Wednesday, 18 August 2010

My PLE (Revisited)

It's about that time of year again where I take an inventory of my current Personal & Professional Learning Environments (PLE), in other words the tools I use to further my learning, either formal or informal.
Since I successfully completed my M.Ed., the environment will be somewhat different than what it was while I was studying. The point of this excercise is to reflect on what has changed in my PLE and why as well as any overall impressions.

Below, you will find a graphic representation of the PLE I used about a year ago (click the image to make it larger).

Now, contrast that PLE with the one I am currently using:

While many of the tools remain, there have been some changes. For example, it looks as though, on balance, there has been a shift towards websites which I consider authorieties in the field of education and Professional Development. Content creation sites such as wikispaces still appear in the latest version. It seems also that the shift to mobile technologies is well on its way as I find myself increasingly doing work on my phone. Web 2.0 technologies are also well represented, but less than originally? I think the big difference in this assessment is the increase in mlearning, professional development and possibly a rationalisation of Web 2.0 technologies.

Why do I think these changes have happened? The first thing that struck me was, what appeared to be the decline in the number of Web 2.0 technologies or was it merely rationalisation? Not all tools which I've dropped are Web 2.0, or there was duplication of tools. For example, Freemind, a mind mapping program which is a download, has essentially been overtaken by which is online and a Web 2.0 technology. There has definately been an increase in mobile computing because of the fact I am more often not able to access a desktop or laptop computer. My smartphone is, where I need it, when I need it. There has also been an increase in access to professional development sites such as The Educator's PLN (NING) because I am attempting to keep pace with pedagogical ideas and the EdTech community as my community of practice. Finally, although I have dropped some tools, I think really it was a rationalisation of tools which essentially did the same, or nearly the same, job.

Another tool conspicuous by its absence is Evernote. I have found that I am increasingly using the Active Notes tool on my NOKIA. So, no need to use Evernote which I would have to download and install (if they have a S60 version - I don't know, I didn't bother to check). Moreover, I found that I used Evernote on my PC as a clipping service. But I also had Wired Marker for that and Jing for screen captures, so Evernote, for me, was redundant.

The next one 'out' was "". This was a move to efficiency really. I was till using and found that they were essentially duplicated tools, so I stayed with - still a Web 2.0 tool!

The second area of change was the increased use of mobile technologies. This change has occurred rather quickly as I am increasingly using the tools on my smartphone to get everday in-class tasks done such as evidence collecting and scheduling. Nevertheless, the move is still limited as a result of the wifi access limitations within school and the limitations on mobile use.

And that is my review of my PLE. What does your PLE look like? Are you using tools which I don't? If so, how do they help you? Have you ditched any tools recently?

Photo Credit: "Keyboard" by Alireza-Ghabraei via


Post a Comment