Open Praxis is a peer-reviewed open access scholarly journal focusing on research and innovation in open, distance and flexible education. It is published by the International Council for Open and Distance Education - ICDE. The aim of Open Praxis is to provide a forum for global collaboration and discussion of issues in the practice of distance and e-learning. Open Praxis welcomes contributions which demonstrate creative and innovative research, and which highlight challenges, lessons and achievements in the practice of distance and e-learning from all over the world. An article may present research or surveys of recent work, describe original work, or discuss new technology and its possibilities, implications and/or other related issues.


The Globethics library contains articles of the Open Praxis as of vol. 1(2007) to current.

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  • Intergovernmental Organisations (IGOs) and Governmental Open Educational Resources (OER) Policies: Instruments of International Policy Influence

    Igor Lesko; Paquita Perez Salgado; Herman van den Bosch (International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE), 2023-11-01)
    Intergovernmental Organisations (IGOs) have been playing a prominent role in the Open Educational Resources (OER) movement in advocating for and supporting the development of governmental OER policies. Research shows that IGOs perform multiple roles in influencing national and global education policy processes and possess multiple policy instruments with which they can assert their influence. We adopted the conceptual framework of policy instruments to understand the types of policy instruments applied by the selected IGOs. We carried out semi-structured interviews with representatives from four important IGOs. Results show that the selected IGOs collectively used discursive dissemination, funding, technical assistance, standard-setting and coordinative functions OER policy instruments to influence the development of governmental OER policies. We report on the perceived and observed successes of these IGOs OER policy instruments and the related challenges. We discuss relevant findings and their implications for further research and activities of IGOs.
  • University Lecturers’ Feelings, Awareness and Attitudes Towards Open Education Resources: Experience from Two Higher Learning Institutions in Tanzania

    Christian Mubofu; Elias Kainkwa (International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE), 2023-11-01)
    This study explored university lecturers ‘feelings, awareness, and attitudes toward Open Education Resources (OERs). The study focused on two higher learning institutions based in Tanzania. It was conducted through a quantitative approach. Data were collected using a questionnaire from 52 lecturers who were purposively selected. The collected data were subjected to Statistical Product and Service Solutions version 20 computer program for calculation of descriptive Statistics. A descriptive analysis was used to analyze the obtained data, which were then presented in frequencies and percentages in tables. Findings indicate that the sampled lecturers from the higher learning institutions are moderately aware of the OERs. Regarding the feelings of lecturers over the use of OER, the collected data have revealed that a majority of the lecturers believed in OERs, are happy for those who adopt their OERs, and that they feel that OERs enhance the reputation of their institutions. In terms of lecturers’ attitudes toward OERs, a majority of the lecturers strongly agreed that OERs are more beneficial to the academic and research communities. The study concludes that a majority of the study participants are moderately aware of the OERs and believe in them and that they are pleased when people adopt their OERs. The study suggests that there should be training and supporting lecturers who have unfavorable sentiments towards OERs so that they can change and use the program for their academic and research activities and advancement.
  • A Conceptual Approach to Transform and Enhance Academic Mentorship: Through Open Educational Practices

    Javiera Atenas; Chrissi Nerantzi; Anna Bussu (International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE), 2023-11-01)
    This paper offers guidance for policymakers and institutions keen on embracing Open Educational Practices within their mentorship strategies, advocating for co-creation and collaboration as foundational principles, to promote a wide range of open practices to foster transparency, inclusivity, creativeness, innovation and collaboration in academic mentorship. This conceptual paper explores the transformative potential of Open Educational Practices in the context of academic mentorship, which is per-se an open practice. We have adopted an integrative approach for our literature review, which is a non-systematic model, to help us to mitigate algorithmic biases presented in scholarly databases, for analysing and discussing literature, alongside the review of case studies to explore the intersection of open practices and mentorship in academia. We aim to highlight the profound impact mentorship has on professional development, knowledge dissemination, and collaborative learning. Drawing on a diverse selection of literature and case studies reflecting mentorship programmes both formally and informally in academic contexts, this paper provides concrete examples from practice of how Open Educational Practices can be seamlessly integrated into formal and informal academic mentorship as a driver to enhance knowledge sharing, foster inclusivity, and bolster the quality of mentorship relationships.
  • Unleashing the potential of generative AI, conversational agents and chatbots in educational praxis: A systematic review and bibliometric analysis of GenAI in education

