1 Reusable Learning Objects Reusable Learning Objects: Overview Reusable Learning Objects: Overview.
*Reusable Learning ObjectsReusable Learning Objects:Overview*Reusable Learning ObjectsWhat is SCORE?Sharable Content Object Repositories for Education (SCORE) is an initiative to help SREB states improve teaching and learning and achieve cost savings through the use of shared digital learning content and knowledge. *Reusable Learning ObjectsWhat do we know? online courses offered by 85% of US colleges in 200642 state departments of education courses in 2007institutions of higher education, states, school systems and teachers develop the same or similar contentmultiple institutions within a statethousands of institutions within the UStens of thousands of institutions worldwide*Reusable Learning ObjectsLearning object economics high-quality learning content is expensive development costs per course range$4,000 to > $100,000 > $1,000,000 for British Open University *Reusable Learning ObjectsThe economics are relentless.*Reusable Learning ObjectsWhat do we know? difficult to use whole courseseasier to share assets and smaller, common pieces of a course developed as reusable learning objects (RLOs) or sharable content objects (SCOs)*Reusable Learning ObjectsWhat do we know? searching for content is commonplacewell-indexed databases promote effective searchinglearning objects and SCOs can be stored in databases or repositories*Reusable Learning ObjectsLearning Object Repositories (LORs)provide easy access to a storehouse of digital resourcespromote sharing*Reusable Learning Objects Categories of LORSstoring and linking optionsrange of contentopen or require membership*Reusable Learning Objects TypeDescription1 stores content with limited linking2 stores no content, only links (metadata repository) 3 stores content and includes significant number of links *Reusable Learning Objects TypeDescription4 generic learning object repositories5 targeted learning object repositories6 full course repositories7 repositories requiring membership8 open archives of information objectsSLIDE: *Reusable Learning Objects*Reusable Learning ObjectsSCORE is an initiative to help SREB states improve teaching and learning achieve cost savings through shared digital learning content shared knowledge and experience*Reusable Learning Objects*Reusable Learning Objects*Reusable Learning Objects*Reusable Learning Objects Learning Objects & Assets*Reusable Learning Objects*Reusable Learning ObjectsSCORE learning objects include one or more educational objectives digital contentpractice activitiesassessment tools metadata*Reusable Learning ObjectsA SCORE asset can be used to build learning objectsclassified in a plan that allows information about the content to be stored and retrieved*ReusableLearning ObjectsReusableLearning ObjectsSLIDE: ***ReusableLearning ObjectsWisc-Online Approach ContactLewis Dot Structures of Covalent Compounds *Reusable Learning ObjectsUniversity of Nebraska Who Wants to be a Genetic Engineer?*Reusable Learning ObjectsNational Repository of Online Courses (NROC) High School Assessment Biology Activity 5: Structure and MovementComponents of the Cytoskeleton*Reusable Learning ObjectsHealthy MealsReusable Learning ObjectsSLIDE: ***Reusable Learning ObjectsCharacteristics of learning objects & assets smallself-containedreusableable to be aggregatedtagged with metadata*Reusable Learning ObjectsSCORE definition of a learning object contains objectives, content, practice and assessment is instructionally meaningfulis standards-basedaccessibilitySCORMSREB Quality Standards*Reusable Learning ObjectsLearning objects . . .are only as useful as the instructional design and implementation howevercan contribute to better learning *Reusable Learning ObjectsDiscussion:What do you think would be the biggest barriers to getting developers and instructors to adopt a policy of sharing and reuse?technologypresentationaudienceinstructional designrights and permissions*Reusable Learning Objects Benefits & Considerations*Reusable Learning ObjectsOrganizational benefits of using SCOs development and deployment of learning content quickly and efficientlycontent sharing between multiple learning management systemsreduction in content development and delivery costs*Reusable Learning ObjectsDeveloper benefits of using SCOs objects built once and reused infinitelyreuse of objects that others have developeddeployment of the same objects across various hardware and software platforms just-in-time approach to customizationcost savings*ReusableLearning ObjectsInstructor benefits of using SCOs speed and efficiency of instructional developmentexposure to new ideas and methods of presenting instructional contentcollaboration with other instructorsdifferentiated instruction*ReusableLearning ObjectsStudent benefits of using SCOs reviewing and reinforcing understanding of learned conceptslearning something newengaging in just-in-time learning*ReusableLearning ObjectsBenefits of using SCOs But the most important aspect of learning objects is that they take the control of e-learning activity out of the hands of the materials publishers and put it firmly back in the hands of learners and teachers.