Visual citation navigation of open education resources using Litmaps | Emerald Insight

Abstract:  Purpose

The purpose of this study is to visualize the key literature on the topic “Open Educational Resources” using the research discovery tool “Litmaps”.


Litmaps visual citation navigation, the ultimate science discovery platform, is used for the present study. It provides an interface for discovering scientific literature, explores the research landscape and discovers articles that are highly connected to maps. Litmaps provides quick-start options to import articles from reference manager, keyword search, ORCID ID, DOI or using a seed article. In this paper, “keyword search” and research strategy “Open Educational Resources” or “OER” are put to use.


The findings of the study revealed that Litmaps gives citations between articles over time visually. The map generated is dynamic as it is adjustable for making the map according to the researcher’s needs.

Research limitations/implications

Litmaps helps researchers in doing the literature review in a very brief and systematic way. It is helpful in finding the related or relevant studies through the seed paper/keyword search.


The study makes a useful contribution to the literature on this topic as one can independently find research topics and also compare topic overlapping. The study provides insights that help researchers in building citation maps and see connections between articles over time. The originality of the present paper lies in highlighting the importance of the research discovery tool Litmaps for the researchers as so far, to the best of the authors’ knowledge, no research has been taken place on using it.

The Edge: Can Digital Courseware Promote Equity?

“It’s too soon to predict the impact of a four-year, $65-million project to develop low-cost digital courseware with the lofty goal of reducing disparities by race, ethnicity, and income in about 20 gateway courses. But several aspects of this effort by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation already seem worth highlighting, as do the questions they raise.

First, some background. The gateway-course project aims to fix a huge problem. Nationwide, about three million students a year enroll in gen-ed courses with “perniciously” persistent completion gaps for students who are Black, Hispanic, and low-income, according to a Gates primer. That costs those students time and money or derails their education altogether.

The foundation hopes this project can reverse the trends by introducing interactive, adaptive courseware built upon proven teaching practices like learn-by-doing assignments. “Really high-quality courseware can be a tool for equity,” Alison Pendergast, the senior program officer at Gates overseeing the project, put it to me when we spoke this week.

Some 18 partners are in on the effort, including digital and open-source publishing companies (Lumen Learning, Macmillan Learning, OpenStax), universities (Arizona State and Carnegie Mellon), and a host of research organizations (too plentiful to list here, but you can see them all at this link). The first two courses in the pipeline are introductory statistics and introductory chemistry. And the plan is for a range of research and faculty-development projects to expand the availability and awareness of high-quality courseware throughout higher ed (hence all the research partners).

At this early stage, three aspects of the project stand out to me. …”

Open Education (OE) in European Libraries of Higher Education Survey 2022

“Welcome to the 2022 edition of SPARC Europe’s Survey of European academic libraries regarding Open Education (OE) and Open Education Resources (OER).

We define OE as resources, tools and practices that are free of legal, financial and technical barriers and can be fully used, shared and adapted in the digital environment.

We define OER as learning, teaching and research materials that reside in the public domain or are under copyright that have been released under an open license, that permit no-cost access, re-use, re-purpose, adaptation and redistribution by others. 

This survey was developed in consultation with members of the European Network of Open Education Librarians (ENOEL): The aim of this survey is to explore the work done by academic librarians to implement the UNESCO OER Recommendation, published in Nov 2019, and is structured around its five areas of action….”

In Keeping with Academic Tradition: Copyright ownership in higher education and potential implications for Open Education | Journal of Copyright in Education & Librarianship

Abstract:  Most postsecondary institutions in the United States have a copyright and/or intellectual property (IP) ownership policy, outlining under various circumstances the ownership of copyright and IP generated by faculty, staff, and students (Patel, 1996). As awareness of open educational resources (OER) increases and both faculty and student creation of openly licensed materials builds momentum, a closer examination of copyright ownership policies and what legal and ethical implications they may have for open education is crucial. This study analyzed 109 copyright ownership policies at both public and independent two-year and four-year postsecondary institutions of higher education in the U.S. and surveyed facilitators of open education initiatives (generally librarians and related educators) at these same institutions (N = 51) to gather the perceptions and preferences of their copyright policies with respect to locally-developed OER.

The content analysis revealed that while the ownership of scholarly works overwhelmingly belongs to the person who created the work, variables such as unusual support and potential uses affect copyright ownership. These factors can be problematic for faculty who receive support through campus programs to create and share openly licensed instructional materials beyond their institution and are also problematic for students participating in OER-enabled pedagogy coursework and projects. While our survey showed that many in the open community indicate that they have great confidence in their understanding of these policies, that certainty is often pinned to a sense of shared values and unspoken assumptions, rather than clear legal rules or reliable policy.

Open Education Conference

“The Open Education Conference is an annual convening for sharing and learning about open educational resources, open pedagogy, and open education initiatives. This dynamic gathering celebrates the core values of open education that strive to realize education ecosystems that are accessible, affordable, equitable and inclusive to everyone, regardless of their background.

Building on a seventeen-year history, the conference is in the process of redesigning itself through a community-driven planning process, guided by a Steering Committee and organizing partnership.

The call for participation for the 2021 conference organizing process is open! Learn more on how to sign up or participate in our next community meeting….”

OE Global Conference 2021-2022 – Global Congress for Implementation of UNESCO OER Recommendation

“The Open Education Global 2021& 2022 conference series is co-hosted by Open Education Global and the Université de Nantes. Both events are entirely focused on presenting existing solutions and practices that inform and guide the implementation of the UNESCO OER Recommendation. The Open Education Global in-person congress will take place from May 23–25, 2022 in Nantes, France.

