Open Education (OpenEdu)

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The growth of Open Education has led many European universities to reconsider their institutional strategies. It has added to the pressure on higher education institutions in Europe to innovate in teaching and learning practices in order not to lose their competitive edge.

Universities have perceived the need to innovate, though they may or may not have engaged with new learning formats.  Nearly every day new acronyms come out (such as OEP, MOOCs, SPOCs, TORQUES etc.) indicating the variety of approaches and the scope of experimentation with new pedagogical practices.

However, many issues accompanying the integration of new learning formats into Higher Education have not yet been addressed satisfactorily. Major issues are:

  • how to validate and recognise the skills acquired by learners
  • how to reconcile and combine new learning formats with established functioning mechanisms and strategies
  • how to account for the relevance of research

There is a need to better understand how universities can open up their institutions effectively to further enhance the quality and relevance of their educational offer. There is also a need to better understand what kind of accompanying policy mechanisms could help universities in this process of innovation and modernisation.

The OpenEdu project is a study on Strategies for Opening up Education to support the Communication on "Opening up Education: Innovative teaching and learning for all through new Technologies and Open Educational Resources".

The study will take two years and its main objectives are to:

  • explore existing mechanisms for the recognition of learning through open education initiatives (see OpenCred)
  • propose a framework for opening up practices at postsecondary education institutions covering a variety of dimensions: content, technology, pedagogy, leadership, accreditation, business models, etc.
  • seek understanding of the supply and demand of MOOCs offered in European universities and the implications for open education in Europe (see MOOCKnowledge).

In order to achieve these results, OpenEdu will make use of a variety of research methods (surveys, case studies, observations, focus groups) and also propose strategies to gather feedback, ensure quality and validate the results.


Project Leader
Yves Punie

Project team
Jonatan Castaño Muñoz
Andreia Inamorato dos Santos