The Open UniversitySkip to content

Research 2.0: How do we know about the users that do not tell us anything?

McAndrew, Patrick; Godwin, Stephen and Santos, Andreia (2009). Research 2.0: How do we know about the users that do not tell us anything? In: Vavoula, Giasemi; Pachler, Norbert and Kukulska-Hulme, Agnes eds. Researching Mobile Learning: Frameworks, Tools and Research Designs. Bern, Switzerland: Peter Lang, pp. 277–288.

Full text available as:
PDF (Accepted Manuscript) - Requires a PDF viewer such as GSview, Xpdf or Adobe Acrobat Reader
Download (294kB)
Google Scholar: Look up in Google Scholar


The OpenLearn initiative at the Open University <> offers free and open access to online material across a wide range of subjects. This material has been placed in on online environ- ment based on the Moodle learning environment together with additional tools for communicating with other users and creating knowledge maps. One of the design aims of the initiative was to be low barrier to access so all content is available without registration, though some tools and features will only work once registered. The result is that we are seeking to research a site that is publicly accessible and has a majority of users that do not iden- tify themselves, many of whom spend a short time on the site. As a further challenge the content itself is openly licensed using Creative Commons ( and can be taken and relocated on mirror servers, or accessed remotely through content feeds. The initiative has had to face this challenge and implemented a mixture of tracking, simplified surveys and the gathering of interesting stories. This approach has enabled us to spot interesting trends while remaining unsure about many of our users and their aims. The methods that we find we are using indicate a new style of research that can be related back to Web 2.0 as Research 2.0.

Item Type: Book Section
Copyright Holders: 2009 Peter Lang
ISBN: 3-03911-832-3, 978-3-03911-832-8
Academic Unit/School: Institute of Educational Technology (IET)
Research Group: Centre for Research in Education and Educational Technology (CREET)
Item ID: 23854
Depositing User: Patrick McAndrew
Date Deposited: 21 Nov 2010 19:43
Last Modified: 14 Jun 2020 04:18
Share this page:

Download history for this item

These details should be considered as only a guide to the number of downloads performed manually. Algorithmic methods have been applied in an attempt to remove automated downloads from the displayed statistics but no guarantee can be made as to the accuracy of the figures.

Actions (login may be required)

Policies | Disclaimer

© The Open University   contact the OU