I have a question that I am hoping that someone here can answer. If I create a course on Blackboard, do I retain the intellectual property for that course or does it belong to the hosting institution? Of course, I am assuming that the answer does not vary by institution and/or state (I'm in NY).
If the answer is the institution, though, does anybody have any suggestions for archiving the course in such a way that I can at least "keep a copy"?
Thanks in advance for your feedback!
Unfortunately it varies by institution. Every institution should have an intellectual property policy. Often if they paid you anything to develop it, they own it. But with Blackboard, you can archive a copy of the course (depending on your level of rights).
Thanks, Patrick. I asked the administration at my school and it turns out we are free to take and do what we wish with our courses on BB. That's a relief!
I think the question is if the work was created using the institution's resources and what are the institution's policies. It could also be part of a bargaining agreement.
A good option is to create the coursework locally with your own resources and then import it into the LMS. Blackboard does allow you to archive though.
This research might help: http://htmlscript.auburn.edu/outreach/dl/pdfs/Intellectual_Property_and_Online_Courses.pdf
Nice resource. They only looked at Research Institutions it appears. It would be interesting to see how for-profit and community colleges differ as well as how polices have changed since 2005.
Thanks for this wonderful resource, Matt. As I mentioned to Patrick (above), I discovered that my college gives faculty full rights over their courses, but I was interested to discover (and frankly quite surprised, too) that some institutions don't. In a school like mine where there is no real distance program to speak of (just a few odd courses here and there and the LMS is use mainly to facilitate face-to-face classes), limitations of faculty rights would serve as a deterrant from designing hybrid or fully online courses using the LMS (which I am doing next semester!). This is an important issue to keep in mind, obviously, and for folks in teacher education like me, where our course design is very much tied with our research, it seems like quite a sticky wicket.
I was talking with my wife, who has been a college administrator for quite a few years. She said this is usually covered in many faculty collective bargaining agreements.
If you find that you have rights to use the course content that you created, then it is definitely possible to archive. I am assuming that you are using Blackboard Learn. If so, then you can use the Export/Archive Course tool (under Course Management>Control Panel>Packages and Utilities). Make sure to select Export, since Archive creates a backup within the course, which wouldn't help you at all. If you do not have this option within that directory, then the ability to archive an individual course has probably been turned off for your system role by the LMS admin--at my institution, we've modified our instructor role and this is one function we've chosen not to give instructors. At that point, you would need to contact them for an archived copy. Let me know if you have any specific questions about the process. Hope that helps.
Robert, Thanks for detailing this process. This is precisely the type of information I needed!
Blackboard has a tutorial for it out on their site. I didn't watch all of it but it should at least get you started. I don't know if institutions can lock down courses so they can't be archived.
Most of the institutions I have worked for (and friends in business), whatever you do on their time with their resources or for them becomes theirs. Much like patent work. If you develop a product for a company you work for, they own the patent not you. That's why the person who invented Post-It(r) notes doesn't receive royalties, iirc.
The exception would be something like if I had written a textbook for a publisher. At my current school I could work on those resources as the district was benefitting.
One more how to from UNC
Thanks, Aaron. Those tutorials will be helpful! As I say to Matt above, I understand the principle of "what you do on their time, with their resources..." but then I am talking about MY research. For those of us who aren't officially 9-5 and for whom course design is tied to our scholarship, this seems to be a complicated and fraught issue and potentially a deterrant to using LMSs. Partially for these reasons (and because my home institution has a lenient policy about such matters), till now I have relied on free Web 2.0 platforms to faciltate my classroom learning communities and have been very reluctant to go the LMS route. Frankly, my very positive distance ed experience at BSU has prompted me to rethink this stance, and though I am a big proponent of using the authenticity of Web 2.0 forums like public blogs and Nings for certain types of classroom discourse, I also see renewed value (and potential) of using LMS for appropriate learning situations (e.g., some discussions are better had in the "privacy" of the closed LMS classroom space).
In any event, I am very glad to have put this question "out there": in addition to learning a lot about this issue, as a new distance student at BSU, it's also given me a good sense of my colleagues' wealth of expertise.
Thanks again, everyone, for your generous responses!