This week, my e-collaboration class takes up the subject of blogging, and I’m delighted that my own blogging and blog-reading practices can offer timely concrete examples of blogging’s benefits.
I was surprised and excited to see that my blog post last week garnered an unusual amount of attention. I posted a new version of my learning environment components list, and received comments and feedback (on and off line) that prompted me to make additional changes. I thank especially Stephen Downes and Harold Jarche for their comments.
In reading blogs last week, I was also re-introduced to Jane Hart’s thinking about changing roles of the learning professional, and since my upcoming presentations are to learning professionals about our emerging curating role, Jane’s perspective provided new dimensions for me to consider. The newest graphic on learning components is attached at the end of this post, and I continue to welcome comments on it.
The experiences of the week were really an object lesson in the power of blogging. Working solo in my office in Delaware, I can be connected to well-known thinkers and hard-working professionals – and we can share differing perspectives, offer helpful critique, vent our concerns, build on each other’s ideas, discover what’s new, identify important trends, and so much more. For me, blogging is an important exercise that helps me to process what I think into something relatively coherent – to “see what I say” so to speak.
Since I have a foot in both the academic world and the practitioner world, I also appreciate how immediate blogging can be in terms of getting ideas out for a fair hearing. The act of getting our thoughts out of our head and onto the screen is one important step, and when we spread those ideas and invite feedback, our approaches and emerging frameworks can move forward far more quickly than through a more formal publishing route.
Some people may think that the simplicity of Twitter has bumped blogging off the map, but my experience is that the most helpful “tweets” are links to longer-form articles and blog posts. Many of these materials exist only on the internet – they haven’t yet been expanded into books or offered as conference presentations. Blogs have been a very important part of my professional development, and I often share my blog roll to get others started.
So here’s a thank you to all the bloggers that have been most helpful to me, and a word of encouragement to all the professionals who wonder if blogging is worth the time and effort.
And here’s that latest version of the learning components list that you helped me to improve. I appreciate your feedback!
Components 1-29-13 (PDF)