Alternative accreditation – first ideas and upcoming workshop in Boston 2010

by P

So much has happened, that it made sense to jot down a few notes on my thinking on alternative accreditation (I should really say “our” as most of the thinking has been done in collaboration with others, including Christine Geith and Stian Haklev, but I can’t speak on their behalf). I am interested in this topic as a researcher, but also as an entrepreneur who wants to enable self-learners to attain real (economic) benefit from informal learning in places like Peer 2 Peer University. For me this is the ultimate hacking education challenge.

I recently participated in the Berkman Center Free Culture Research workshop, which brought together an interesting group of free culture researchers and activists at the place where — one could argue — it all started. We were asked to prepare short essays on our key interests for free culture research, and I decided to focus on peer assessment and accreditation. Although my interest is education and not free culture per se, the mechanisms by which peers evaluate each others work, and collaboratively improve on it, lie at the heart of commons-based peer production, and are hence relevant to the broader free culture movement as well. You can download the essay from the Berkman wiki.

Together with Chris, Stian, and Joel Thierstein I wrote a longer piece on “Peer-To-Peer Recognition of Learning in Open Education“ for the International Review on Research of Open Distance Learning (IRRODL).

The two papers provide a first impression of our thinking on accreditation in the open social education world. With support from the Shuttleworth Foundation, we will be organizing a P2PU research sandpit (in the Boston area, possibly in May 2010) for a few people who want to design what this open accreditation world could look like – and then build it. If you are working on similar ideas, or know someone who is, we’d love to hear form you. The idea is to start talking in a slightly larger group now, and then meet in Boston with the ones that want to implement what we come up with.

I’d like to close by saying -> Q3DFN58YF93S <- yes, I only now signed up for Technorati.