Writing Commons, Peer Production, and the Future of Open Textbooks


Writing Commons, Peer Production, and the Future of Open Textbooks

Joe Moxley, University of South Florida, US

Conference Theme: Innovation

Summary: Peer reviewed by distinguished academics, Writing Commons, http://writingcommons.org, fosters student writing and learning. Abstract: This presentation introduces the Open Education/ Open Courseware Community to Writing Commons, http://writingcommons.org, which is a creative learning space for students in courses that require college-level writing. Peer reviewed by distinguished academics (http://writingcommons.org/mission-statement/editorial-board-), Writing Commons is used by a variety of higher education students, including University of South Florida students enrolled in ENC 1101 or 1102. Presently, Writing Commons is being viewed by approximately 20,000 distinct IP addresses per year. Yet given we are in the quiet stage of our development, we believe the potential audience for Writing Commons is much larger, with 55,000 students enrolled in composition courses in the U.S. As the scope of the project expands, thanks to the miracle of peer production, Writing Commons could help hundreds of thousands of college students. The presentation will include:

a tour of Writing Commons, showcasing existing articles, explaining ways we hope to develop the project, outlining the peer-review process, and speculating about ways to develop a new kind of writing/learning space, one that is more interactive and multimodal a showcase of Web 2.0 features — the social media and blogging tools speculation about the future of open textbooks from a faculty member’s perspective the benefits to faculty of writing their own pedagogical materials and publishing them as an OER (open education resource) as opposed to giving up copyright to a traditional commercial, trade, or academic publishers or alternative publishers such as Flat World Knowledge or Connexions authoring tools, such as Drupla, Joomla, Wordpress, and SharePoint proposed changes to the U.S. academic reward system that need to be enacted to foster the development of commons-based OER resources