    Aras Bozkurt (International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE), 2023-11-01)
    In the rapidly evolving landscape of education, the pivotal axis around which transformation revolves is human-AI interaction. In this sense, this paper adopts a data mining and analytic approach to understand what the related literature tells us regarding the trends and patterns of generative AI research in educational praxis. Accordingly, this systematic exploration spotlights the following research themes: Interaction and communication with generative AI-powered chatbots; impact of the LLMs and generative AI on teaching and learning, conversational educational agents and their opportunities, challenges, and implications; leveraging Generative AI for enhancing social and cognitive learning processes; promoting AI literacy for unleashing future opportunities; harnessing Generative AI to expand academic capabilities, and lastly, augmenting educational experiences through human-AI interaction. Beyond the identified research themes and patterns, this paper argues that emotional intelligence, AI literacy, and prompt engineering are the trending research topics that require further exploration. Accordingly, it's in this praxis that emotional intelligence emerges as a pivotal attribute, as AI systems' ability to discern and respond to nuanced emotional cues plays a substantial role in the efficacy of educational interactions. Generative AI literacy then takes center stage, becoming an indispensable asset in an era permeated with AI technologies, equipping students with the tools to critically engage with AI systems, thereby ensuring they become active, discerning users of these powerful tools. Concurrently, prompt engineering, the art of crafting queries that yield precise and valuable responses from AI systems, empowers both educators and students to maximize the utility of AI-driven educational resources.
  • Foregrounding Care in Online Student Engagement in a South African E-learning University

    Thembeka Shange (International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE), 2023-11-01)
    This study reports how ethics of care principles were foregrounded in a first-year English module offered at an open distance e-learning (ODeL) university in South Africa to enhance online student engagement. Current research indicates that online student engagement predicts student success; however, there is a paucity of how ethics of care principles can be foregrounded in online student interaction to enhance student participation. The researcher used an action research approach to explore the students’ and lecturers’ interactions in this module. Their interactions on the discussion forum over four semesters were carefully analysed to establish whether ethics of care principles were displayed. Interviews were also conducted with the lecturers concerned to determine their views on care ethics. Data was also collected through pre- and post-student evaluations of the module, and evaluations of the virtual class conducted during the semester. The key findings indicated that the students understood care as collaboration and respect in online interactions. Despite the lecturers displaying little or no awareness of the principles, their comments resonated with some care principles. Future research should focus on how the ethics of care principles can be integrated into online interaction while teaching an online English module.
  • The Impact of Open Educational Resource Professional Development for Teachers in Secondary Education

    Kelly Arispe; Amber Hoye; Katie Palmer (International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE), 2023-11-01)
    Scholars suggest that when teachers retain, reuse, revise, remix, and redistribute Open Educational Resources (OER), the process of OER-enabled Pedagogy (OEP), they not only gain high-quality, digital teaching materials, but they also transform their teaching (Wiley, et al., 2017). Nonetheless, OEP is not an automatic outcome of using OER, rather it is dependent upon practicing key competencies through strategic professional development (PD). This paper reports a mixed-methods case study that contemplates the impacts of PD on OEP with five secondary education teachers, an under-investigated population. The findings reveal that small-scale PD can be successful in growing knowledge about OER, but that OEP is only catalyzed when teachers are required to reuse the OER in their classroom. Furthermore, small-scale PD cannot combat barriers like digital and information literacy that impede engagement in OEP efficiently and this may ultimately prohibit its sustainability in secondary contexts.
  • Crisis-Based Remote Education: A Comprehensive Model

