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Monday, April 16, 2007

Personal Learning Environments and personal learning environments

There's been quite a bit of discussion going on around Personal Learning Environments (PLEs) and personal learning environments. We talked about this briefly during a session with Tony O'Driscoll, Brent Schelenker, and Steven Downes at the eLearningGuild. And then over beers.

Getting back, I've seen quite a few blog posts on the topic:

Stephen Downes - Personal Learning

I can talk about webs and networks and personal learnings and PLEs but there's a disconnect unless people see themselves as learners rather than teachers.
Stephen seems a bit worried in his post that people in the corporate world don't get the concept. They are used to command and control. There's some truth to that, but at the end of my What's New in eLearning session (on blogs, wikis, social bookmarking, rss readers, etc.) my final point was that we each needed to become better learners. That's exactly what Stephen, Tony O, and Brent said during our panel. When Stephen and I are agreeing on something ...

Note: Stephen and I don't agree on using the term Personal Learning Environment (PLE) with capitals to mean a put together system that integrates and supports your personal learning and a personal learning environment (lower case letters, no acronym) as the set of tools you use to help yourself learn (likely not very integrated). I believe that we all have a personal learning environment ... we just are not necessarily conscious of it.

Clive Shepherd - Personal learning environments

Also uses the lower case definition when he tells us...
My personalised learning environment includes many aspects of my knowledge network, including my browser favourites, my RSS feeds, my electronic documents and so on. But it's also non-digital and not easily captured in my browser. It includes my wife, friends and work colleagues, my tennis coach, my books, magazines and newspapers, the TV I watch, the films I see, the radio programmes that I listen to.
Michelle Martin - My personal learning environment

Does a fantastic job defining her personal learning environment. I love her approach on this and had suggested this as a Meme a little while ago and I hope others will post similar discussions of what their personal learning environment looks like.

Others that have chimed in: