The New Social Learning Blog

Does a learning community or community of practice need roles to function well? In the event you officially assign these functions to the people or is it best if people spontaneously fullfil certain functions? What about the self-organising power of areas? Sibrenne Wagenaar en Joitske Hulsebosch) about roles in networked learning. We thought it would be nice to share some of our thinking in this blogpost. Assignments aren’t explicitly assigned and named because it is a starting and spontaneous process.

Since we’ve taken the effort to ask people we feel more responsible for the intricacies of the network, but others also take initiatives and propose activities. We informally talk regularly with members, take initiative to convene a meeting f2f, start an online brainstorming, make sure invitations are for sale to online webinars.

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But essentially anyone can take the initiative to start operations and that happens. And when do formal functions get in the way of spontaneous self-organisation? A more formal roles gives you a certain focus and responsibility that makes it clear how you (are supposed to) donate to a network. The artwork in network learning is often this is combined with other existing work duties and creating a formalised role can help to ensure the learning community doesn’t get ‘off the radar’.

It is essential that the contents of the network relevant to you and in line with other work you are doing to avoid the network jobs from falling from the list, but having an explicit role can also contribute certainly. What roles is it possible to distinguish? There are many different classifications of assignments in learning networks. The Ruud de Moor Centrum has developed a great networked learning toolkit and developed six important assignments, spread over an exterior and inner concentrate. You will find two more sources that we like to give out: Eric Davidov’s roles and roles described by Michael Fontaine.

3. Ambassador is advocating and supporting the necessity for the learning network1. Consumer: the individual who looks for and uses content, information, and social connections. 2. Creator: The person who creates, shares, improves, and discusses content and information. 3. Connector: The person who helps others to find the content, information, and people they seek or need.

4. Carrier: The person who helps creators to transmit and promote their content and information to others. 5. Caretaker: The person who manages the learning community. We offer these three categories never to compare them, but showing the variety in considering and determining jobs rather. This isn’t the ‘one right list’ that can make your learning network perfect.

You may develop your own list of functions for your network, influenced by these lists. It really is difficult to compare them because they have been explained from different perspectives. The set of Ruud de Moor Centre is dependant on multiple learning systems in something in which roles are needed exterior support. Eric Davidov, predicated on a literature summary, has compiled the most typical roles in a Community of Practice.

Fontaine has viewed functions and their development in neighborhoods in several large organizations. In his view, certain assignments (eg sponsor, innovator, subject material experts) are essential in the first stages of a significant network, and over time find it obvious shifts rather. Fascinating to read his article about it!

Formal or casual roles? There is a difference between a spontaneous role (eg. It might be beneficial to formalise certain jobs to create clearness and to ensure that the responsibilities are anchored someplace in the network. Playing with functions might help the development of a network. This is true for a coordinator roles, but for less obvious roles like inspirator or monitor also.