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Mobilizing Open Educational Resources (OER) in the UAE & GCC States


Open Educational Resources (OER) are growing rapidly across the globe. Open and freely accessible content, available to anyone anywhere and through digital media, has the capacity to re-shape the educational landscape in the UAE and GCC States. OER are not a panacea for resolving all the issues in education relevant to access, the cost of content, and the teaching, acquisition and application of knowledge through educational media. Rather they are resources that broaden the content continuum for educators to use for designing innovative and engaging teaching approaches that produce improved and rewarding learning experiences for students. Educational institutions in the UAE and GCC states may need to assess their local knowledge base about OER; how OER capacity aligns with the institution’s mission and teaching and learning infrastructure; the cultural, social, and linguistic issues relevant to OER; and what organizations may be potential partners for OER collaboration. The importance of creating OER in Arabic will be a critical learning resource for institutions in the UAE and GCC States regardless whether an institution’s instructional language is Arabic and/or English. Colleges and universities new to the OER movement may find it useful to establish a task force or working group to examine the potential of OER for the institution. OER are a brave new world of educational content for colleges and universities in the UAE and GCC member states.