    William H. Stewart; Patrick R. Lowenthal (International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE), 2023-11-01)
    The COVID-19 pandemic revealed significant gaps in institutions’ ability to maintain education under crisis conditions, which is now commonly referred to as Emergency Remote Teaching (ERT). A critical analysis of the literature reveals that ERT is a label that does not differentiate adequately between the different ways ERT manifested worldwide and over time. In this conceptual paper, we analyze empirical research on remote teaching conducted over single, double, and three+ learning terms. Our analysis shows not only multiple possible phases of remote education but also different stages, scopes, and pathways between them. The proposed model in this paper can be used to analyze current literature, ground future research, and serve as a foundation for developing protocols and practices to proactively maintain education when exigent circumstances demand remote teaching over the short-, mid-, and long-term.
  • Book Review: Teaching in the Online Classroom: Surviving and Thriving in the New Normal

    S. Haslinda Mukhtar; M. Khalid M. Nasir (International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE), 2023-11-01)
    Lemov, D. (eds.) (2020). Teaching in The Online Classroom: Surviving and Thriving in The New Normal. San Francisco: Jossy-Bass. ISBN 9781-119-762-935.
  • Critiquing Sustainable Openness in Technology-Based Education from the Perspective of Cost-Effectiveness and Accessibility

    Junhong Xiao (International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE), 2023-09-01)
    The over-exaggeration of technology’s role in education has dominated the landscape of research, often resulting in the negligence of other important issues. This article critiques openness in technology-based education from the perspective of sustainability, put more specifically, cost-effectiveness and accessibility, both of which have direct impact on sustainable openness. It first reviews the purpose of using technology in education advocated in strategy documents, namely using technology to break the iron triangle of access, cost, and quality, hence increasing openness in high-quality education. It contends that technology-based education cannot be sustainably open without both cost-effectiveness and accessibility. Nevertheless, sustainable openness is an under-researched theme according to the findings from a review of 3,059 primary studies conducted in this article. The article then goes on to rethink sustainable openness in the digital age, arguing that technology-based education should be cost-effective to educational institutions and students alike and cater for socio-economic diversity and disparity, among other things, to ensure sustainable openness to all. It concludes by calling for a critical approach to researching technology-based education with the aim of achieving high quality, cost-effectiveness, and accessibility at the same time and opening up education to all.
  • The Relationship between Satisfaction, Interaction, E-learning Readiness, and Academic Achievement in Online Learning

    Ayşe Bağrıacık Yılmaz (International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE), 2023-09-01)
    In this study, the relationship between students’ e-learning readiness, perceptions of interaction in online learning environments, satisfaction, and academic achievement was examined. The research was conducted according to correlational study principles. The academic achievement variable of the study was determined based on the final exam grades of the students, and three separate scales were used for other variables. The data of the study were obtained from 212 students who received fully online education. The data obtained were analyzed by structural equation modelling method. According to the results of the study, e-learning readiness and interaction perception are predictors of satisfaction in online learning environments. The effect of interaction on satisfaction was found to be higher. There is a moderate relationship between student-content and student-instructor interaction dimensions of interaction and satisfaction. There is a low level relationship between many dimensions of e-learning readiness and satisfaction. However, e-learning readiness, interaction, and satisfaction are not predictors of academic achievement. Moreover, no significant relationship was found between e-learning readiness and interaction. Based on the findings of the study, various comments and suggestions were made regarding better online learning environments.
  • Book Review: Handbook of Open, Distance, and Digital Education

    Berrin Cefa (International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE), 2023-09-01)
    Zawacki-Richter, O., & Jung, I. (Eds.). (2023). Handbook of Open, Distance and Digital Education. Springer Nature Singapore.
  • Reviewing a 5-Year Grant-Funded Campus OER Initiative: Reflections, Successes, & Challenges

    Christina Boyle (International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE), 2023-09-01)
    Open Educational Resources (OER) have continued to gain traction in higher education, assisting with ever-rising costs of publisher textbooks and supporting pedagogical innovation. Starting in 2017, NY state legislature has allocated funds annually to be split between its two public university systems to support and incentivize the adoption of OER. The author’s institution, an included public college, has secured portions of this funding each year. This paper will focus on the initial five years of the state-funded OER initiative at the City University of New York (CUNY) College of Staten Island, with reflections on the successes of the program, the overall process of the annual grant cycle on campus, challenges that arose in the burgeoning OER program, and suggestions for future considerations. The main aim of this paper is to highlight the impact of state funding on the establishment of a library-facilitated OER initiative, to serve as a example for other institutions who are seeking to build an OER program.
  • Designing OER with Equity: An Example of Situating Equity in a Community College Statistics Course Redesign

