LangOER (2014 – 2016) was an European network focused on enhancing the linguistic and cultural components of OER (open educational resources) by offering OER in less used languages and by enhancing sustainability through OER reuse.
LangOER aimed to contribute to the promotion of learning and teaching of less used European languages by linking them to the global challenges of Open Education. This was supported by awareness raising and capacity building activities (including exchange of good practice, training, expert consultations, discussions and dissemination activities) for the two main target groups, policy makers and educators in less used languages in Europe.
The final conference of the LangOER’s project ‘Open Education: Promoting Diversity for European Languages’, co-organised with the Educational Repositories Network (EdReNe) in September 2016, initiated the final phase of the activities, bringing together experts in open education and digital content repositories with educational researchers and a variety of policy makers concerned with language learning and teaching, pedagogical use of ICT, and social integration and inclusion.
Main focus of the event was to discuss the project’s final policy recommendations and to present other findings regarding OER, which are still a relatively open challenge in Less Used Languages communities. The conference concluded with a call for future actions on OER and for involving researchers, experts and policy makers in further improvement of the recommendations.
Following the event, these key stakeholders were invited to keep contributing to the debate around the recommendations, by participating in the webinar Open Education: Promoting Diversity for European Languages – Consultation on policy recommendations and by joining the Facebook group LangOER – Policy consultation, which will be maintained as an open space for dialogue and engagement.
The final policy recommendations ‘Enhancing Cultural and Linguistic Diversity in Europe through OER’ were released in November 2016.
“OERs and Open Educational Practices (OEP) are relevant for all sectors and levels of education in LUL, and especially in the case of endangered languages and regional and minority languages. For those languages, OER/OEP are particularly relevant, simply because these communities of speakers are relatively small in number, they typically lack financial resources and they often encounter a dearth of learning materials. […]
However, even as the number of policy proposals to support OER uptake have grown and the benefits are more widely recognised, thus far there have been only sporadic efforts to explicitly address the opportunities and challenges of OER policies aimed at European LUL communities.1”
Considering this framework, the paper provides an overview of three top level policy recommendations, complemented by key actionable steps for different stakeholders involved:
• Developing a well-functioning OER lifecycle – “create-access-use-adapt”
• Providing professional development and support for teachers
• Supporting community and network building for quality learning outcomes
More information about the policy consultation process that led to these final document may be found here.
For more resources created during the project life span, for policy makers, experts and educators, you can also consult this Digital Showcase.