City Tech’s OpenLab (https://openlab.citytech.cuny.edu) is a bespoke open-source digital platform (using WordPress and BuddyPress) where students, faculty, and staff meet to learn, work, and share ideas. It is designed to support teaching and learning, and to provide opportunities for everyone at the commuter campus to connect and collaborate. Since its 2011 launch, the OpenLab has fostered innovation in its growing community, 23,000+ members strong. It has become an integral part of the academic, professional, and social life of the college, and a leader in open digital pedagogy and open-source technology in higher education.
Central to the platform’s success is its commitment to openness, which drives its community-focused ethos, diversity, and flexible infrastructure. Anyone at the college can join and create content, and unlike closed systems, the OpenLab is also available to those beyond the college to visit and interact with. By networking people and sites (courses, projects, clubs, and portfolios), the OpenLab fosters community and creativity, and puts easy-to-use tools in members’ hands, facilitating active learning, experimentation, and innovation.
The OpenLab allows faculty, students, staff, and alumni to connect and collaborate with colleagues across classrooms, departments, offices, clubs, and the college. Best practices shared easily within and across disciplines foster interdisciplinary approaches. One vibrant community, Open Pedagogy, brings together faculty and staff from around City Tech, CUNY, and the larger open education community to discuss teaching and learning in the open (https://openlab.citytech.cuny.edu/openpedagogyopenlab/). The OpenLab also partners with many initiatives across campus, including Open Educational Resources (OERs), First Year Learning Communities, General Education, and Student Life.
The OpenLab--via a grant-funded partnership with Commons in a Box--will be released publicly this year, so the global open education community will have the opportunity to create their own open communities based on the OpenLab.
New York City College of Technology, City University of New York (CUNY)
United States, Brooklyn, NY
The OpenLab at City Tech N/A