Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Soft launch of the Cape Town Declaration

The Cape Town Open Education Declaration will officially launch in mid-January.  But it made a soft launch today in order to gather pre-launch signatures.  If you or your institution is committed to open education, please consider signing the declaration before it launches.

The Cape Town Declaration aims to unify and accelerate the open education movement, roughly as the Budapest Open Access initiative did for open access.  The text and FAQ are provisional until January.  Read them closely and send the drafters your feedback.  Meantime, here's an excerpt from the text:

We are on the cusp of a global revolution in teaching and learning. Educators worldwide are developing a vast pool of educational resources on the Internet, open and free for all to use. These educators are creating a world where each and every person on earth can access and contribute to the sum of all human knowledge. They are also planting the seeds of a new pedagogy where educators and learners create, shape and evolve knowledge together, deepening their skills and understanding as they go.

This emerging open education movement combines the established tradition of sharing good ideas with fellow educators and the collaborative, interactive culture of the Internet. It is built on the belief that everyone should have the freedom to use, customize, improve and redistribute educational resources without constraint. Educators, learners and others who share this belief are gathering together as part of a worldwide effort to make education both more accessible and more effective....

The expanding global collection of open educational resources has created fertile ground for this effort. These resources include openly licensed course materials, lesson plans, textbooks, games, software and other materials that support teaching and learning....

However, open education is not limited to just open educational resources. It also draws upon open technologies that facilitate collaborative, flexible learning and the open sharing of teaching practices that empower educators to benefit from the best ideas of their colleagues....

PS:  For earlier previews of the declaration, see my past blog posts on it.