A short survey for a course called “Why Open?”

I haven’t been blogging recently, and that’s partly because I moved from Melbourne, Australia (where I was on sabbatical for a year) back to Vancouver, BC a couple of weeks ago, and have been settling back in.

It’s also because I’m in a bit of a mad rush, helping to organize and facilitate a new course at the School of Open at Peer to Peer University (https://p2pu.org/en/schools/school-of-open/). The course is called “Why Open?”, and it’s still in draft form for the next couple of days, but will be open for registration on Monday, August 22.

I’m writing this post in order to have a place to send people on Twitter and other social media to ask if they will help out with a short survey on the meaning of “open,” the results of which we’ll use in the course in part B.1. here.

We’re looking for people who have various backgrounds, expertise, professions, to give us their ideas on what “openness” means to them. Please see the text of an email I’ve posted to a couple of lists, below!


Hi everyone:

I am one of the organizers/facilitators for a new course at the School of Open called “Why Open?”, which will start August 5. I’m writing to ask if you could fill out a very short survey (about 5 minutes) to help contribute some content to this course.

And/or, if you could forward this message to anyone you know whom you think would be willing to fill out the survey, we’d really appreciate it!


About the course and what we’re asking you to do

“Why Open?” is a 3-week long, facilitated course (meaning that participants and facilitators all go through it at the same time, rather than asynchronously) that is designed to help participants learn more about openness, recognize the benefits and challenges that can arise from opening up content or practices, and engage in some open practices themselves. It will run August 5-23, though participants will also complete a final project due around the end of August. You can see a draft of the course here: https://p2pu.org/en/courses/588/why-open/

In the first section of the course we ask participants to come with their own, preliminary understandings of what openness means. Then we will show them definitions by third parties and discuss the various meanings. We want to gather views from people with different expertise and backgrounds. One thing we will discuss is whether there are patterns in views of openness depending on profession or activity (e.g., do those in the sciences understand it differently than those in the technology fields, than those in arts or humanities, than those in business, etc.).

You can see the section in the draft course where these definitions will go, here: https://p2pu.org/en/courses/588/content/1143/



We have created a short survey (basically 2 questions, plus demographic info and request for links), and would love it if you could take a moment to fill it out. It should take you about five minutes.

The survey can be found here: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1rxV_sdlyejuQT2_iJ-b6A5MZT91o3_oYi2QM8FIoV5M/viewform

We would like your response by midnight on Sunday August 4 (N. America time) at the latest.


Thank you for considering this request, and we do hope you will take the time to contribute to this course!



Pete Forsyth, Christina Hendricks, Jeannette Lee, Simeon Oriko, Jane Park (organizers for Why Open? course)



  1. Great to see that the spirit of #etmooc is continuing through your latest project; best of luck to you and anyone lucky enough to be among your learners.

    1. Thank you, Paul! This is definitely a group effort, and I think it’s going to be a lot of fun, though quite a compressed 4-week schedule. It has to be, because some of us are going on to teach again in the Fall, including me!

  2. This looks like a worthwhile August project and I would love to be a part of it, but I am struck by the delicious irony that a course called “Why Open?” is already closed ;-). Perhaps it is obvious, but it really does beg the question “Why Closed?” I will try to dance around the edges of the course and carry the not-so-nice hope that someone decides to drop out early. Best of luck and I will try to get in earlier next time.

    1. Hi Terry:

      So true–delicious irony! It was closed because we had decided beforehand on a maximum number given what we thought would work well, for several reasons:

    2. 1. I have to enter the blog hub URLs by hand, and it’s the first time I’m doing it, and I wasn’t sure how long it would take me to find the RSS feeds for each blog url
    3. 2. We are having some discussions on the Disqus boards on each section of the course, and lots of people could mean those get too large to follow well
    4. I’ve asked the other facilitators what they think about opening registration back up, though…if we do so, I’ll post another reply here so you’ll know!

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