*ReusableLearning ObjectsDiscussion: How would your institution and stakeholders benefit from using SCOs?*ReusableLearning ObjectsReusable Learning Object Game*Reusable Learning ObjectsAdopting a Reusable Learning Object Strategy:Strategic Planning Overview*Reusable Learning ObjectsConsiderations in adopting an RLO strategy stakeholdersvalue-addsleaderscheerleaderspartnersmarketing*Reusable Learning ObjectsConsiderations in adopting an RLO strategy changes in institutional practices and policiesresource allocation needsimpact on business and development practices*Reusable Learning ObjectsConsiderations for implementing an RLO strategy stakeholder useexisting or future contentdecisions about content use and developmentinternal or external talent and resources for development*ReusableLearning Objects Considerations for implementing an RLOstrategycreation and ownershipstatic or dynamic RLOsformattingquality assurance*Reusable Learning ObjectsConsiderations for implementing an RLOstrategy business rulesmetadataevaluationtechnology*Reusable Learning ObjectsQuestions? Comments?SLIDE: *This presentation was developed by Liz Glowa and Michael Anderson and was edited by William Hawk, June Weis, and Lisa Johnson. Development of this resource was funded by the members of the SREB Sharable Content Object Repositories for Education (SCORE) initiative.In this presentation, we will set the stage for understanding how deploying a Reusable Learning Object (RLO) strategy supports teaching and learning in ways that are beneficial to instructors, students, developers and organizations. We will talk about the economics and benefits of using an RLO strategy, define and look at examples of assets and learning objects, and review some of the major questions that need to be addressed in implementing a Reusable Learning Object strategy.*In the SREB region, state organizations interested in sharable content objects, learning object repositories, and adopting a culture of reusing digital learning content have banded together with the support of SREB to form SCORE. Why? They are interested in improving teaching and learning, and in decreasing the costs of developing and using digital learning content.** The notes for this slide will not print on one page.Before launching directly into a discussion of sharable content objects, lets look at the current landscape of teaching and learning. Then we will look at how the use of an RLO strategy can be beneficial. Eighty-five percent of colleges offered online courses in 2006, with nearly 3.5 million college students taking at least one online course during the Fall 2006 term. Forty-two state departments of education offered online courses in 2007. The content for these courses is developed by individual instructors and teaching teams at the school, institutional, state and collaborative levels. Many times, the same content . . . or very similar content . . . is developed over and over again. Stephen Downes, a senior researcher at the Canadian Institute for Information Technology's e-Learning Research Group, is a leading voice in the areas of learning objects and metadata. He has developed an illustration of this for an introductory trigonometry course. He assumed that thousands of colleges and universities taught the sine wave function as part of their introductory trigonometry course. The properties of sine wave functions are constant, so each institutions description of sine wave functions is likely to be more or less the same. Therefore, there are thousands of similar descriptions of sine wave functions. Since eighty-five percent of colleges offer online courses, it is probable that we have thousands of digital content descriptions of sine wave functions. Downes postulated that the world does not need thousands of similar digital content descriptions of sine wave functions. Rather, what is needed is one or maybe a dozen, at most high-quality descriptions of sine wave functions available online that can be accessed by each of the thousands of educational institutions teaching the same material. *We know that high-quality educational content is expensive to produce. A plain Web page can cost hundreds of dollars. If you include graphics and animation, you can double the price. If you add interactive components, you could quadruple the price. It can cost anywhere from four thousand to more than a million dollars to develop an online course. The more interactive and multimedia intensive a course is, the greater the cost.Lets return to the illustration of the sine wave function. Stephen Downes says that a high-quality and fully interactive piece of learning material that teaches the sine wave function could be produced for, say, a thousand dollars. If a thousand institutions share this one item, the cost is a dollar per institution. But if each of a thousand institutions produces a similar item, then each institution must pay a thousand dollars, or the institutions, collectively, must pay a million dollars. For one lesson, in one course.