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Hybrid professional learning networks for knowledge workers: educational theory inspiring new practices

By Marlies Bitter-Rijpkema and Steven Verjans


Bitter-Rijpkema, M., & Verjans, S. (2010). Hybrid professional learning networks for knowledge workers: educational theory inspiring new practices. In L. Creanor, D. Hawkridge, K. Ng, & F. Rennie (Eds.), ALT-C 2010 - Conference Proceedings: "Into something rich and strange" - making sense of the sea-change (pp. 166-174). September, 7-9, 2010, University of Nottingham, UK.Knowledge workers need to acquire new knowledge and competences at an ever-increasing pace due to the fast changes in today’s knowledge society.. In addition, new (online) technologies revolutionise the way we communicate, learn and work. They trigger structural changes in the context and nature of professional work. For knowledge workers such as journalists, librarians or product designers it is not only the tools they work with that change. Structural changes also affect the core of their profession, as ubiquitous information, delivered via new media, is readily available any time any place. Traditional professional learning cannot cope with these changes. Hence, new ways of professional learning are needed. The question we need to answer is how to address the specific learning needs of knowledge professionals. Experience shows that these needs are not sufficiently met by existing learning technologies, neither by institutional (virtual) managed learning environments (MLE) nor by web2.0 based personal environments (PLE). Both approaches have crucial shortcomings for the highly contextualized teamwork of knowledge professionals. Hence this paper introduces the concept of hybrid professional learning networks as combining the best of both worlds, by offering manageable open flexibility and connectivity as well as the safety and control that matches the professional knowledge workers’ needs

Topics: PLE, personal learning environment, professional learning, MLE, managed learning environment, web 2.0, hybrid professional learning networks
Year: 2010
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