Skip to main content

Research on Open Educational Resources (2014-ongoing)

Type of resource: 
Research Papers and Reports

The Subject Teacher Forum (STF) is an “in-service teacher education” programme for high school teachers in Karnataka was started in 2010-11 by RMSA Karnataka, in collaboration with IT for Change. The Karnataka Open Educational Resources (KOER) is a programme for high school teachers in Karnataka, embedded within the STF. KOER was started in 2013-14 by DSERT Karnataka, in collaboration with IT for Change. Over the last two years, ITfC has trained around 300 Government High School teachers on this collaborative “Open Educational Resources” (OER) programme embedded within the STF to access, create, review, adapt, share and publish OERs. Teachers are working on creating supplementary and complementary resources for the class IX and class X topics as per the state syllabus. The STF programme has also taken the KOER programme across to teachers in the state and the KOER site has registered more than 5000,000 hits in around three years. The KOER portal is developed in English and Kannada (state language of Karnataka) languages.

ITfC conducted a participatory action research of the KOER programme, to understand “whether and how, a bottom-up approach, where participants collaboratively and actively co-create contextual resources ('embedded' within a 'community of learning'), can support effective OER models” The objectives of this case study were to understand how a collaborative learning community can support a sustainable environment for OER access-creation-curation-publishing as well as become a systemic method of teacher professional development in the public education system. The broad objectives of the action research were as follows:

  1. To study how a collaborative (KOER) OER model can be embedded within a local ecosystem of a “community of teachers” (STF), in Karnataka state, in India

  2. To understand how such a locally anchored, collaborative OER model can develop effective processes of creation-curation-adoption that contribute to sustained use of OER and teacher development

The study was a part of a global study on OERs in the global south – the Research on Open Educational Resources for Development (ROER4D). The ROER4D project, anchored by the University of Cape Town, aims to provide evidence-based research from a number of countries in South America, Sub-Saharan Africa and South east Asia. The primary objective of the programme is to improve educational policy, practice, and research in developing countries by better understanding the use and impact of OER.

Resource creation workshops were conducted for a select cohort of 67 mathematics, science and social science high school teachers and in these workshops, discussions on the nature of OER, collaborative resource creation, use of digital methods and resources, teacher development etc have provided useful insights.

Participant teachers responded to structured questionnaires and participated in focus group discussions on these aspects. In addition, the research studied the nature of resources created and patterns of access, creation and sharing on the STF forums and on the KOER portal. The study suggests that teachers are able to use digital methods to adopt OER, and to contextualize it to their needs. The OER processes have aided teacher professional development through increasing teacher agency in the exploration and utilization of resources, and in their active collaboration with peers. Based on interviews with key actors, comprising these 67 teachers, teacher educators and education administrators, the systemic factors that enabled and constrained the participatory resource creation model have been analyzed.

The participatory resource creation model, used in this action research has been acknowledged as a national best practice by a review mission1 of the Government of India. Other state governments2 have evinced an interest to adapt this model in their own in-service teacher education programmes.



1See Report of Joint Review Mission (JRM) of the Ministry of Human Resource Development, which is responsible for education in the federal government.

2Including Telangana and Assam state governments


Abstract of the research report, March 2016215.45 KB
Presentation made on the research at the Education Research Group meeting, April 2016971.23 KB