*It makes no financial sense to spend millions of dollars producing multiple versions of similar learning objects when one to ten versions of the same object could be shared at a much lower cost per institution. Institutions that collaborate in development by sharing digital content, development projects or even development costs will have more resources to spend to develop higher-quality content.Institutions that share will have access to more quality resources than those institutions that only use materials that they produce. An institution that produces and uses only its own materials will have difficulty competing with institutions that share learning materials.** The notes for this slide will not print on one page.If it makes economic sense to reuse and share resources, why is this not done more often? It is a challenge to share at the whole course level, since it is difficult to reuse a whole course exactly as is. It is easier to use or re-purpose lessons, activities or assets from a course.Lets go back to the sine wave function example. It would be easier to insert an engaging, interactive learning object that teaches this concept into a sequence of instruction in trigonometry than to adopt a whole course in introductory trigonometry. This same sine wave function learning object could be used in an engineering course or in a high school Algebra II/trigonometry course. A student who needs to review the concept also could use the sine wave function learning object independently.When you are dealing with state standards for content areas at the K-12 level, it becomes even more difficult to share a whole course as is. When Maryland, Georgia and Louisiana agreed to share and redevelop a unit from an algebra course, the first step (after clearing the intellectual property hurdle) was to create a crosswalk of the three states standards to determine where there was convergence and where the states differed. The states decided to focus on the prerequisite skills needed to be successful in working with linear functions. This content was included in each states standards and was an area in which students need to be successful in order to progress in algebra. The next step was examining each states course content, development standards, and use of copyrighted materials. The development team was able to identify a number of reusable resources, but the team was not able to use any one states complete unit, or even a whole lesson. The team was able, however, to make use of the wealth of assets available. What would have helped the team was having a way to store, catalog and search for these assets in an online database that any member of the team could use through a Web interface.*We know that people are accustomed to searching for content, especially in libraries and on the Web. Sometimes these searches are not as specific as the user would like them to be and yield results that only partially meet user needs. How the digital materials are cataloged is of primary importance in being able to find relevant content. The use of well-indexed databases promotes more effective searching. Since learning objects, sharable content objects (SCOs) and assets are digital, they can be stored in databases or repositories, tagged with metadata, and retrieved through searches. What the algebra development team needed was to have the lessons and assets from each of the three courses in a searchable repository, commonly called a learning object repository. *A learning object repository (LOR) is a digital repository of learning objects with their associated metadata. An LOR provides teachers, curriculum developers and students with easy access to a storehouse of digital resources that can be used and shared within and across classrooms, schools and school systems, colleges and universities, and state agencies. *Today, there are thousands of LORs. Rory McGreal, of the University of Athabasca, researched types of LORs. He classified LORs into three primary categories: how a LOR stores or links to digital content the range of content, or whether the repositories are open or require membership.McGreals typology of LORs is included in the Basics section of the Learning Objects and Learning Objects Repository Workshop notebook.* * The notes for this slide will not print on one page.The three types of LORs described here are examples of storing and linking repositories. (See the notebook copy of A Typology of Learning Object Repositories by Rory McGreal for more information.) In a Type 1 repository, the objects and content are found there. You do not have to visit or link off to another site. Examples of these repositories include Wisc-Online, the National Repository of Online Courses (NROC), and Connexions. In a Type 2 repository, the metadata descriptions of the content and links to the objects are found. The objects themselves reside in another location. To view an object, you select the link to go to that site. These repositories can be considered portals that provide links to educational content provided by others. Examples of these repositories include Multimedia Educational Resource for Learning and Online Teaching (MERLOT), the Gateway to Educational Materials (GEM), and the Computing and Information Technology Interactive Digital Educational Library (CITIDEL). In a Type 3 repository, the content, the metadata, and the links to the object are