Towards a Global Infrastructure For Sharing Learning Resources
This document aims to help those who ask, "What should I be doing when I publish my OER's so that they are searchable and discoverable by the OER community and (perhaps) the whole world?". More specifically, this document aims to help those with a collection of such OER's.
There are several options for many of the fundamental questions. Luckily, the number of options is actually quite limited. For nearly all producers we recommend adopting one of the choices outlined below. These have significant adoption and deployment, increasing the reach and exposure of your OER. We will develop bridges between the different approaches; indeed, many of these bridges already exist.
In essence, the choices boil down to:
- If you are looking for a repository to store the OER's and make them available to the world, then you can contact ARIADNE or Connexions who will gladly do so on your behalf or provide you with the code to run your own repository.
- If you have your own repository, then we strongly suggest that you make your content and metadata available for harvesting. As an alternative or in addition, you can also make your repository available for federated search. We strongly suggest that you register your repository
- For your content, we make no specific assumptions: HTML documents, OpenOffice documents, Microsoft Office documents, MPEG video clips, PDF documents, MP3 sound files, etc.; anything goes. Of course, in the spirit of open educational resources, we certainly encourage you to publish in as open a format as feasible.
- For the metadata, we strongly suggest to use either Learning Object Metadata or Dublin Core. For specific niche domains, other formats like for instance MPEG apply as well. You may also define a so-called 'application profile' that defines your specific requirements your repository imposes with respect to metadata, so that you can enforce them. In concrete terms, such metadata can be expressed as XML or RDF.