Open educational practices in a Cultural Capability unit: Learning at the cultural interface

Sarah Lambert, Johanna Funk

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    Purpose: The authors respond to the special edition call for papers which explore the intersection between equity pedagogy and open educational practices (OEPs). The purpose of this study is to address the question “In what ways are educators ensuring equity in open educational practices (OEP)?” by investigating the use of OEPs in a first-year Cultural Capability unit at an Australian University. The Cultural Capability unit and this study are underpinned by concepts of border crossings (Aikenhead, 1996) across the cultural interface (Nakata, 2007) enabled by modelling and practicing collaborative power relations (Cummins, 2000). Design/methodology/approach: This study uses a qualitative content analysis method to analyse three textual data sets from students (interviews, writing samples and unit evaluation comments), for insights into students’ learning experiences and outcomes related to OEPs used in the unit. Findings: The OEPs used in the unit support working across multiple knowledge systems, disciplines and conceptual boundaries. The unit’s OEPs facilitate border crossings amongst multiple subcultures and share power to induce participation and give students language to discuss how they might cross borders in the wider cultural interfaces they are learning and working in. Originality/value: This study extends the theorising of OEP to introduce cultural border crossings and collaborative relations of power as examples of values-centred OEPs in the service of emancipatory learning in multi-cultural contexts. This study extends the practical applications of OEPs to making space for Indigenous and global students’ perspectives as valuable in the development of cultural capabilities.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)522-537
    Number of pages16
    JournalJournal for Multicultural Education
    Issue number5
    Publication statusPublished - 2 Nov 2022


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