included. These storing and linking repositories combine the functions of content hosts and portals. Examples include the ADRIADNE Foundation for the European Knowledge Pool), the Internet Mathematics Library: Math Forum @Drexel, and the National Science Digital Library (NSDL). ** The notes for this slide will not print on one page.Types 4, 5 and 6 are examples of the second category of LORs and demonstrate the range of content within LORs. In a Type 4 repository, a wide variety of object types covering various content areas can be found. Examples of these repositories include AT&Ts Blue Webn and MITs OpenCourseWare. In a Type 5 repository, a narrower range of object types can be found. These repositories are targeted learning object repositories. Most frequently, they are targeted by content area or age-range and educational level (such as early childhood or higher education). Examples of these repositories include: FLORE (French Learning Object Repository for Education), which includes only objects and content that focus on the French language The PhET (Physics Education and Technology repository of the University of Colorado), which includes objects that can be used for physics, mathematics and technology education BEN (BioscienceEdNet), which includes content that can be used in biosciences instruction. In a Type 6 repository, complete courses can be found. Examples of these repositories include Free-Ed Net and the Open Learning Initiative of Carnegie Mellon. There is increasing interest world-wide in sharing educational content. You can learn more about this movement at the OpenCourseWare Consortium site (http://www.ocwconsortium.org/). Types 7 and 8 are examples of the third category of LORs, which classifies LORs based on whether or not the LOR requires membership. In a Type 7 repository, membership is required to access the content. Many of these repositories do not charge for membership, but do require that you sign in so use statistics can be gathered. WISC-Online and BioSciEdNet are examples of no-cost membership LORs. Some repositories include some objects that are viewable by guests and other objects that are only viewable by members with licenses. The Orange Grove in Florida and LearnAlberta.ca are two examples of this type of LOR. Generally, the institutions providing the repository pay the license fees, rather than individuals. Some LORs have no guest access and are only open to subscribers, such as goENC.com (the Eisenhower National Clearinghouse). Individuals or institutions can pay the subscriber fees. In a Type 8 repository, archives of sharable content can be found. These repositories collect and make available digital resources, such as video, images and books. Examples of Type 8 repositories include the Open Video Project (sponsored by and developed at the Interaction Design Laboratory at the School of Information and Library Science, University of North Carolina Chapel Hill), Project Gutenberg (the first producer of free electronic books), and the Creative Commons Content Directories, which are maintained by organizations that provide services using Creative Commons licenses.*Note to Facilitator: This slide shows an example of a learning object repository (Desire2Learn) that supports the use of sub-repositories and metadata harvesting of external repositories using Open Archives Initiative (OAI) metadata searches. This is a screen shot of the basic search screen. You may want to switch out this image with an image of the institutions LOR and talk about its capabilities.SCOs can be downloaded, moved from one repository to another, or used from within a repository. User success in retrieving content from a repository is dependent upon having the content: stored in a place that is accessible tagged so the material can be found easily, or packaged in a way that the would-be-user can use it. Some repositories can be searched simultaneously using federated searches. The metadata of some repositories can be searched simultaneously using Open Archives Initiative (OAI) metadata searches. The use of standards in the development and packaging of the content, in the cataloging or tagging of the content, and in the selection of the technologies used to store the content is critical. *In the SREB region, state institutions interested in SCOs and LORs and in adopting a culture of reuse have banded together with the support of SREB to create and share best practices related to the creation of high-quality digital content and how to share it through agency repositories. SCORE has developed common standards for creating quality learning objects and assets, for cataloging or meta-tagging learning objects, and for dealing with the issues involved in adopting a reusable learning object strategy. Originally, one of the long-term goals of the initiative was to establish a global catalog server that would support federated searches of the LORs of the participating institutions. A global catalog would facilitate providing convenient access to digital learning content from all of the SREB state LORs to educators and learners across the region. With the increasing ability of LOR products either to harvest metadata from other LORs or to federate with each other, the SCORE planning committee is revisiting this discussion to determine whether this goal is still a priority.