    Shadisadat Ghaderi (International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE), 2023-09-01)
    This article showcases an example of a large-scale open educational resource (OER) statistics course redesign at Guttman Community College from evaluation, creation, and development. It highlights ways I identified students’ needs and responded to them, integrated equity into the OER design by describing how social justice principles were applied, as well as explicit examples of integration of culturally and locally relevant content in the design. This practical illustration of a course redesign is significant due to the lack of literature available on creating culturally and locally relevant and responsive OER. It is the hope that this example will encourage and inform the development of other such relevant and responsive OER projects to promote equity within open education.
  • Epistemic Considerations of Open Education to Re-Source Educators’ Praxis Sustainably

    Barbara Class (International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE), 2023-09-01)
    This article suggests to reflect on the philosophical foundations of Open Education. It reaches out to Bergson’s and Popper’s respective understandings of Open Society; ontology of immanence, not-yetness; and post-inquiry. It invites to revisit ethos, eidos and praxis in Open Education to move away from a prevailing Western, dominant, unsustainable paradigm and explore a holistic approach, the inclusion of indigenous knowledge systems, the shift from an overall domesticating to a liberating education, and the making visible of what has been made invisible. This discussion precedes the presentation of a roadmap drafted for Open Education in the Swiss Higher Education landscape, explaining why it has been deliberately prepared at the epistemic level and how relevant this is in relation to the sustainability process, providing a horizon for the first of three steps - survival, security, sustainability.
  • Why All the Hype about ChatGPT? Academics’ Views of a Chat-based Conversational Learning Strategy at an Open Distance e-Learning Institution

    Micheal M. van Wyk; Michael Agyemang Adarkwah; Samuel Amponsah (International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE), 2023-09-01)
    The launch of ChatGPT has been revolutionary. This AI chatbot can produce conversations which are indistinguishable from that of humans. This exploratory qualitative study is foregrounded in a constructivist-interpretative perspective. The principal objective of this paper is to explore the views of academics on ChatGPT as an AI-based learning strategy at an open distance e-learning (ODeL) institution of higher education. Thirteen academics, who were enrolled as study participants, posted their views of ChatGPT as an AI-based learning strategy on a Teams chat at an institution of higher learning. The results support a few research studies on ChatGPT. The academics recognized the benefits and risks of using ChatGPT for teaching and learning. Further investigations are recommended to explore similar studies in higher education spaces and specifications.
  • Generative AI, Synthetic Contents, Open Educational Resources (OER), and Open Educational Practices (OEP): A New Front in the Openness Landscape

    Aras Bozkurt (International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE), 2023-09-01)
    This paper critically examines the transformation of the educational landscape through the integration of generative AI with Open Educational Resources (OER) and Open Educational Practices (OEP). The emergence of AI in content creation has ignited debate regarding its potential to comprehend and generate human language, creating content that is often indistinguishable from that produced by humans. This shift from organic (human-created) to synthetic (AI-created) content presents a new frontier in the educational sphere, particularly in the context of OER and OEP. The paper explores the generative AI’s capabilities in OER and OEP, such as automatic content generation, resource curation, updating existing resources, co-creation and facilitating collaborative learning. Nevertheless, it underscores the importance of addressing challenges like the quality and reliability of AI-generated content, data privacy, and equitable access to AI technologies. The critical discussion extends to a contentious issue, ownership in OER/OEP. While AI-generated works lack human authorship and copyright protection, the question of legal liability and recognition of authorship remains a significant concern. In response, the concept of prompt engineering and co-creation with AI is presented as a potential solution, viewing AI not as authors, but powerful tools augmenting authors’ abilities. By examining generative AI’s integration with OER and OEP, this paper encourages further research and discussion to harness AI’s power while addressing potential concerns, thereby contributing to the dialogue on responsible and effective use of generative AI in education.
  • Introduction to Open Praxis volume 14 issue 2

