Storify Extraction

Version 1.1: K-12 Open Educational Practice Proposal

Open Educational Practice Lit Review Version 1.0

“research” by Paul Loubet is licensed under CC BY 2.0

As part of my Collaboratory experience, in preparation for my Candidacy exam next year, as an EdD Learning Sciences at UofC I am starting to work on my Literature Review for my EdD proposal.

Over two summers, I have had the opportunity to “go deep” into educational practice and theory in our summer cohorts. Part of the expectation of these summer cohorts is to write four academic papers that we will use towards our EdD proposal. These papers have scaffolded my literature review experiences and ensured that I have at least started to read much of the current research in K-12 Open Educational Practice.

However, my topic is still emerging in K-12 and in Higher Education and my literature review is essential in helping me create a conceptual framework for the K-12  Open Educational Practice model (which is constantly being updated) and indicators of K-12 Open Educational Practice.

Here is what I have so far, knowing it is a work in progress:
Google Link:

Please skim it over, think about things to add, critique and anything else!

Looking forward to the work ahead,

Verena 🙂

Version 1.1: K-12 Open Educational Practice Proposal


“The Zone” by Tinou Bao is licensed under CC BY 2.0

I received some amazing feedback on my original proposal from my PLN, on my Starting out (again) as an Open Researcher Storify. My supervisor. Michele Jacobsen, helped me considerably by encouraging me to propose a presentation for the CSSE/SCEE Canadian Society for the Study of Education. The combination of a proposal for the conference and feedback from esteemed colleagues and researchers around the world, helped me get to Version 1.1

I have also fixed my comments plug in, so I am looking forward to your feedback connected to the blog post page.

Version 1.1 Proposal to Examine Open Educational Practice (OEP) in K-12 Learning Environments

Research Problem:

Students live in a technologically enhanced and fully networked world full of ubiquitous learning opportunities; when students go to school they are in another world, a walled garden that shields them from openly networked learning opportunities. In a 2014 MediaSmarts survey, 99% of Canadian students ages grades 4-11 indicated that they have access to the Internet outside of school (Steeves, 2014). In a recent Canadian Teacher’s Federation survey, 97% of teachers indicated their school provided them with some kind of networked device at the school, 59% reported students were allowed to use their devices in class and one in ten teachers (13%) indicated they used social networking for educational purposes (Johnson, Riel & Froesse-Germain, 2016). “In that displacement, the borders between home and world become confused; and, uncannily, the private and the public become part of each other, forcing upon us a vision that is as divided as it is disorienting” (Bhabha, 1994, p.9).  As K-12 pedagogical practices shift from instructivist to constructivist designs, there is growing evidence of open educational practices that encourage access to learning for all, practices that support collaboration with other learners in formal and informal learning environments, and pedagogical designs that invite individual learners’ voices and choices in open learning spaces. However, while innovative pedagogical practices are emerging and there is growing support for research that examines K-12 open educational practice, this area is currently underexplored.

Research Purpose:

Many K-12 learners are learning in multimodal, complex and networked digital learning environments. Open Educational Practice (OEP) is an emerging K-12 pedagogy that has the potential to bridge formal and informal digital learning environments that can connect multimodal, complex and networked learning opportunities. The indicators of K-12 OEP include open educational resources, open learning design, participatory culture, networked learning, digital learning spaces and open readiness. (Roberts, Blomgren, Peters & Graham, in press).

Figure 1: K-12 Open Educational Practice (Roberts, Blomgren 2017)

Indicators of K-12 Open Educational Practice CC Licensed CC-BY


The purpose of this research is to determine the OEP tipping point for educators in K-12 learning environments. What motivates educators to consider OEP and expand the possibilities of with whom,what, where, why and how K-12 learners can learn in 2017. Is it because they believe that the current walled garden learning spaces do not offer learners the skills, knowledge and abilities that they will need for the future? Is OEP a pedagogical approach to meet the needs of our current learners for a world we do not yet know?

The research will consider if OEP extends the opportunity for students to cross perceived and real boundaries to “new, safe and other” digital open learning spaces which can offer previously inconceivable learning opportunities. These scaffolded and safe learning spaces have been previously been researched using Third Space theory and Vygotsky’s zone of proximal development  (both examples of sociocultural theory).


The OEP indicators, as depicted in Figure 1 (Version 1.1), serve as framework for an examination of the potential to develop OEP awareness in K-12 learning environments, describe OEP in current K-12 learning contexts, and help frame our questions about why educators choose OEP and connect sociocultural constructivist theory to K-12 open educational practice.

Research Questions: (Your feedback here is very helpful as I cull, filter and focus…)

What is the current landscape of OEP in K-12 learning contexts?

Why do educators choose OEP? What are their perceptions of the strengths and weaknesses of OEP?

What is the potential for developing OEP awareness in K-12 learning environments?

Does OEP create the potential for expansion of learning into ZPD and Third Spaces?

Do educators perceive OEP provides learning opportunities that walled learning gardens do not?