*Here is one concept of how a LOR might be used in a networked, multi-state environment. A user at an institution (e.g., a faculty member, teacher, student, developer, etc.) logs into the institutions LOR and contributes a piece of digital content. The decisions as to who may contribute to a LOR are part of the strategic planning that must occur prior to an institutions establishing the LOR itself. In this instance, a faculty member from Marshall University is making a contribution to the Marshall University LOR.*Then, the metadata about that object is sent to a global catalog such as the one that may be coordinated through SCORE.*The metadata about new objects is sent to the repositories networked by a global catalog. This means that the object itself is stored in the one institutions LOR, but the metadata is shared and available for searching in a global catalog. Metadata for objects should be shared only if the object itself is also sharable. This is one of the premises of SCORE. Another premise is that the object has undergone a quality review. Therefore, a global catalog only houses the metadata for vetted, sharable objects.*The content that can be stored in a LOR includes all forms of digital resources. For simplicitys sake, SCORE has developed inclusive definitions to categorize digital resources as either learning objects or assets. In this section, we will define both learning objects and assets, and we will look at examples of each.*There are numerous definitions for learning objects and opinions on how large or small a learning object should be. Most of the recent definitions include the concept that a learning object is made up of digital assets that are combined for educational purposes. Rory McGreal, in Learning Objects: A Practical Definition, defines a learning object as any reusable digital resource that is encapsulated in a lesson or assemblage of lessons grouped in units, modules, courses, and even programmes. This is a broad definition. SCORE members have narrowed this definition.Permission to use this image has been granted by Rory McGreal of the of the University of Athabasca.*A learning object, as defined by SCORE, includes digital content, practice activities, and assessment tools that are linked to one or more educational objectives. The learning object is also meta-tagged to reflect classification information that allows the content to be stored and retrieved. In its strategic planning, an institution should establish both what content will be developed as learning objects and the conditions under which learning objects should be uploaded to the LOR.Image generated by SREB.*The SCORE definition for an asset is broader. An asset is a digital object, such as an image, a practice exercise, or an assessment that can be used to build learning objects. An asset can be classified in a plan that allows information about the content, or the metadata, to be stored and retrieved. The conditions under which an asset should be uploaded to a learning object repository and tagged are something that an institution should define in strategic planning. Uploading and tagging an image that is only used once in a course may not be worth the resources needed to accomplish the task; however, uploading a video, an interactive exercise, or an image that has multiple uses or took a great deal of resources to develop may be worth the effort involved. We will look at some assets that are well-developed and worth including in a learning object repository (LOR). ** The notes for this slide will not print on one page.The Reusable Learning project, funded by the National Science Foundation, defined four levels of granularity of digital learning content, ranging from an asset to a learning component. All of these can be meta-tagged and stored in a repository. For the purposes of meta-tagging using the SCORE schema, SCORE classifies both learning components and learning objects as learning objects and treats both information objects and content assets as assets. The Reusable Learning project found that the more granular a resource is, the more ways it can be used or re-used. That having been said, it is important to note that the more granular a resource is, the more the instructor has to provide the learning context for the resource. This table represents the spectrum of granularity of digital learning content. A critical thing to consider in looking for and when developing resources is digital rights management. Is the object/asset you are looking for licensed so that you can use it? Will your institution allow others to use what you have developed, and, if so, under what conditions? In your notebook, there is a presentation by Marie Lasseter on Sharing Content with Creative Commons in the University System of Georgia LOR. This presentation and the links to the Creative Commons and the GNU General Public License in the SREB SCORE course shell provide good background information of the topic of copyright and licenses that support sharing.Learnativitys model is available at http://www.reusablelearning.org/about/Granularity.html. This image is from a presentation by Robby Robson, Designing and Managing for Reuse: The NSDL Reusable Learning Project email@example.com. 2005 Reusable Learning.This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.5 License http://www.eduworks.com/index.php/Publications/Reusable-Design-and-Learning-Objects.html. Retrieved November 3, 2008.