A PLN (personal learning network) is a personalised, virtual professional network of fellow learners, educators and resources designed to develop knowledge through shared connections.

A PLN:

  • expands on existing, pre-internet professional networks which were built through, for example, universities, journals and conferences. These networks still work very well but require physical presence, physical resources and the learner often has very little control of or restricted access to these networks.
  • allows learners and educators complete personalisation and control of their professional network.
  • is developed primarily through immediate online interaction through methods such as blogging, social media and MOOC participation. It is dynamic and can be constantly adapted as much as time and energy allows.
  • is based on the theory of connectivism and it is important to share and contribute to the network alongside gathering and absorbing the content that exists there. By sharing and contributing, learners and educators will see their network and reputation as an online contributor grow as a result.

My PLN diagram can be found below (not complete but a work in progress):

Personal learning network diagram

(Block 2 Activities 15 & 16)

Bibliography

Catapano, J. [n.d.], What is a PLN? Why Do I Need One?, TeachHUB [Online]. Available at: http://www.teachhub.com/what-pln-why-do-i-need-one (Accessed 12 April 2016)

Morrison, D. (2013), How to Create a Robust and Meaningful Personal Learning Network [PLN], Online Learning Insights [Online]. Available at: https://onlinelearninginsights.wordpress.com/2013/01/22/how-to-create-a-robust-and-meaningful-personal-learning-network-pln/ (Accessed 13 April 2016)

Leslie, S. (2008), PLE Diagrams, Edtechpost [Online]. Available at: https://edtechpost.wikispaces.com/PLE+Diagrams#arena (Accessed 13 April 2016)

Reflection

This was a useful reflective activity to really think about my networks, especially my professional networks. I started up a work-related Twitter account on the back of this activity which I feel motivated to keep up to date but I don’t want it to be too dry. I like to keep work and social life separate but sometimes I need to fit a window on the wall between both.

 

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