School of Open Guidelines

Below are some questions to think about in creating a School of Open course. 


What course are you interested in creating as part of the School of Open? 

When you think about creating a course, ask yourself, "What do I want to help people DO?" versus "What do I think people should know or learn?"   For example, I want to help:



How can open content, tools, or processes help people do what they do better?

Open practices include using the content, tools and processes shared with us, enabling others to use, share and adapt what we create, and supporting   transparency in our content, tools and processes. If a course involves   teaching or learning about any of these practices, either broadly or in  a  particular field, then it probably fits in the School of Open. 


Is there a specific aspect or mechanism that keeps people from taking advantage of open stuff?

Think  about the key obstacles that discourage someone from learning about   openness, applying open tools, or sharing their work openly. For   example, what might cast doubt into a musician’s mind when it comes to   using openly licensed material? Why might a graphics designer refrain   from sharing her/his works openly? Are there good reasons for not going   fully open or are certain misconceptions playing a role?


Getting started

  1. Go to and get familiar with the other courses to see how yours might be structured.
  2. Join the Discussion and introduce yourself and your field of “open” interest: . See if others are interested in building it as well. Someone might already be developing a similar course.
  3. Register for a P2PU account at
  4. Start creating! You can create directly on the P2PU platform or use for planning and collaborative editing. When you’re at a point that’s ready for feedback, follow the steps of our Community Review Process.


Course creation support

Take a course on how to make a course! 

The first step to creating a successful P2PU course is to identify the skills your peers will learn. In the School of Open context, the skill involves some aspect of openness, such as finding open content, sharing media, CC licensing, remixing music, or editing Wikipedia. Learn how to make a course in half an hour:

How do I facilitate a P2PU course? 

If you are planning to facilitate your course with a start and end date, visit for resources to help you in the development and  running of your course.


Below are some additional resources and exercises that others have found helpful for developing their courses.


Who are you trying to help? Think about the course from the learner’s standpoint. 

Who will be taking the course? What real world questions is s/he likely to  ask? What needs is s/he likely to have and barriers s/he is likely to run into? 


Create a user scenario:


What can you reuse and build on?

Do openly licensed resources already exist that explain/teach any of  this? Are people already teaching or learning about related topics elsewhere that you can tap to collectively build the course?


Document your thinking behind the course and learning activities

The learner may ask, why am I doing this? What am I learning? Be transparent about the learning objectives.


FEEDBACK on the Guidelines above