*Take a moment to look at this image and think about three possible ways this asset could be used. Note to Facilitator: Individuals think and then share their ideas with the whole group. Possible uses include classes in art history, art appreciation, psychology or history. The asset might be used in math classes for discussions of the perspective in the drawing, as an English class writing prompt, or in art lessons concerning costume or dress, design or painting.Question: Who has to provide the learning context for this image? Answer: The instructor.*Note to Facilitator: Show the group these two Wisc-Online SCOs and ask whether each is an asset or a learning object. (The SCOs are available through the SCORE LOR and are used with the permission of Wisc-Online.)Answer: Approach Contact is an asset because it contains no practice/assessment.Answer: Lewis Dot Structures of Covalent Compounds is a learning object.It is important to know the difference between learning objects and assets because, when tagging an object, you may need to classify it as an asset or a learning object. Also, when searching, you may want to limit your search to one category or the other.Directions: To show these, visit http://srebscore.org/d2l/lor/viewer/viewInLor.d2l?ou=6605&loId=3054 and http://sreb-score.org/d2l/lor/viewer/viewInLor.d2l?ou=6605&loId=3039. There are hotlinks in this presentation, so you can select the titles and go directly there, or you can open the links prior to the presentation.*This asset was developed by the University of Nebraska and is available as a Web link (http://agbiosafety.unl.edu/education/whowants.htm). Permission for SREB SCORE use was granted by Leon Higley, Department of Entomology, University of Nebraska . Directions: To show this clip, visit http://agbiosafety.unl.edu/education/whowants.htm. There is a hotlink in this presentation, so you can select the image and go directly there, or you can open the link prior to the presentation.Permission was obtained to download the files and include this as a resource in an online high school biology course in Maryland. It is embedded in an activity on genetic engineering as the culminating exercise. Wrapping this additional instruction around the asset makes this asset part of a learning object. ** The notes for this slide will not print on one page.The NROC biology content was developed primarily for Advanced Placement (AP) Biology. By adapting the content, the Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) has been able to use it in a regular high school biology course. Often, the original NROC content assumed that the students had more background information and went beyond the Maryland state standards for a standard level online biology course. Therefore, MSDE adapted the multimedia resources by adding additional content to an HTML page, pulling only the content from the NROC Flash files that was needed, placing that content into a player, and embedding the player in the HTML page. Additional practice and assessment items were added as separate HTML pages. The use of the NROC multimedia saved MSDE a considerable amount of development time and money. Note to instructor: Components of the Cytoskeleton is available in the SCORE LOR under the title Cytoskeleton. Directions: To show this clip, visit http://sreb-score.org/d2l/lor/viewer/viewInLor.d2l?ou=6605&loId=44507 . There is a hotlink in this presentation, so you can select the image and go directly there, or you can open the link prior to the presentation.This item is used with the permission of NROC and MSDE. *This learning object was developed in the European Union. It was developed in English and Finnish for use in nursing programs and for the equivalent of home economics classes at the high school level. Directions: To show this clip, visit http://www.edu.fi/oppimateriaalit/healthy_meal/. There is a hotlink in this presentation, so you can select the image and go directly there, or you can open the link prior to the presentation.Permission for use granted by Senior Advisor Juho Helminen, Finnish National Board of Education.*If you are interested in learning more about learning objects, this Web site (http://ilearn.senecac.on.ca/lop/information/information.htm) uses a learning style approach to explore learning objects. The tutorials are based on ones learning preferences.Copyright Learning Objects Portal (http://ilearn.senecac.on.ca/lop). D. Nelson; B. Megens; K. Pitts; T Lundstrom. Permission for use granted by Kevin Pitts, Seneca College.