I am a member of a number of online communities. Some of them I am more active in than others. While it is very easy to become a member of an online community, I’ve found successfully learning in a online collaborative environment is actually very complex. When I analyze all the social networking communities I belong to, from fantasy sports leagues, to FaceBook and LinkedIn, discussion forums, any number of Nings, Plurk and many others, the online community I gain the most from has to be my Twitter network.

In an attempt to uncover how and why my Twitterverse seems to dominate my online collaboration time and learning, I’ve decided to apply a set of criteria laid out by Palloff and Pratt (2005) to help me determine if my PLN tool of choice is a successful collaborative online community. Palloff and Pratt offer a number of elements that they suggest contribute to a successful collaborative online community;

  • people,
  • shared purpose,
  • guidelines,
  • technology,
  • collaborative learning,
  • reflective practice and
  • social presence

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It’s July 12, 2009 and Leadership Day 2009 is here. As I set out write this post in response to Dr. McLeod’s call to arms, I found myself going back to review a School Leadership eLearning module that was developed by many talented individuals from e-Read Ohio at The University of Akron, where I serve as the Web Services Manager. One part of the module focuses specifically on the Role of the Principal and a number of quotes from that section seem particularly relevant today as I am pondering what technology leadership should look like and what role technology plays in a school vision.

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NECC 2009 in Washington DC has come and gone. Going into the beginning of this week, I had mixed feelings about not being able to attend “the premier educational technology conference” this year. Kim and I had a great time in San Antonio last summer at NECC 2008. We were able to present a Model Lesson, attend a number of informative sessions and meet a bunch of great people, like Tim Holt and Ewan McIntosh.

As I was preparing my session proposals back in October 2008, I was really excited to get back to NECC and I promised myself that in 2009 I would actually take the opportunity to introduce myself to all the people I admire at the Blogger’s Cafe, like David Warlick, Dean Shareski and Dr. Scott McLeod. But it wasn’t to be this year. All the proposals I submitted were declined by the selection committee.


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This is a personal blog. The resources, information and views presented on Raised Digital are solely the opinion of Jeremy S. Brueck, and are not meant to reflect the views of my employer.

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Why Raised Digital?

Today’s students were born digital but those responsible for their education were not. Youngsters arrive at school in tune with the social context and experience the Web offers. Children thrive when teachers find ways to educate them in a more flexible, hypertext manner. This space focuses on development of and support for teachers in their use of technology as they cultivate 21st century content knowledge and skills in their students.