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If we use basic notions such as “access” and “ usability” as our touchstones for OER we do not have to worry so much about if they are intended for formal or informal educational purposes, or if they are going to be used for relieving human suffering, home schooling, personal development, integration into a traditional university curriculum, etc. The point is that they are available, and right now, as it has been pointed out, there is a lot of content available. Could it be made more accessible or useful? Can we do anything to help teachers and learners use and modify OER in ways that make sense for them given their needs?

17. ken udas -february 23rd, 2008 at 11:20 am

This comment form “jsener” sort of slipped through the cracks and I think that it merits some thought.

I also disagree with the assertions that online learning in the U.S. “has not delivered on the promise of increased access” and has fared better for quality. There are now over three million online learners annually in U.S. higher education and probably over 12 million cumulatively since its inception. The majority of this has happened at community colleges, for which access is an integral part of their mission. How does this not represent an increase in access? While I think that online learning has finally succeeded in establishing a perception and reality of quality, IMO this still lags behind relative to its achievements in improving access. If online learning failed to deliver relative to some of its initial hype, the fault is with the hype.

I happen to agree with this. I feel that Online learning in the U.S. has, on the aggregate, increased access to higher education, but it might have done so with differential impact on different learner communities. For example in the “golden age” of paper-based distance education, incarcerated learners were relatively well served through distance education. That is, many facilities provided enough access to paper based materials to allow an inmate to engage in a formal distance education program. Very few prisons allow Internet access to inmates, significantly reducing access to that learner population for this modality. This becomes an access issue when institutions move from traditional paper-based distance learning delivery methods to online.

I wonder too, what percentage of institutions with a history in traditional distance education (Penn State, UMUC, Open Polytechnic of NZ, Open University UK, UNISA, University of Wisconsin, etc.) have moved away from paper and only offer their programs online. I also wonder if tuition and fees have risen disproportionally throughout the transition, creating another access issue for some learner populations.

18. christine geith -february 24th, 2008 at 5:03 am

Ken and John, appreciate your thoughtful responses in this thread. Regarding access, while what you’ve noted about participation is true, take a look at what’s in our paper (live at (External Link) ) and I think you’ll see why it’s not clear that online has increased access to degrees - albeit that’s just one definition of access.

Questions & Answers

how to know photocatalytic properties of tio2 nanoparticles...what to do now
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it is a goid question and i want to know the answer as well
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Do somebody tell me a best nano engineering book for beginners?
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what is fullerene does it is used to make bukky balls
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are you nano engineer ?
s.
fullerene is a bucky ball aka Carbon 60 molecule. It was name by the architect Fuller. He design the geodesic dome. it resembles a soccer ball.
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what is the actual application of fullerenes nowadays?
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That is a great question Damian. best way to answer that question is to Google it. there are hundreds of applications for buck minister fullerenes, from medical to aerospace. you can also find plenty of research papers that will give you great detail on the potential applications of fullerenes.
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what is the Synthesis, properties,and applications of carbon nano chemistry
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Mostly, they use nano carbon for electronics and for materials to be strengthened.
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is Bucky paper clear?
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so some one know about replacing silicon atom with phosphorous in semiconductors device?
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Yeah, it is a pain to say the least. You basically have to heat the substarte up to around 1000 degrees celcius then pass phosphene gas over top of it, which is explosive and toxic by the way, under very low pressure.
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for screen printed electrodes ?
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of graphene you mean?
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or in general
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in general
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Graphene has a hexagonal structure
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On having this app for quite a bit time, Haven't realised there's a chat room in it.
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what is biological synthesis of nanoparticles
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what's the easiest and fastest way to the synthesize AgNP?
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China
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types of nano material
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many many of nanotubes
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Yes, Nanotechnology has a very fast field of applications and their is always something new to do with it...
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good afternoon madam
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what is system testing
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what is the application of nanotechnology?
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In this morden time nanotechnology used in many field . 1-Electronics-manufacturad IC ,RAM,MRAM,solar panel etc 2-Helth and Medical-Nanomedicine,Drug Dilivery for cancer treatment etc 3- Atomobile -MEMS, Coating on car etc. and may other field for details you can check at Google
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anybody can imagine what will be happen after 100 years from now in nano tech world
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after 100 year this will be not nanotechnology maybe this technology name will be change . maybe aftet 100 year . we work on electron lable practically about its properties and behaviour by the different instruments
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name doesn't matter , whatever it will be change... I'm taking about effect on circumstances of the microscopic world
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silver nanoparticles could handle the job?
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not now but maybe in future only AgNP maybe any other nanomaterials
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I'm interested in Nanotube
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this technology will not going on for the long time , so I'm thinking about femtotechnology 10^-15
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can nanotechnology change the direction of the face of the world
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how did you get the value of 2000N.What calculations are needed to arrive at it
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Source:  OpenStax, The impact of open source software on education. OpenStax CNX. Mar 30, 2009 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col10431/1.7
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