Introduction to Open Praxis volume 8 issue 3
Introduction to Open Praxis volume 8 issue 3
Inés Gil-Jaurena 0
0 Editor for Open Praxis. Universidad Nacional de Educación a Distancia - UNED , Spain
Dr. Gangappa Kuruba is Senior Lecturer in the Faculty of Business, University of Botswana. He
is presently working as Executive Assistant to the Vice Chancellor, University of Botswana. He has
been working at this institution for the last 27 years in different capacities: Coordinator of Extension
programmes, Head of Extra Mural and Public Education, and Acting Director at the Centre for
Continuing Education. While working at this Centre he participated in various conferences and
published on Distance Education.
Dr. Hemlata Chari completed her PhD from University of Alberta, Canada. She is presently working
as Deputy Director- Academic, at the Institute of Distance and Open Learning-IDOL, University of
Mumbai, India. In charge of Virtual Learning Centre and Study Material Unit. She supervises doctoral
students; designs, develops and delivers course material; and peer-reviews for higher education
and distance learning journals.
Dr. S. Joel Warrican is the Director of the Academic Programming and Delivery division within
The University of the West Indies Open Campus, in Barbados. He is responsible for the planning,
development and delivery of the online programmes offered by the campus.
From January 2013 to June 2016, two other scholars have been members of the Editorial Board,
and we want to thank them for their contribution to the development of Open Praxis during this
Professor Marta Mena is Director of the Virtual Training Program for Researchers of the Secretariat
of Science, Technology and Graduate Studies of the National Technological University (Universidad
Tecnológica Nacional), Argentina. She was member of the ICDE Executive Committee until 2016
and member of the Open Praxis Editorial Board on behalf of it.
Finally, Dr. Suresh C. Garg has been Professor of Physics at Indira Gandhi National Open
University, New Delhi, India, since 1993. He was former Pro-Vice Chancellor at IGNOU (2002–
2006). He has recently retired from IGNOU.
The expected tasks as members of the Editorial Board are:
Advocacy, promotion of the journal in their institution and professional networks
Suggestion of additional reviewers
Invitation to potential authors
Advice in case of doubts in the acceptance of a paper
Proposal for special issues
Also, Editorial Board members participate in the selection process of the ICDE Prizes for Innovation
and Best Practice in Open, Distance, Flexible, Online Education and E-learning. The first edition
took place in 2013
(Gil-Jaurena & Malik, 2013)
, the second one in 2015
(Gil-Jaurena & Malik, 2015)
and the 3rd edition is expected in 2017, linked to the 27th ICDE World Conference to be held in
Before joining the Editorial Board, some of its current members had contributed to Open Praxis
in different ways: three of them had published in Open Praxis in its new stage:
Tynan and James
Warrican et al. (2014)
; and Hemlata Chari had been a reviewer in 2013 and
After this presentation, below an introduction to the contributions that compose this issue.
In the first paper, Mehmet Firat (Measuring the e-Learning Autonomy of Distance Education
Students) focuses on the autonomy of students in distance education environments, analyzed with
a scale that has been used in his institution, Anadolu University in Turkey. The scale is included in
an appendix and the paper evaluates its validity and reliability, as well as the results once applied
with a sample of students.
In the second paper, Aras Bozkurt, Nilgun Ozdamar Keskin and Inge de Waard (Research Trends
in Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) Theses and Dissertations: Surfing the Tsunami Wave)
review 51 master thesis and doctoral dissertations related to MOOCs to identify research trends in
this area. They characterize them by analyzing the areas, methods and conceptual frameworks
used in those academic works, providing an overview that complements other studies focused on
reviewing scientific literature about MOOCs.
Also about MOOCs, Rebecca Bayeck (Exploratory study of MOOC learners’ demographics and
motivation: The case of students involved in groups) presents a case study of the MOOC Creativity,
Innovation and Change, which included voluntary group work; it is this particularity that is analyzed
in the paper. She provides demographic data and studies the motivations for enrolment in the
course. Even if the profiles don’t differ much from those identified by other researches, the author
points to some findings related to group work.
Olga Belikov and Robert Bodily (Incentives and barriers to OER adoption: A qualitative analysis
of faculty perceptions) analyze the perception about OER among US faculty, collected through an
open question included in a larger survey. The categorization of the free answers leads to identify
a set of drivers and barriers to OER adoption that are explained in the paper and exemplified with
quotations from the respondents.
Also presenting a study on faculty perceptions and identifying barriers, Sujata Santosh and
Santosh Panda (Sharing of Knowledge among Faculty in a Mega Open University) focus on faculty
attitudes towards sharing knowledge. The survey-based study was developed at the Indira Gandhi
National Open University in India and presents an outlook of the behaviours, trends and suggestions
for improving the knowledge sharing culture.
In the last paper, Barbara Illowsky, John Hilton III, Justin Whiting and Jordan Ackerman (Examining
Student Perception of an Open Statistics Book) compare students’ perception about open textbooks
vs. traditional textbooks, through the study of the perception of users of a specific open textbook
that had been updated and improved. The students were asked about quality and cost of the open
textbook, and the paper provides insight to understand students’ perception about educational
Finally, the issue includes a review by William Stewart of the book Learning Online: What Research
Tells Us About Whether, When and How, published in 2014 in the USA.
We thank to the authors and the reviewers for their valuable contributions.
Gil-Jaurena , I. ( 2014 ). Brief report on Open Praxis editorial process . Open Praxis , 6 ( 4 ), 317 - 319 . http://dx.doi.org/10.5944/openpraxis.6.4. 169
Gil-Jaurena , I. , & Malik , B. ( 2011 ). Editorial project for Open Praxis . Unpublished project.
Gil-Jaurena , I. , & Malik , B. ( 2013 ). Innovation and best practice in open and distance education . Open Praxis , 5 ( 4 ), 261 - 263 . http://dx.doi.org/10.5944/openpraxis.5.4. 103
Gil-Jaurena , I. , & Malik , B. ( 2015 ). Innovation, research and best practice in open and distance education . Open Praxis , 7 ( 4 ), 283 - 285 . http://dx.doi.org/10.5944/openpraxis.7.4. 268
Jacobson , T. & Mackey , T . (eds.) ( 2016 ). Metaliteracy in Practice. ALA Neal-Schuman.
Mackey , T. & Jacobson , T. ( 2011 ). Reframing Information Literacy as a Metaliteracy . College & Research Libraries , 72 ( 1 ), 62 - 78 . http://dx.doi.org/10.5860/crl-76r1
Mackey , T. & Jacobson , T. ( 2014 ). Metaliteracy: Reinventing Information Literacy to Empower Learners. American Library Association.
Tait , A. ( 2014 ). From place to virtual space: reconfiguring student support for distance and elearning in the digital age . Open Praxis , 6 ( 1 ), 5 - 16 . http://dx.doi.org/10.5944/openpraxis.6.1. 102
Tynan , B. , & James , R. ( 2013 ). Distance education regulatory frameworks: Readiness for openness in Southwest Pacific/South East Asia region nations . Open Praxis , 5 ( 1 ), 91 - 97 . http://dx.doi. org/10.5944/openpraxis.5.1. 31
Warrican , S. , Leacock , C. , Thompson , B. , & Alleyne , M. ( 2014 ). Predictors of Student Success in an Online Learning Environment in the English-Speaking Caribbean: Evidence from the University of the West Indies Open Campus . Open Praxis, 6 ( 4 ), 331 - 346 . http://dx.doi.org/10.5944/ openpraxis.6.4. 158