Please add your feedback, questions and concerns in the comment space below – tweet me @verenanz

Thank you!

Happy Thanksgiving to all those who celebrate it this weekend and thank you for being you to everyone else.


Bhabha, H. (1994). The location of culture. London: Routledge.

Johnson, M., Riel, R & Froese-Germain, B. (2016). Connected to learn: Teachers’ Experiences with Networked Technologies in the Classroom. Ottawa: mediaSmarts/Canadian Teacher’s Federation.

Roberts, V. (2017). Defining K-12 Open Educational Practice Research Topic, Problem and Questions. [Blog post]. Retrieved from

Roberts, V., Blomgren, C., Peterson, K. & L. Graham. (in press). Open Educational Practice in K-12 Online and Blended Learning Environments.  In R. Ferdig & K. Kennedy’s Handbook of Research on K-12 Online and Blended Learning 2nd edition. Pittsburgh, PA: ETC Press.

Steeves, V. (2014). Young Canadians in a Wired World. Phase III, Life Online. Canada: MediaSmarts.

Trust, T. (2012). Professional learning networks designed for teacher learning. Journal of Digital Learning in Teacher Education, 28(4), 133e138. http://dx.doi. org/10.1080/21532974.2012.10784693.



Defining My K-12 Open Educational Practice Research Topic, Problem and Questions

“Jump Across” by Kris is licensed under CC BY 2.0

On March 25, 2014 I participated in an exploratory Google Hangout about Writing and Publishing Openly Online facilitated by  Ian O’Byrne.  Doug Belshaw wrote up a summary of the Google Hangout which included linking the actual recording HERE.

Last year, I was lucky enough to have Doug come out to my school district and start the discussion about  integrating digital literacies within a K-12 school district. I wrote about it HERE.

This week I started to take the plunge into my doctorate research problem and questions. My fearless leader Sarah Eaton suggested that we look at her blog to find more resources to support refining research questions and problems. Here is her post called How to Narrow Down Your Research Topic. I swallowed some of my fear as I start to develop my “open researcher” identity and started to remember how it felt like when I was “just an open learner”.

How does the Google Hangout in 2014 and Sarah’s post connect? Both examples model open researching using a participatory approach which is using the power of networks in order to share and build knowledge together.

I have been too scared to share my knowledge, and as I spent this week thinking about my topic, my problem and my research questions, I realized that I had to model what K-12 open educational practice could look like. So, as I look back on my confidence and collaboration with esteemed colleagues from March 25, 2014, I am humbly facing my fears and taking the jump “back into” the open. This means that I am looking for critical feedback, I am looking for support and I am daring to put myself out there….in order to learn in those deep and meaningful ways that were previously inconceivable….

So…what am I considering in terms of research? Here is what I am thinking about:

Research Problem:

There are a variety of factors that adversely influence the opportunity for K-12 students to learn in open and networked digital learning environments in 2017.

Some of the problem’s  key considerations for me as a researcher include:

  •  K-12 learners are exploring and learning digitally outside of traditional K-12 classrooms. There is discrepancy surrounding how student digital learning outside the classroom is being transferred or integrated into the K-12 classroom.
  • The learning students are doing outside of the classroom could be better supported by development of competency in digital literacies that connects learning outside and inside formal classrooms.
  • Without experience learning open and networked learning environments, teachers are less likely to have an open learning mindset and able to model open educational practices in their classroom.

Research Question:

How does a teacher’s Open Educational Practice support the development of digital literacies for K-12 students?


What impact does Open Educational Practice have in K-12 Learning Environments?

Key Learning Models to Support Research Problem/Question

K-12 Open Educational Practice

Indicators of K-12 Open Educational Practice Licensed CC-BY Roberts & Blomgren (2017 – in publication)

Digital Literacies:

Elements of Digital Literacies – Doug Belshaw (2011)

A great post that summarizes the 8 Elements of Digital Literacies is written by Kevin McLaughlin and is found HERE

Initial Literature Review Organization:

A. Key Definitions:

What are Digital Literacies?

What is Open Educational Practice in K-12 Learning Environments?

What are the indicators of K-12 Open Educational Practice?

  • Open Educational Resources (OER)
  • Open Learning Design
  • Participatory Culture
  • Networked Learning
  • Digital Learning Spaces
  • Open Readiness

B. Key Questions:

What is the theoretical framework behind Open Educational Practice?

What are examples of current research that include aspects of OEP in K-12 learning environments?

I look forward to your feedback and support as I jump into deep end of learning in the open. What are your initial thoughts and reactions?

Verena 🙂




Belshaw, D. (2011). The Essential Elements of Digital Literacies. Available from under a CC BY license.

Roberts, V., Blomgren, C., Peters, K. & L. Graham  (Unpublished). Open Educational Practice in K-12 online and blended learning environments. In R. Ferdig & K. Kennedy’s Revised Handbook of Research on K-12 Online and Blended Learning. Pittsburgh, PA: ETC Press.