Let’s consider Open Education Resources (OERs) as:
· Open courseware and content
· Open software tools
· Open material for e-learning capacity
· Repositoires of learning objects
· Free educational courses.
If we consider Open Education as freely available on non-commercial terms the different alternatives we have on sustainability of Open Education Resources (OERs) become critical. There are different models for funding Open Education:
Endowment model: the project is sustained from interest earned on managed funds to be previously obtained.
1. Membership model: interested organizations are invited to contribute or subscribe.
2. Donations model: supported by donations.
3. Conversion model: giving something for free and convert later into a paying customer.
4. Contributor-pay model: contributors pay the cost to make possible the provider to supply for free.
5. Sponsorship model: sponsor explicitly contributes to get a return for its action.
6. Institutional model: Institution pays as part of its mission.
7. Governmental model: project is funded by government agencies.
8. Partnerships and exchanges: the output of the exchange is an OER.
We should also take into account that the development and distribution of the OERs need to be accomplished. So, access, usability/reusability and quality are to be considered. Finally, the production of the resources requires a staff to complete the work, which in some case, but not in all, they make be staffed with volunteers, which also demand some level of organizations.
The concept of Open Education is widely considered here as a the capability of getting access, the possibility of having a conversation, individual networked centricity and dynamic self-determining educational paths, to mentions a few of them.
Be the Universal Access to Internet services and tools a change in paradigm which will bring a new level of literacy in Education?