Glossary of Site Terms

frequently used terms, and their definitions

Accessible = Being free of restriction, password access, fee for access, or format limitations, but also in terms of bandwidth minimization, and usable for people with disabilities.

Attribution = Identifying who has originally created a published work - may be a requirement of a license if an item is repurposed or re-used.

Community of Practice = A group with a common interest, craft or profession. Communities of Practice can evolve naturally or be created for a specific purpose.

Copyright = A form of 'intellectual property' that gives the owner (usually the author) of an original work exclusive rights relating to the copying, dissemination and adaption of the work. Less restrictive copyright licenses are available - see 'Creative Commons Licenses'.

Creative Commons License = One of several public copyright licenses that allow the distribution of copyrighted works. Creative Commons Licenses are applied to published work online and offer simple and clear information about what other people can and can't do with that work.

Dissemination = The spreading of knowledge and information.

Exchange = To make resources available with the guarantee, or at least the expectation, that the beneficiary will reciprocate.

Granularity = The pedagogic scale of a resource - ranging from a single image to an entire online course.

Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) = A generic term that relates to copyright, trademarks, patents and other claims for 'ownership' of a resource - whether registered or unregistered.

Learning resources = Educational resources, digital or otherwise, used to support learning.

Learning Object = A collection of content items, practice items, and assessment items that are combined based on a single learning objective.

Metadata = 'Data about data' - i.e. detailed characteristics about a data set, often gained by tagging resources.

OCW = Open Courseware is a particular model of Open Educational Resources popularized by MIT and the Open Courseware Consortium, Materials are presented as being organized around the model of a course offered to traditional students.

OER = Documents, media, software and processes that are useful to teaching, learning, education and assessment, and that are made openly accessible and reusable by anyone for any purpose, free of barriers or restrictions.

OER Has the Following Characteristics:

1. Freely accessible content, media and resources

2. Freely reusable copyrights and formats

3. Design is considerate of bandwidth and accessibility

4. Freedom and openness as principles in their production and use

Open Content = A creative work that others can copy or modify.

Open Movement = A term used as a catchall to refer to attempts to make information freely available. This includes, amongst others, Open Source Software, Open Educational Resources and Open Access.

Open Source Software = Software where the programmer(s) allow access to the 'source code', or programming language. Anyone is free to use and/or modify this code for his or her own purposes.

Open Standards = Public standards, usually divided into those created formally by a standardization body.

Open textbooks = Traditional textbooks, aside from being expensive can also be inconvenient and out of date, because of publishers' tendency to constantly print new editions. Open textbooks help to eliminate this problem, because they are online and thus easily updatable. Being openly licensed and online can be helpful to teachers, because it allows the textbook to be modified according to the teacher's unique curriculum.

Reusable and adaptable = The copyright explicitly permits reuse (including republishing, modification, and commercial uses), the format doesn't restrict access or reuse, and very often the resource is editable in it’s original form.

Repository = A place to put resources for safekeeping and dissemination.

Re-purposing = To make use of a resource either after modification or for a purpose other than that for which it was originally created.

The 4 Rs:

Reuse = the right to reuse the content in its unaltered / verbatim form (e.g., make a backup copy of the content)

Revise = the right to adapt, adjust, modify, or alter the content itself (e.g., translate the content into another language)

Remix = the right to combine the original or revised content with other content to create something new (e.g., incorporate the content into a mashup)

Redistribute = the right to share copies of the original content, your revisions, or your remixes with others (e.g., give a copy of the content to a friend)

RSS = Most commonly 'Really Simple Syndication' but also 'Rich Site Summary', RSS is a standard technology that standardizes the publication of regularly updated websites. These can be re-used, embedded and 'mashed-up' easily for accessibility and to create added value.

Sharing = To make resources available without expectation of a reciprocal act.

Stakeholder = An individual or group with an interest in the success of an organization or project.