[eIFLoa] Talis Incubator for Open Education
iryna.kuchma at eifl.net
Wed Aug 19 10:07:15 EEST 2009
funding opportunity for open education projects
*What is Open Education?
In the words of the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation: “Open Education is
the simple and powerful idea that the world’s knowledge is a public good and
that technology in general and the Worldwide Web in particular provide an
extraordinary opportunity for everyone to share, use, and reuse knowledge”
In the same way that Open Source software allows developers to freely use,
share and remix code, fuelling new innovation and the exchange of ideas,
Open Education Resources (OERs) are instructional materials can be freely
reused, revised, remixed and redistributed to deliver education and spread
knowledge. Typical types of materials include text books, videos, test
questions, research papers, software, and even complete syllabi.
The emerging areas of open assessment and open accreditation are advancing
the discussion about how learning is assessed and recognised in a system
where access and delivery of education is open.
Rather than just a new set of techniques or tools, the adoption of Open
Education is a significant change in philosophy from the traditional models
of formal education that have been followed for hundreds of years.
Technology, specifically the internet, provides opportunity to make learning
an accessible, inclusive, connected, collaborative and personalised
experience for learners.
Open Education has the potential to change the shape of how we think about
learning, and the Talis Incubator for Open Education is an opportunity to
explore ideas and seed new innovation and thinking.
*1. What kind of projects will be considered?
Projects need to use technology to help solve a problem related to Open
Education. Here are some examples of the types of projects that would be
eligible for funding:
Creation and publication of Open Education Resources for others to use
Creation of a new (or extension of an existing) open source software tool
allowing educators to author content.
Creation of datasets related to the field of Open Education - for example
you could curate or publish data relating to all open syllabi as linked open
Conducting a research study of how Open Assessment could be applied to a
particular subject area and submitting this to a relevant conference. In
this case you can bid for expenses to attend the conference if your
submission is successful.
Working towards the creation and adoption of open standards and frameworks
that support the adoption of Open Education.
*2. What does ‘open sourcing’ the intellectual property mean?
The key criteria to keep in mind when submitting your proposal is that you
must be able to demonstrate that you are contributing the outputs of the
project (the intellectual property) back into the community. Some examples
of how to do this include:
Making sure your work is licensed with an appropriate open licence so that
it can be reused, remixed and redistributed.
For creative works, review the available Creative Commons licenses.
For data sets or compilation of factual data, consider licenses such as Open
For software, consider open source software licenses such as LGPL.
Ensure your work is deposited in an accessible place on-line so it can
easily be accessed. For data, Talis operate a scheme called Talis Connected
Commons, which allows free hosting of large datasets. Documents can be
placed in the ALT Open Access Respository. Wherever you deposit your work,
the crucial point is that it should be free and easy for others to access
If you create a research paper, make sure it gets submitted to an open
access journal, or that you retain rights which allow you to redistribute
your work elsewhere
*3. How much funding can I apply for?
Typically, you can apply for between £1,000 and £15,000 of funding. For
truly exceptional projects we may consider extending the upper limit, but
this will be at the expense of funding other projects as there is a cap on
the overall amount of funding available for the year.
*4. How many awards will be made?
The scheme runs for 12 months in total and we will have two funding rounds
during the course of the year (see important dates). We are looking to fund
one large, one medium and a handful of small projects in each round but the
actual spread and number of awards ultimately depends on the type of
proposals we receive.
*5. What other kinds of help can I get aside from funding?
We’re keen to do whatever we can to make your project successful.
Depending on the nature of your project, Talis could provide technical
infrastructure such as data hosting or access to Talis Platform services. In
addition, we could also provide limited office space and other facilities in
order to help you complete the project. This not only gives you a desk to
work at, but puts you in daily contact with the Talis Education team, who
are developing the next generation of innovative semantic web applications.
We may also be able to put you in contact with an appropriate mentor
(technical or otherwise) to help you develop your ideas.
In all cases, it’s best to contact us via incubator at talis.com to discuss any
additional help you need before submitting your proposal.
*6. How do I apply?*
You need to write a proposal, according to the guidelines (
http://blogs.talis.com/education/incubator/guidelines/), and submit it to
incubator at talis.com. Our proposal review board will convene twice during the
12 months the scheme is running (see important dates) to consider which
projects will get funding.
*7. Who can apply?*
There are no restrictions on who can apply for funding - you can work in
primary education, K12, college/HE or with community projects, or none of
the above. What is important is your idea and that it forwards the cause of
We also welcome applications from outside the UK, however we regret that we
can only consider and award amounts in GBP (£), so if you are from outside
the UK please account for exchange rate fluctuation, and make sure you can
receive funds paid in GBP.
The submission deadline for proposals for the first round of awards is the
31st December 2009, with the first awards made towards the middle of March
The submission deadline for the second round is the 31st June 2010, with the
awards made towards the middle of September 2010.
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