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Adoption and Use of Open Educational Resources at Botswana Open University

Lekopanye L. Tladi, Tebogo E. Seretse


The purpose of the study was to investigate the adoption of open educational resources (OER) at Botswana Open University (BOU). The paper examines the journey the university traversed over the years, both as a user and contributor of OER resources. The problem was that despite the institution’s involvement in a number of OER initiatives since 2009, it was observed that OER uptake was still slow. The objective of the study was therefore to investigate the perceptions of the academic staff involved in the use of OER programmes so as to examine the successes and challenges experienced by BOU in adopting and implementing OER. The following research questions were posed: What are the perceptions of academic staff on the OER? What skills are required for effective utilisation of OER? What are the challenges experienced in using the OER? The methodology followed a qualitative case study approach and used document analysis with an open-ended written questionnaire as methods for data collection. The research population comprised four lecturers and purposive sampling was preferred. Some of the key findings were that OER were useful, good quality, cost saving and time saving. One of the outstanding findings was that academic staff lacked adequate training on the use of OER. They also required provision of adequate ICT and connectivity resources. Some of the challenges highlighted were inadequate funding as well as an inadequate academic staff complement. The paper recommends possible solutions to address some of these challenges at a local level in line with international trends. Consideration should also be made to capacitate the academic structures of the university with more qualified personnel to take responsibility for programme design and course content using OER.

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