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CE Credit Hours: 2.00 Continuing Education Credit Hours
High-quality professional learning is essential for addressing today’s educational challenges, and online communities of practice and social networks offer a powerful opportunity to strengthen such learning. Based on information gathered from the U.S. Department of Education Office of Educational Technology, this course offers evidence for the efficacy of these avenues for professional learning and an argument for the importance of integrating them. In addition, a model and set of design principles for integrating and selecting professional learning strategies is presented.
1. Identify the need for professional learning and collaboration, and how educators can embrace online communities of practice and social networks to meet these needs.
2. Discuss the value and benefits of online communities of practice and social networking for educators.
3. Summarize the method, purpose, structure, and focus of the Connected Learning Communities Model of integration.
4. Describe ways that district leaders can motivate educators to become connected to learning communities or deepen their existing connections by formally or informally endorsing such endeavors.
5. Outline the design principals that support integration of online communities of practice and social learning networks.
6. Review the qualities of professional learning experiences that are most likely to impact teaching and learning.
7. Summarize the specific steps of action to be taken by districts as they implement and fine-tune professional learning strategies.
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