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 Published on March 8, 2017 /  Written by and /  “Reaching out” by Nalini Prasanna; CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 /  0

In this episode (full transcript available), I spoke with Robin DeRosa about a broad issue that affects the way we do things in our classrooms; the way programs design their courses; the way institutions support their faculty and learners; and the way knowledge, education, and publication are funded. I’m talking about the issue of access — particularly open access — to course materials, course content, teaching tools, and even student work.

Ensuring that students have access to available networks of knowledge is just one piece of a very large and complex problem. We also need to ensure teachers have access to materials that help them teach. And everyone in the classroom has to have access to whatever tools are being used, whether that’s a #2 pencil that Betsy Devos seemed unable to find on her first day of work or a laptop that students could use to help them annotate or even publish online articles.

That’s what we’re exploring in today’s episode: What does it take to access an education? Learners must know how to navigate the system; how to self-advocate when needed; and how to distinguish among necessary processes, bureaucratic obstacles, and genuine injustices. Without these institutional social skills, navigating — and getting to — an education takes more effort than the learning itself.

Music used in this episode:

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