Open Pedagogy at Tacoma Community College

Kitakyushu University, Kitakyushu

Kitakyushu University, Kitakyushu (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Using Open Pedagogy to Reduce Social Learning Barriers for Students in the Global Discovery Program

Christie Fierro
Open Education Coordinator and Instructional Designer
Tacoma Community College


For the last 5 years, student groups have been coming over from the University of Kitakyushu (UKK) to spend 6 months studying at Tacoma Community College (TCC). They study at TCC for 2 quarters, earning 30 credits which transfer directly to the UKK. The partnership has been a success for both colleges. International students pay significantly more in tuition. International student families frequently feel sticker shock due to the cost of traditional textbook prices in the United States. The Communication Department transitioned to OER to support student success, then dove into Open Pedagogy to support social learning. The courses are half filled with visiting students from the Global Discovery Program and half filled with mostly native English speaking students. A service learning project that involved students in the design of the project and the selection of the reading materials led to surprisingly advanced levels of social interaction and learning. Participants will hear from faculty and students.

Getting rid of the “disposable assignments.” Talking to students about copyright helps them understand and respect copyright. She invites students to share their work using a Creative Commons license.

Taught a course with students from Japan. Challenges of working with students from other cultures. Using “open pedagogy” – group assignments and projects

Take the Other to Lunch” Tedtalk
The Danger of a Single Story” Tedtalk

Students interviewing one another “ask a student” and “ask a teacher” – they used a site called to support one another. They built and used the work that went before.

Added “open pedagogy” projects – examples. Groups projects are “open pedagogy” because the work lives outside of and beyond the classroom. They are also involved in community projects. Students create a rubric for the assignments.

They used music and images from Creative Commons.

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