Factors shaping lecturers' adoption of OER at three South African universities

2017-12-06T00:00:00Z (GMT) by Cox, Glenda Trotter, Henry
<p>The research presented here focuses on understanding the obstacles, opportunities and practices associated with Open Educational Resources (OER) adoption at three South African universities. It addresses the question: Why do South African lecturers adopt – or not adopt – OER? In trying to answer this, the authors also attempt to identify which factors shape lecturers’ OER adoption decisions, and how lecturers’ institutional cultures influence their OER use and creation choices.</p> <p>This study employed a qualitative research approach through in-depth personal interviews with 18 respondents at three different universities which together broadly represent the characteristics of South Africa’s university sector. Unique analytical tools – the OER adoption pyramid and OER adoption readiness tables – were developed to help with analysing and synthesising the data.</p> <p>Findings indicate that whether and how OER adoption takes place at an institution is shaped by a layered sequence of factors – infrastructural access, legal permission, conceptual awareness, technical capacity, material availability, and individual or institutional volition – which are further influenced by prevailing cultural and social variables.</p> <p>This study has value and application for researchers and institutions pursuing an OER agenda, policy-makers seeking tools to assess OER readiness in institutional contexts, and funding agencies aiming to boost institutional OER engagement.</p> <p>The dataset arising from this study can be accessed at:<br> https://www.datafirst.uct.ac.za/dataportal/index.php/catalog/555</p>