To define open pedagogy, we need to break it down to its two components, open and pedagogy:

Open, in this instance, refers to open educational resources (OER) – defined by UNESCO as “any type of educational materials that are in the public domain or introduced with an open license.”

Pedagogy is the practice and method of teaching; how we teach, rather than what we teach.

Open pedagogy, also known as open educational practices (OEP), is the use of open educational resources (OER) to support learning, or the open sharing of teaching practices with a goal of improving education and training at the institutional, professional, and individual level.

When you use open pedagogy in your classroom, you are inviting your students to be part of the teaching process, participating in the co-creation of knowledge.

Open pedagogy in the classroom

There are many ways of building open pedagogy into your learning environment. You can engage your students to create a set of exercises for a specific chapter in an open textbook, or incorporate student assignments into a collection of OER which could be submitted as part of a future open textbook or used in conjunction with an existing resource. Instead of using disposable assignments that offer no value to the student or the instructors, your students, under your direction and supervision, can build a resource designed to improve the learning space for future students.

Building open pedagogy into open textbooks

In 2013, we held a sprint with faculty from around the province to develop a geography textbook filled with excellent content and learning activities for students. The completed open textbook takes a holistic approach to geography and offers suggested learning activities within each chapter.

Content vs. pedagogy

At BCcampus we believe that content and pedagogy are not mutually exclusive. Creative and informed content enables forward momentum, and the information needs to be developed and delivered by subject-matter experts with knowledge of teaching and learning, or advised by those who are. The combined value of content and pedagogy helps us make the best use of openly licensed materials to create affordable, accessible, and effective learning environments, in B.C. and around the world.