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.



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  1. Pingback: Open Educational Practice Lit Review Version 1.0 | Creating an Open Classroom

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