*So, lets summarize the similarities and differences between assets and learning objects. Both assets and learning objects can be stored in a database or LOR and can be tagged for easy discovery. Learning objects usually comprise a smaller unit of learning than a course or unit of instruction; however, there are no formal size requirements. Assets are small pieces of digital content that do not have all of the components of a learning object. Each is self-contained and can be used independently of other learning objects or assets. Both are reusable. The same object (or asset) can be used in multiple contexts for multiple purposes. Remember the example of the Mona Lisa? Both can be grouped into larger collections of content to create more substantial units of learning. If placed in a learning object repository, both should be tagged with metadata that describes the content and allows the learning object or asset to be retrieved easily in a search.*SCORE has decided that a learning object needs to contain: objectives content to teach the objective, with practice for the end user, and a way of assessing end-user performance and providing the end user with feedback on his or her performance.These components help guarantee that a learning object is instructionally meaningful.Well-designed learning objects use documents, interactivity, graphics, simulations, video, sound and other media tools that go beyond static textbook presentations to engage students in real-world content. In addition, they are standards-based.In the SREB Publications section of your notebook, there are several documents related to learning objects and assets that are used in the Retrieval and Use module and the Publishing module. These documents treat metadata and the quality standards.*Learning objects are only as useful as the instructional design and implementation; however, easy access to learning objects in the hands of a good teacher, instructional designer or student can contribute to better learning.*Note to Facilitator: Ask participants to work in small groups to discuss what they think will be the biggest barriers to getting developers and instructors to adopt a policy of sharing and reuse. Allow 5-10 minutes for this discussion. Have groups share out by having each group share one item. Then move to the next group. If a group had the same item or items as a previous group, the group should identify that they had the same idea, but not elaborate on it. After each group has shared one item, ask for additional items not mentioned; then compare the list that the groups generated with the information on this slide.Research has shown that technology, presentation, audience, instructional design, and rights and permissions are the biggest barriers to the use of a Reusable Learning Object strategy.*There are a number of potential benefits of using RLOs and implementing a Reusable Learning Object strategy. Nevertheless, there are also many things to consider before making the institutional commitment to set up an LOR and starting widespread development of RLOs. In this section, we will discuss these potential benefits and identify many of the important considerations.*Content can be developed faster using and adapting learning objects and assets that already exist than it can be by building all content from the ground up.Adherence to standards in the development of objects allows use across multiple learning platforms, delivery systems and contexts without the need for redevelopment or reformatting.Reusing and sharing content can often lead to cost savings.*Content flexibility is key. If the object is formatted properly, it can be used in multiple contexts, courses and media without having to be rewritten, or with only a few modifications.Meta-tagging is critical to being able to discover learning objects and assets.If standards are employed in the development of the object, it can be used across multiple learning platforms, delivery systems and contexts without having to be rewritten.Learning objects and assets can be selected, assembled and rearranged to meet end-user needs.Reusing and sharing content can often lead to cost savings.*Once instructors learn how to find learning objects and assets, the use of these can decrease the amount of time it takes to prepare materials for their students. Moreover, if instructors develop content with reuse in mind, it will be easier for them to use the materials again themselves and to share content with colleagues.When searching for assets and learning objects, instructors are exposed to new ideas and new methods for presenting instructional content.Instructors who adopt the approach of using SCOs or reusable learning objects are more likely to collaborate with other instructors.Instructor can differentiate instruction more readily for students by using learning objects. An instructor may use a learning object to introduce or review concepts and material already presented or to provide students with more than one way to learn or practice a particular concept, often in a way that a student has not experienced previously. The instructor also may direct students to find and use an object from a previously vetted set of objects so that students have increased flexibility in their learning and additional choices of learning materials.*Students can use learning objects on their own as often as needed. In addition, students could search for learning objects of interest to them and know that they are searching a collection of vetted resources.