eLearning Africa 2008

This week, members of the University of Michigan Health Sciences Open Educational Resources (U-M OER) initiative will attend the 3rd annual eLearning Africa conference in Accra, Ghana. eLearning Africa is the largest assembly for eLearning and distance education professionals in Africa.

As part of today’s preconference events, the visiting U-M OER team hosted a meeting with our U-M Health OER partners, including representatives from universities in Ghana, South Africa and Nigeria as well as members of key funding groups. Participants discussed topics ranging from the dScribe publishing model and delivery platform options of Health OER materials to the co-creation of new educational materials and suggestions for future projects.

This meeting made possible with contributions from the Hewlett Foundation, the Soros Open Society Institute, the Foundation for Advancement of International Medical Education and Research, and the University of Michigan.

Berkman Center for Internet and Society: 10th Anniversary Event

copyright: Harvard Law School

Harvard Law School’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society is celebrating its 10th Anniversary May 15th – May16th with an event called Berkman@10.  The two day event features a selection of distinguished speakers, several breakout sessions, book releases, and other presentations that explore cyberspace, the future of the internet, open education, open media, cooperation, transparency in government, and a host of other relevant themes.

One of the coolest aspects of the event, by far, is the number of ways for those of us who aren’t there to plug-in to what’s taking place. David Weinberger and others have put together a list of social tools event attendees are utilizing to capture and communicate in real time, including Twitter, an IRC channel, Second Life, and Webcasts.

Open.Michigan presentation at Enriching Scholarship

As mentioned in an earlier post, members of the Open.Michigan team introduced the project at a presentation and workshop at Michigan’s Enriching Scholarship event this past week.

As Garin wrote:

This session will introduce participants to the OpenCourseWare (OCW) and Open Educational Resource (OER) movements and focus on our current Open.Michigan project. We’ll explain the pilot OER program within the U-M health sciences schools and discuss the development of the “dScribe” initiative – our sustainable, student-centered publishing model that connects motivated students and interested faculty in a collaborative teaching / learning environment.

Dentistry: Podcasting Cadavers

ClipArt.comThe UM School of Dentistry has over a thousand educational videos created in the 1970s and 80s. Some are out of date, but many are still highly relevant. One part of the collection is a set of gross anatomy videos that show human cadaver dissections.

We realized that cadavers are disturbing to many people; however, the respectful study of cadavers provides an insight into human anatomy that is unmatched by most other methods. This opportunity is often not available to people at small colleges, in high schools, in developing countries, and even at larger US universities as fewer and fewer people bequeath their bodies to science upon their deaths.

Therefore, we’ve decided to produce this set of gross anatomy videos (covering not just the neck and jaw but
much of the rest of the body, as well) as a set of freely-downloadable podcasts for use in educational settings – or just for those curious to see how their muscles fit together under the skin.

Dentistry: Keynotes, Implants and Anatomy

Here at the School of Dentistry, we’re working on making some of our existing trove of dental videos available to the world. We’ve started with videos of important school speakers, a series of demonstrations on creating dental implants, and some archival anatomy videos.

The anatomy videos are up to thirty years old, but the content is still good! And there are secret hopes that Dr. Charlick will win over the hearts of the dentistry world with his lively mix of plaids, stripes, and checks and those truly impressive sideburns.