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In this paper we consider the position of the VLE in the context of the open education movement. This paper gathers data from the #VLEIreland survey in order to explore further whether open education was a concern of the academics involved, and if so, how it shaped their use of the local VLE. We will explore the nature of open education and open educational resources (OER), and whether there are interactions between these resources and the VLE. Open educational resources are materials shared online for educators to use and adapt, including full courses, modules, textbooks, and assets such as video clips, images or teaching methods. Data from our staff survey indicates a range of responses to the sharing and use of OERs and a spectrum of understanding (or lack of understanding) of copyright issues. We explore these findings and discuss their implications for OER in the future, and suggest that the ideals of “openness” are challenged by institutional VLEs and other mechanisms for resource sharing in higher education.
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