This study was commissioned by the Commonwealth of Learning as an input to the World OER Congress organized by UNESCO in June 2012.  The authors, Neil Butcher and Sarah Hoose situate the contribution of OER in the wider context of the challenges facing education at all levels in an era of economic stringency.  They relate OER to the realities of the teaching-learning process, arguing that greater reliance on resource-based learning, rather than large-group teaching, will be essential if wider access to education of quality is to be achieved. Creating high-quality learning resources ab initio is expensive, but the authors present compelling evidence that using OER can reduce this cost substantially. They also present some startling analyses of the economics of textbook production, which again show that systematic processes of investing in OER can create huge savings for governments and students. The commercial publishing industry can play a part in this process.

Neil Butcher
Sarah Hoosen
Research Reports
OER research in Africa