Wednesday, October 19, 2016

EDDE 806 - Post VI.II - Attack of the Greeks!

Now that I am back from vacation (was off to Spain, but spent a little time in Istanbul on the way to and from), it's time to catch up a bit on EDDE 806. On the day that I was flying out to begin my vacation Alec Couros was presenting....D'oh!  I missed the opportunity to be live in that 806.  Not only was Alec on, but there was also a fellow EDDE student who is also Greek.  It would have been glorious to have so many Greeks on on 806 session. Oh well - maybe next time :p

In any case, Alec's presentation was titled "The Making of an Open & Connected Educator" which was really interesting.  Parts of what he presented on were familiar to me because I've been following Alec since 2011 when I got into MOOCs, and I learned more about ED&C 831 (his open course). Parts of what he presented were new to me.  For instance I didn't know he was a school teacher before he got into his current career.  Props to anyone who is a school teacher - I don't think I'd have the patience for that line of work :-).   I find it interesting that he was criticized as a "techo communist" (maybe I should pull out my vintage soviet beret and join the band?) because he wanted to be out in the open.  I also find it interesting that his dissertation was the first dissertation to be available in an open access means.

This presentation reminded me of (and kicked into mental gear) a few of things:

1.  I was around for the kick-off of Linux (mentioned in the presentation), and I do remember a time before that.  However I also acknowledge that I feel like I am living in "internet time" where things seem much more compact.  Like Peggy Lynn wrote (in the chat) - we've already drank the kool aid when it comes to being an open educator, but it's also important to realize that just because we've subscribed to it, and we (well, I do anyway) feel like this open thing has been around for ages, it's actually still in an infantile form and still needs people to support it.

2. I've been thinking about taking the open access pledge (for lack of a better term) for my work but not being sure where I might end up after the EdD program I don't know how feasible it is at the moment. Whenever possible, and when I collaborate with others (my preferred form of working on projects) I often advocate for OA, but that's not always possible (most time it is).  I am wondering if (for younger scholars, and those before tenure) if publishing in a closed journal or book is fine, provided that you get a pre-print version into your institution's (or your own) repository.

3. Alec in this presentation, and friends and fellow collaborators through twitter, reminded me of how much is on my "to read" list that I've added onto it but forgotten about it (talk about digital hoarding, eh Alec!).  This makes me wonder two things:  (a)  Does my mind feel like a leaky colander because I am working on many projects at once, including my dissertation proposal? Or am I just getting old? Or am I just human and this is normal?;  and (b)  there are people in my network (some of whom Alex mentioned) that have written about topics that would fit into my dissertation research and I just need to be kindly reminded about them.

4. Relating to open access, and the open access pledge - this is a though that I have been pondering since I started 805.  In my research I want to privilege OA sources. This to me means getting as many of my literature review items from open access journals.  However, I worry that my committee might say "well AK, you've missed some really important stuff by not looking at ALL journals" (a valid point, it could be #yoda).  If I am to make my dissertation available via OA, can I reasonably (as a researcher) aim to only (or mostly) use OA journals for my literature review and have that be part of my perspective as a researcher? Or am I shooting myself in the foot?

I enjoyed the presentation by Alec.  Maybe we can have him on as a guest again so I won't miss the presentation :-)
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