For over 10 years, the Open Education Global annual conference has been the main annual event for open education practitioners, policy builders, and decision-makers. Supporters, advocates, and students from around the world explore the OEGlobal opportunity to share, collaborate, learn, network, and celebrate each other’s work and benefit through a broad, dynamic, and innovative collective vision of Open Education.”

2021–22 Institute on Open Educational Resources | AAC&U

“The AAC&U Institute on Open Educational Resources (OER) is designed for campuses aspiring to launch or expand initiatives to develop or leverage free and affordable materials in teaching and learning contexts….

In July 2021, AAC&U, with expertise and leadership from OpenStax and ISKME, is launching a new Institute on Open Educational Resources (OER). Utilizing a new institute model, the Institute on OER provides a year-long, online engagement opportunity for teams from campuses or state systems seeking to actualize an ambitious strategy to broaden campus engagement with and adoption of OER. This new model directly engages the OER Institute teams for a full year via virtual events and interactions as participants’ OER implementation and acceleration plans are put into practice.”



HBCU Affordable Learning Solutions Community Portal

“The HBCU Affordable Learning Community is building a collection of free and open educational resources to support faculty and students teaching and learning in Africana, African American, and Black Studies programs as well as bringing the Africana, African American, and Black Studies content and context into all disciplines. We know the topic areas within the collection will expand over time with the participation and leadership of the HBCU community.”

Pressbooks Reflects on a Growing Movement and How Librarians Can Move OER Forward – Charleston Hub


The open education movement has been around for over two decades, with much of its early efforts emerging out of the work of the Hewlett Foundation, David Wiley, and other innovators.  In 2014, creators of open educational resources (OER) — like Lumen Learning, run by David Wiley, and BCcampus, an organization that supports post-secondary learners and institutions in British Columbia, Canada — started using Pressbooks to create and optionally host their content.  These people and organizations saw the absurd rate at which the price of textbooks was growing, the impacts those prices had on the quality of students’ lives, and the challenges these costs present faculty in their choice of material.  They found an alternative:  free and open textbooks hosted natively on the web.  Not only did these early adopters concern themselves with the cost of textbooks, but they also made transparency of the publishing process a key element of their best practices, thus ensuring the quality of OER could be assessed by librarians and faculty who might adopt and adapt those materials.  Eight years after those early adopters began their OER creation projects, Pressbooks now hosts OER for over 100 institutions across North America.


“Researching factors influencing faculty engagement with open practices” by Jessica Kirschner

“Researching factors influencing faculty engagement with open practices” provides an overview of a current research project at VCU which is attempting to identify which factors influence faculty engagement with open practices (for this project, publishing an open access article or book or creating or customizing OER), focusing on the VCU School of Education. An initial quantitative survey has been completed and the project will soon move to a qualitative data collection phase of interviews and focus groups. This presentation provides an overview on the current project status, initial results, how the team hopes to apply our findings, and next steps. Initial results includes how faculty are generally supportive of the concept of open, but are unsure how it will be received by promotion and tenure committees.

Decolonising Open Educational Resources (OER): Why the focus on ‘open’ and ‘access’ is not enough for the EdTech revolution – EdTech Hub

“Open Educational Resources have offered a number of promises and opportunities, primarily in terms of customising learning to students’ needs, pace, and interests. Additionally, it has provided teachers with a wide range of customisation and collaboration options. On the flip side, there is a difference between thinking about new developments in an operational sense and in a social sense. Thinking of developments in education in a technological dimension relates to their operational sense and stops there. However, such developments acquire social and cultural meanings beyond mere function. We understand the latter by looking at what happens in practice as people, communities, cultures, and systems interact with and react to these developments. In effect, there are inherent assumptions within OER that several scholars have taken  a critical look at:

Education science is universal (it is not!) (King, 1999)
Learning outcomes are the benchmark (they are not!) (Fasheh, 1990)
‘Open’ is neutral and apolitical – and so is education data (they are not!)  (Watters, 2014) 
‘Open’ removes systemic barriers to access (not necessarily!) (Bali et al., 2018)
‘Open’ is inherently good or just (not necessarily!)  (Watters, 2014) …”

GW Libraries awards faculty adopting textbook alternatives – The GW Hatchet

“GW awarded grants to faculty who will replace their required, commercial course materials with free, open-source academic resources last week as part of a University-wide effort to lower the cost of textbooks.

GW Libraries launched the Adapting Course Materials for Equity Faculty Grant earlier this semester before awarding grants ranging from $250 to $1000 last week to eight professors who will switch to free, open-source materials, like online textbooks, for courses taught between fall 2022 and fall 2023. Officials said the adoption of free, open-source materials through the grant program will make courses more accessible and alleviate students’ financial burden….”

New study explores how open educational resources transform teaching & learning | Achieving the Dream

“Open educational resources (OER) are freely available, open-source learning materials that can be downloaded, edited, and shared to serve all students. Using OER in higher education makes college courses not only more affordable for students, but more personalized, dynamic, and responsive to their lived experiences.

Based on promising findings from the multiyear OER Degree Initiative, ATD and SRI Education have conducted a study to examine whether the use of OER can transform teaching and learning and how open content can enable more equitable, culturally responsive teaching practices.

Teaching and Learning with Open Educational Resources presents the findings from this study. It is the first report of its kind to look extensively at how instructors are using OER to advance equity in the classroom….”