*The most important benefit of learning objects is that they take the control of e-learning activity out of the hands of the materials publishers and put it firmly back into the hands of students and instructors.This quote from Bob Powells article Learning Objects Under the Spotlight is available at http://excellence.qia.org.uk/page.aspx?o=ferl.aclearn.resource.id5283.*Note to Facilitator: Ask the participants to work in small groups to discuss what they think would be the benefits to their institution and stakeholders of using SCOs. Allow 5-10 minutes for this discussion. Have groups share out by having each group share one item, and then move to the next group. If a group has the same item or items as a previous group, the group should identify that they had the same ideas, but not elaborate on it or them. After each group has shared one item, ask for additional items not mentioned. *Note to Facilitator: To play this game, visit http://www.fastrak-consulting.co.uk/tactix/features/objects/objects.htm. There is a hotlink in this presentation, so you can select the image and go directly there, or you can open the link prior to the presentation.*In the next section, we will look at some of the major aspects of strategic planning for a Reusable Learning Object strategy.*There are numerous questions that need to be answered when determining whether to adopt an RLO strategy, and then many more if the decision is made to move forward. Some of the major questions include: Who are the stakeholders? What is the value added by adopting an RLO strategy for each stakeholder group? Who are the leaders in the organization who can help with the project? Who are the cheerleaders who can speak enthusiastically about the project? Who are the possible partners? Who needs to be sold on the concept?*Additional major questions include: What changes in institutional practices will be required? Do current policies support sharing content? What are the institutions policies concerning intellectual property and copyright? Can this be done with existing resources, or is a budget initiative required? If existing resources are used, what work will be discontinued or cut back, or will a fee structure be set up for departments or end-users? What impact will this have on current business and development practices? Who within the organization will be affected by this, and how? How will acceptance be built in?There are many other high-level planning questions that need to be answered in determining whether to adopt an RLO strategy. These and the implementation questions are covered in the RLO Strategic Planning Workshop.*A few of the implementation questions include: How will stakeholders use the system? Who will be allowed to search? Who will be allowed to publish? Can end-users only link to the objects, or can they download them? Will all existing content be developed as learning objects, or will the new practice only apply to future content development or redevelopment? What content will be targeted? Who will make these decisions? On what basis will the decisions be made? Who will communicate the decisions and rationale and listen to the complaints (if there are any)? How will existing content be broken down to build RLOs? Will the learning objects be developed internally or externally, or through a combination of the two? *Questions for implementing an RLO strategy include: Who will create and own the RLOs? Will the RLOs be static or dynamic? Will you use format-free objects? Will you use templates to guide development? How will you determine and monitor quality?*Some remaining considerations in implementing an RLO strategy include: What business rules will you need? When and who can publish an object? Who can change an object? When do objects get retired? What are your quality standards, and who will review whether they are being applied? How much and what metadata will be required? Who will add the metadata? Who will check or validate it? How will you evaluate your success? What are your tool options? What development software will you use? Which LOR product will you procure or use, and will the LOR integrate with your LMS? What system architecture will you need? Will you host or outsource the hosting? What will be the impact on your bandwidth?And on and on. Just like it is with any major information technology project, good planning upfront is essential for a successful implementation.*Conclusion:The advantages of frequent use of reusable learning objects include the economics of scale, the saving of time for development, and the ultimate potential for positive impact on teaching and learning. Nevertheless, implementing an RLO strategy is a huge step that involves multiple players at the institutional level in collaborative efforts and consortia. Each of the considerations discussed bears deliberation and strategic thinking for effective and meaningful implementation. We hope that this overview of reusable learning objects and assets, learning object repositories, and the potential benefits and considerations for adopting and implementing an RLO strategy have stimulated your thinking and provided a framework for beginning or enhancing this process at your home institution.*