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Murilo Matos Mendonça


Murilo Matos Mendonça

Project Title

Analysis of the collaborative experience of UnisulVirtual and The Open University

Project Summary

This research project set out to analyse the collaborative experience of UnisulVirtual and The Open University, involving two interconnected projects run by the Open University, namely OpenLearn and OLnet. The aim was to look into the process of mentoring, implementation and cultural adaptation of OER which has been underway and going through different stages at UnisulVirtual ever since a formal collaboration was established in March 2008.

Dates visited OU UK

14 Feb to 13 May 2011


UnisulVirtual, Universidade do Sul de Santa Catarina, Brazil

Biographic information

Murilo Matos Mendonça works for Unisul (University of Southern Santa Catarina), a university that delivers both distance and face-to-face education. In 2010 he left face to face education and concentrated only in distance education for UnisulVirtual.  In this organisation he has three different functions: a teacher of English as a second language, their Open Educational Resources (OER) co-ordinator, and their International Relations Manager. The Fellowship was his first experience of living for an extended period in an English-speaking country, despite the fact that he’s been a teacher of English as a foreign language for more than twenty years and has excellent English.

Murilo was elected as an Institutional Board Member of MIT´s OCWC (OpenCourseWare Consortium), USA. ( during the OCWC Global 2011 Conference, 4-6 May, 2011, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA.

Main Output

The OLnet Fellowship allowed me to have a deeper understanding of OER by showing me in practice what it is to be open to people, places, methods and ideas.

Together with Prof. Patrick McAndrew and Andreia Inamorato dos Santos and with their help, I wrote an article titled: "Freeing up access to learning: the role for open educational resources", just published.


  • Co-authoring of the article titled “Freeing up Access to Learning: the Role of Open Educational Resources” for the GUIDE (Global Universities in Distance Education) publication on Distance Education quality and guidelines launched during the GUIDE International Conference 2011, 18 – 19 November 2011, Rome, Italy.
  • Oral presentation at OER11 titled “Towards Crossing over the Digital Divide: the use of OER to promote digital literacy”. 11 - 13 May 2001, Manchester, UK (abstract at:

Activities during visit

  • SCORE (Support Centre for Open Resources in Education) Short-Term Fellowship Residential Course (24 February 2011) – Lectures: 1. “Reflection on the UK OER Programme”, by David Kernohan; 2. “Online Learning Task-Force Report: What does it mean for OER and inter-institution collaboration?”, by Johnathan Darby. 
  • SCORE (Support Centre for Open Resources in Education) Conference “Does it Make a Difference? The impact of repositories and OER on teaching and learning” (23 March 2011): 1. Plenary Session – “Open Oxford – assessing impact beyond the institution”, by David White and Melissa Highton, University of Oxford; Lectures – 2. “OER use: whom what, where, how and most of all WHY?, by Chris Pegler, IET and ORIOLE (Open Resources: Impact on Learners and Educators); 3. The Humbox: a new concept of openness in OER UK”, by Antonio Martinez-Arboleda, Senior Teaching Fellow in Spanish, University of Leeds; 4. The TOETOE Project”, by Alannah Fitzgerald, English Language Centre, University of Durham and SCORE Fellow; 5. “The Impact on Learning of iTunes U Open Educational Resources”, by Terese Bird, SCORE Fellow and Learning Technologist, University of Leicester; 6. LORO and OER repository for language teachers: Does it make a difference?”, by Anna Comas-Quinn, Lecturer in Spanish and SCORE Fellow, The Open University; Plenary Session – 7. “Understanding the role of OER in open educational practices”, by Helen Beetham, JISC Consultant. 
  • Annual Fair “Learn About” of the Institute of Educational Technology – IET, at the Open University UK (30 March 2011): worked at the OER stand, giving information on the OLnet Project and the OER collaboration between UnisulVirtual and the Open University.
  • eSTEeM Brazil Breakfast (30 March 2011): discussão do projeto round of discussions promoted by the eSTEeM Project with Brazilians at the OU in order to identify potential international partnership opportunities to offer post-graduate programmes in Brazil in the STEM area (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics).
  • Invited by Tallinn University of Technology to give a presentation on OER during Estonia e-Learning Conference. The presentation was titled Challenges and Idiosyncrasies of e-Learning in Brazil: the case of UnisulVirtual (which included the UnisulVirtual-OU collaboration in OER) 6 – 8 April 2011, Tartu, Estonia.
  • SCORE (Support Centre for Open Resources in Education) Short-Term Fellowship Residential Course (10 – 15 April 2011): Crash course held by the BBC team at the OU – 1. “Principles of Multiplatform Broadcasting”; 2. “Scripting and Storyboarding”; 3. “Interviewing Techniques”.
  • eSTEeM International Colloquium: International Perspectives on the Development of Distance Learning (18 – 21 April 2011): 1. Visit to an Open University Regional Centre in London; 2. Workshop “Quality Assurance in Distance Education”, by Dr. Keith Williams, eSTEeM Director, The Open University; 3. Workshop “Assessment in Distance Learning”, by Prof Peter Taylor, Faculty of Science, The Open University; 4. Lecture “Open Educational Resources”, by Prof Andy Lane, Faculty of Maths, Computing and Technology, The Open University.


Kozinska, K (2011), 'Murilo Mendonca: OLnet fellowship observations, reflections, goals, impressions',, 21 July [online], (Accessed 13 December 2011)

Kozinska, K (2011), Murilo Mendonca part II: more on collaboration with the OU, UK; OpenLearn use by UNISU VIRTUAL',, 17 August [online], (Accessed 13 December 2011)

Santos, A; McAndrew, P and Mendonça, M (2010). Cultural imperialism or multicultural mix? Promoting OER reuse through collaboration. In: Open Educational Resources 2010 (OER10), 22-24 Mar 2010, Cambridge, United Kingdom. Available to download from:

Mendonça, Murilo and Santos, Andreia (2010). Unlocking Doors: the leading role of HEIs in creating an OER culture. In: GUIDE Association Workshop, April 2010, Rome, Italy. Details:

Mendonça, M M, McAndrew, P, Santos, A I (2011), Freeing up access to learning: the role for open educational resources, in Baldazzi, A., Ricci, L., Baroz, V.V. (eds) E-learning quality assurance: a multi-perspective approach, Gangemi Editore, Roma, pp. 121-138.

Update Since Fellowship

I have been planning on implementing a new UnisulVirtual OER webpage with more courses than what we have today in our collaborations area at LabSpace, and at UnisulVirtual we are trying to devise a way to validate self-taught knowledge acquired through OER. Also, UnisulVirtual was invited to participate in the Colearn Project, but so far we have not given any contributions to this project because we will need to allocate more personnel to work with OER.