I’ve been reading a lot about Personal Learning Environments (PLEs) lately. There seems to be different interpretations of exactly what a PLE is. In my graduate program for Instructional Design we’ve developed personal websites, A.K.A. “BaseCamps”. My understanding is that these basecamps will serve not only as a “virtual portfolio” of our coursework in the program, but as a platform from which we can build a PLE, and extend our experiences as a lifelong learner.

In the 2009 Educause article about PLEs, the topic is explored and defined, and examined from implementation and implication perspectives. The article states: “PLEs represent a shift away from the model in which students consume information through independent channels such as the library, a textbook, or an LMS, moving instead to a model where students draw connections from a growing matrix of resources that they select and organize.” I really connected with this quote. What is more motivating and empowering than creating your own way of constructing meaning, in a way that will transcend the educational institution and ingrain a lifelong practice of learning and collaborating?

So my question to you is: How do you define PLEs, and what does yours look like?

Mine, in progress, is at www.michellemurphyid.com

Feedback welcome.

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