    Inés Gil-Jaurena (International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE), 2022-12-01)
    This Open Praxis issue includes five research papers, one innovative practice paper and one book review.
  • Opening Futures for Nigerian Education – Integrating Educational Technologies with Indigenous Knowledge and Practices

    Biliamin Adekunle Adeyeye; Jon Mason (International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE), 2019-03-01)
    This paper highlights some key historical perspectives and antecedents of African Indigenous knowledge (AIK) and practices while identifying ‘open’ futures and opportunities for the application of digital technologies for educational opportunities that build on this cultural base. The role and negative impact of colonialism in the under-development of AIK is examined in this context together with the impact of post-colonial and contemporary corruption in further undermining the value of Indigenous knowledge systems. Two key concepts are identified as a counterpoint to this: the resilience of AIK and ‘local wisdom’ and the openness underpinning much of the ongoing digital revolution. This natural alignment can help guide the integration of Indigenous-based knowledge and practices and the deployment of open and distance learning in the re-birth of African Indigenous Knowledge Systems (AIKS). Openness is a pivotal concept here for it is integral to both the architecture of the Web and in its ongoing evolution. Given the identified opportunities associated with digital technology, and despite the challenges, it is argued that there is an unequivocal need for AIKS to explore the advantages of open education resources and practices in promoting this rebirth that is also consistent with modern science and technologies in Africa and beyond.
  • Correlation between familial roles and persistence of female students on distance education programmes in Ghana: Through the lens of an administrator

    Beatrice Asante Somuah; Samson Ikinya Kariuki; Florence Muthoni ITEGI (International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE), 2019-11-01)
    The contributions of individuals towards a nation’s development cannot be underestimated. Nevertheless, research has proven that gender roles could create some setbacks to the extent that some individuals may not be able to reach the optimum in higher education. This correlational study explored whether the interplay of some female gender roles affected persistence as female students juggled with studies. A total of 21 study centres with female enrolment of a 100 and above were purposively selected. Using simple random sampling, a sample of 441 female students were drawn from two distance education institutions in Ghana. The study employed the correlational research design. A questionnaire was used to collect data and analysed using descriptive statistics and Pearson Product Moment Correlation Coefficient. It was revealed that female students had family roles they performed. The study found that there was a positive correlation between persistence and familial roles among the participants. This implied that as the level of familial roles of the respondents increased, their persistence increased as well, thus revealing some level of resilience towards the progression of their education. It was therefore recommended that administrators of distance education institutions equipped female students with the needed knowledge and support to ensure the effective management of their familial roles.
  • An Evaluation of Online Proctoring Tools

    Mohammed Juned Hussein; Javed Yusuf; Arpana Sandhya Deb; Letila Fong; Som Naidu (International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE), 2020-12-01)
    COVID’19 is hastening the adoption of online learning and teaching worldwide, and across all levels of education. While many of the typical learning and teaching transactions such as lecturing and communicating are easily handled by contemporary online learning technologies, others, such as assessment of learning outcomes with closed book examinations are fraught with challenges. Among other issues to do with students and teachers, these challenges have to do with the ability of teachers and educational organizations to ensure academic integrity in the absence of a live proctor when an examination is being taken remotely and from a private location. A number of online proctoring tools are appearing on the market that portend to offer solutions to some of the major challenges. But for the moment, they too remain untried and tested on any large scale. This includes the cost of the service and their technical requirements. This paper reports on one of the first attempts to properly evaluate a selection of these tools and offer recommendations for educational institutions. This investigation, which was carried out at the University of the South Pacific, comprised a four-phased approach, starting with desk research that was followed with pilot testing by a group of experts as well as students. The elimination of a tool in every phase was based on the ‘survival of the fittest’ approach with each phase building upon the milestones and deliverables from the previous phase. This paper presents the results of this investigation and discusses its key findings.

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