Connected Learning and Open Networked Learning – a comparison

My research focuses on the personal learning networks of teachers, and how they experience professional learning through these networks. One of the defining aspects of the PLN is that it is driven strategically by the individual; the network creates an informal learning opportunity that is shaped around the thoughts, feelings and actions of the teacher, as they seek to create and remix knowledge through their connections with people and resources/information. Participating in the Open Networked Learning course (ONL162) is a slightly different, possibly more formal learning opportunity to the type of learning that occurs in a PLN. In this course, social...

Reflecting on a learning experience: Open Networked Learning 162

Earlier this year I had the privilege of completing the online open course, Open Networked Learning 2016, iteration 1 (ONL161). As I reflected on my learning way back in April, I thought that my connections with this particular learning experience had ended. However…I was contacted by the lovely Lotta Åbjörnsson, who works as an Educational developer at Lund University, and who is one of the course team of ONL, and she asked me if I wished to continue my journey with Open Networked Learning in the second iteration of 2016, this time as a co-facilitator of a PBL (problem based learning)...

Fake news, filter bubbles and frustration

It might just be me, but my Facebook, Twitter  and other social network streams have been chock full of articles about ‘fake news‘ since Trump became President elect of the United States. I”m not sure if everyone is being bombarded by this in the same way, but I am. I know that the topic has been in the news – particularly as many are claiming that Facebook played a powerful role in shaping the outcome of the US election; however I also am aware of the fact that everyone’s social media streams contain different information – according to who they...

Forget the Kardashians, I’m just trying to keep up with myself :)

Wow the time has flown and right now I am in the midst of preparing for my Confirmation and Articulation to PhD Seminar! I began this blog to chart my research journey, and sadly, I have recently been neglecting my blogging goals terribly! However,  I have not been sitting on my hands. Aside from preparing my Confirmation document and seminar (which I hope to share parts of here after the event later this month), I have also been working on a number of other jobs. I was thrilled to present a Webinar for Softlink, exploring Makerspaces ‘Beyond the Buzzword’, and recently...

Learning through Connections – in theory

So part of the reason I am keeping this blog is so I can share with you the research I am undertaking as part of my doctoral studies. Writing about the ‘stuff’ that I have been reading and thinking about for my studies in a blog post is great. I love it. Why? Because when I take the time to explain what I have learnt in my own words (and in a way that is less formal than my thesis requires) I often find that I develop a deeper understanding of it, and feel more confident about writing and talking...

Networks, Networking and Network Literacy – Part One

As I continue my research into how teachers experience learning through Personal Learning Networks (PLNs), I am spending a lot of time learning about networks, networking and network literacy. Before the internet became almost ubiquitous in the developed world, to many people the idea of networking may have meant dressing in business clothes, and attending some type of function,  making small talk and exchanging business cards. Conferences and functions such as this still occur, and certain industries still depend on having the right background and knowing the ‘right’ people. However, networking is rapidly changing, and having network literacy now means more than the...

Privacy – important even if you have nothing to hide

When I was nine I had a diary which had a lockable clip on it, which would only open with a special key. I thought it was awesome. My thoughts were completely private – as long as I kept the key secure, no one would be able to access what I had written. Simple times! For kids today, privacy is a much bigger issue – particularly if they have any interaction online (and really, that’s an awful lot of them). Recent news reports of a website hosting pornographic images of schoolgirls from a minimum of 70 Australian schools has brought the topic...

Reading in 2016 – digital vs print, the ultimate smackdown!

Ok so maybe I got a little carried away with the title of this blog post. This morning I read a great article by Naomi Baron entitled Do students lose depth in digital reading?. I was alerted to it by a Twitter post by a valued member of my PLN, @Julia_Boulton, and it struck a chord with me. Coming from a librarian and teaching background, and currently studying my Education Doctorate, I have often dealt with both physical and virtual texts – and personally, I like both equally, albeit for different purposes. I also feel that having an affinity and fluency...

Digital Content Curation: More Important Than Ever!

I’ve been a fan of digital content curation for a long time. I’ve blogged about it on many occasions; first waxing lyrical about Diigo way back in 2011, then celebrating the new year in 2013 by suggesting resolutions to use curation to manage content overload and then reflecting on curation as an art form last year. So what could I have left to write about, five years after my original post, and is digital content curation even relevant half way through 2016? I have been reflecting on this question for a few days now, and I have come to the...

Emojis – fad, or fabulous?

I have been meaning to write a blog post on the role of Emojis in communication and literacy for a while, and what better day to write it than on World Emoji Day. Yes, Emojis, those little pictures that animate texts and Facebook posts have an official day to celebrate them, and today is that day. Emojis have been around since the late 1990’s. Emerging from Japan, Wikipedia tells us the word emoji comes from Japanese e (絵, “picture”) + moji (文字, “character”). The apparent resemblance to the English words “emotion” and “emoticon” is just a coincidence. Lots of people...