Personal Learning Networks

Wordle of Communities of Practice Article
Wordle of Mark K. Smith article ‘Communities of Practice’, in the encyclopedia of informal education

If one of our goals as educators is to help our students engage effectively and meaningfully in global communities of practice, then we, as facilitators of learning experiences, must be able to do so as well. We began our semester together with a discussion about social networking and how a communities of practice framework would guide our work. In our final session together we’ll reflect on our experiences learning and teaching in communities of practice that extend beyond the time and space constraints of traditional course environments.

Based on your experiences thus far, how could and will sharing and collaborating in these online environments shape our and our students’ learning environments?

What will we all gain?

What do we stand to lose?

Where will you go from here?

I’d like to take this opportunity to thank you all for enriching my communities of practice and for helping me to grow as a learner and educator. I hope we continue to learn with and from each other!

Educational Trends

Graphic representation of 2010 Horizon Report key trends

A Wordle representation of the 2010 Horizon Report key trends

In this week’s session we continue to explore the ways in which the networked web enables previously unimagined communities of practice and how this impacts us as learners and educators. This past Saturday many of you had the opportunity to participate in the Classroom 2.0 Live! session with scores of educators from around the world as we learned about the upcoming Global Education Conference. In last week’s post you all raised provocative questions about the teacher/student role, how to assess and validate online resources and the extent to which this new environment may change the ways in which we relate to each other and our environs.

Given your experiences thus far, did Michael Wesch’s The Machine is Us/ing Us resonate with you and if so, how?

If it is true that our roles as educators and scholars are changing, with its attendant focus on new modes of scholarly authority and student engagement, what kinds of opportunities and challenges might these emerging technologies present to you as young scholars and educators?

During our face-to-face session I’m going to ask you to work in pairs to explore various open content resources and then give a short in-class presentation on your finds à la Educause’s 7 Things You Should Know About series, for example:

  • what it is
  • how it works
  • why it matters for teaching and learning

This will be in preparation for next week’s session in Elluminate where we continue our conversation about trends in higher education.

And here is our LearnCentral event on Open Content. At the bottom under ‘Other’ you’ll find the link to our recorded session.