Open Educational Resources in the People's Republic of China - Achievements, Challenges and Prospects for Development

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Full title


Page length: xx pages.

Date: 2011


Chunyan Wang (Renmin University of China and Creative Commons China Mainland) and Guodong Zhao (Peking University)


While the Open Educational Resources (OER) movement trails its way in China, scholars and researchers in the fields of education, copyright law, computer science and network technology are paying more and more attention to this new undertaking. Numerous publications focusing on OER analyzed or introduced nearly all aspects of OER, including its history, background, prospect and technological and copyright solutions. However, the existing publications mostly deal with one or several aspects for the OER movement or a specific programme (most often the Chinese Quality Course Project and the China Open Resources for Education). Comprehensive studies of the entire Chinese OER movement are currently unavailable. There are no publications on the barriers and obstacles faced by OER producers, no analysis of the overall situation and solutions.

This report sums up the existing publications on the Chinese OER movement and provides results of an analytical survey and statistical research to present the state-of-the-art, challenges and prospects for the development of OER in China. It reviews educational theories, technological solutions and laws and regulations concerning OER to outline advantages and problems of the Chinese OER projects and to describe possible future obstacles. The report describes the approaches, copyright issues and management issues of the most successful OER initiatives in the People’s Republic of China. Finally, the report provides solutions for the most frequent problems and analyzes the prospect of OER in China.

This study makes use of available publications and statistics on certain OER projects. As for the ICT infrastructure in P.R. China, this report compiles a survey based on the statistics provided by the China Internet Network Information Centre, the state network information center of China. For statistics representing the current situation with access to and impact of OER, this report uses the existing spot check results. Those checks were carried out mostly in universities among teachers and students.

As required by IITE, the report also employs the method of case studies to introduce the most successful OER projects in China. Those projects include Chinese open courseware projects, the most influential educational programmes initiated by the state and the most popular Creative Commons sharing projects and repositories.


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