OpenCourseWare, global access and the right to education: real access or marketing ploy?

Huijser, Henk and Bedford, Tas and Bull, David (2008) OpenCourseWare, global access and the right to education: real access or marketing ploy? International Review of Research in Open and Distance Learning, 9 (1). pp. 1-13.

Text (Published Version)
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial No Derivatives.

Download (93kB)


This paper explores the potential opportunities that OpenCourseWare (OCW) offers in providing wider access to tertiary education, based on the ideal of 'the right to education'. It first discusses the wider implications of OCW, and its underlying philosophy, before using a case study of a tertiary preparation program (TPP) at the University of Southern Queensland (USQ) to draw out the issues involved in offering a program that is created in a particular national and social context on a global scale. This paper draws specific attention to the digital divide, its effects in national and global contexts, and the particular obstacles this presents with regards to OCW. This paper argues that OCW provides many opportunities, both in terms of access to education and in terms of student recruitment and marketing for universities. To take full advantage of those opportunities, however, requires a concerted effort on the part of tertiary education institutions, and it requires a vision that is fundamentally informed by, and committed to, the principle of 'the right to education'.

Statistics for USQ ePrint 3948
Statistics for this ePrint Item
Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Deposited in accordance with Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 License. 'Copyright Notice: The copyright of all content published in IRRODL is retained by the author's. However, all IRRODL content is licensed under a Creative Common's license with the following conditions: Content may be re-used, reprinted or translated as long as attribution is made to the author(s) and to IRRODL. Re-use and republication is permitted only for non-commercial purposes. Derivative Works are NOT allowed. You may not alter, transform, or add additional content to this work. For additional details and examples of allowed use under IRRODL's Creative Commons license, visit:'
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Learning and Teaching Support Unit
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Learning and Teaching Support Unit
Date Deposited: 07 Mar 2008 05:16
Last Modified: 05 Mar 2015 23:42
Uncontrolled Keywords: OpenCourseWare (OCW); right to education; digital divide; tertiary preparation programs
Fields of Research (2008): 08 Information and Computing Sciences > 0806 Information Systems > 080612 Interorganisational Information Systems and Web Services
13 Education > 1301 Education Systems > 130103 Higher Education
22 Philosophy and Religious Studies > 2201 Applied Ethics > 220104 Human Rights and Justice Issues
Fields of Research (2020): 46 INFORMATION AND COMPUTING SCIENCES > 4605 Data management and data science > 460507 Information extraction and fusion
39 EDUCATION > 3903 Education systems > 390303 Higher education
50 PHILOSOPHY AND RELIGIOUS STUDIES > 5001 Applied ethics > 500104 Human rights and justice issues (excl. law)
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): C Society > 93 Education and Training > 9399 Other Education and Training > 939903 Equity and Access to Education

Actions (login required)

View Item Archive Repository Staff Only