Impact of OER in the Netherlands

October 31, 2007

picture-2.pngJohn van der Baaren, Open Universiteit Nederland
Project targeted at people who have not already successfully attended higher education but they have finished some form of secondary education or a vocational training.
The project is designed to be flexible, open, time-independent and easily accessible. It is in Dutch. Students only have to invest time and effort, but they can choose to pay to be formally tested (so far few people have taken this opportunity). There are currently 16 courses online.
The research team is investigating the effects of this initiative. There was a general survey on the site and course-related surveys aimed either at people who had only looked at the introduction or at those who had studied most of the material. Around 800 forms have been submitted, around a fifth of them by people who have studied most of the material.
The site has attracted around 425,000 unique users, and the number of returning visitors is growing. Four out of five visited because they were interested in taking a free course. A third wanted to test their ability to take a university course.

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