yesterday I had a chat with the learning technologist from Innovation North (faculty) about all things repository and, more specifically, UniCycle – he also brought along a faculty colleague who is exploring the best way of disseminating laboratory training videos to students via the VLE.
intraLibrary can’t stream video and I candidly pointed out that if the only requirement was to make these video tutorials available to students through the VLE then the planet eStream server would be by far the simplest solution – just upload the video to eStream and drop the URL into an X-stream module. Job done. However, there is no reason we can’t also catalogue the URL in intraLibrary and there are several potential benefits to doing so not least for ukoer – depending on IPR and licencing considerations of course, more on that in a minute.
The only question that gives me slight pause for thought is the wisdom of effectively double-cataloguing the same resource in two systems – when I was initially exploring planet eStream some time ago, it was pointed out that eStream is already a fully searchable resource and there was some resistance to double-cataloguing in this way as being inelegant. The issues are perhaps similar to the question I raised in a previous post about making ukoer available both via a local repository and JorumOpen. However, as far as I can tell, metadata attached to resources in eStream is extremely limited so why not add standardised ukoer metadata and link out to them from intralibrary – is there any practical reason why this is a bad idea?
Inelegance notwithstanding, other potential benefits of this approach are being able to search for eStream video via the VLE PowerLink and the concommitant advantage that resources catalogued in the repository aren’t restricted to an individual X-stream module. In theory, of course, there is nothing to stop a tech-savvy tutor linking out to eStream – or YouTube for that matter – to their hearts content, from the VLE, via email or from anywhere else that takes their fancy – in practice, however, they need to be able to search for a wide range of resources from a single, simple interface that is well established in the institutional infrastructure and that clearly identifies ownership and licensing – that isn’t the eStream server, or likely to be (nor is it currently the repository. Yet. But I’m working on it!)
I asked my “guest” (hostage?) what limitations, if any, faculty would like to place on access – would they wish to ensure that it was, in fact, only available to students within a specific module of X-stream or would they consider wider dissemination across the institution/sector? As I rattled on it became clear, and quite understandably, that my hostage hadn’t thought about this in any great depth and indicated that they were questions to be discussed at faculty level…
Would they consider licensing for reuse under Creative Commons? Er…what’s Creative Commons?
So, apologies to the hapless soul who just wanted to disseminate some video and found himself in my office being harangued about repositories, PowerLinks, OER, IPR and Creative Commons but this is exactly the type of interaction we need to be having with colleagues across the institution who have their own specific requirements for disseminating digital teaching and learning materials and from where we can start building cultural change for ukoer from the ground up.