Wednesday, November 18, 2009


Dropbox is a gotta have service.  

Watch their demo here

I don't endorse services too often but if you do decide to use please sign up through this  Dropbox referral link

Monday, November 16, 2009

What is a PLE?


A Personal Learning Environment (PLE) is not a tool or single technology it is a place, learner-centric system of networks, personal portal (webdesk, dashboard, e-portfolio), where a learner organizea their tools, communities, contacts, resources, and services for the purpose of learning (content and process).


“…a collection of tools, brought together under the conceptual notion of openness, interoperability, and learner control. As such, they are comprised of two elements – the tools and the conceptual notions that drive how and why we select individual parts.” (George Siemens, “PLEs – I Acronym, Therefore I Exist,” 15 April 2007 blog entry)

“An ecosystem of connected educational resources facilitated by a (large) set of tools and fueled by collaboration opportunities facilitating the consumption of content that enables an increased understanding of specific knowledge domains.” (Lee Kraus, PLE: not personal and not learning, 14 June 2007 blog entry)

"A Personal Learning Environment (PLE) is a collection of free, distributed, web-based tools, usually centred around a blog, linked together and aggregating content using RSS feeds and simple HTML scripts."

"a Personal Learning Environment is a facility for an individual to access, aggregate, configure and manipulate digital artefacts of their ongoing learning experiences."

"Essentially, they are a collection of tools, brought together under the conceptual notion of openness, interoperability, and learner control."

"PLE are very personal both in the sense of being independent of the university or employer and in the sense of being hand-crafted — although a bit necessarily too hand-crafted today. Even with a more ideal integrative application, PLE will still be highly customized to the needs and preferences of the learner. Portions of even the software application PLE will be kept behind our personal firewall. Learning is deeply personal, AND social."

"A group of people who can guide your learning, point you to learning opportunities, answer your questions, and give you the benefit of their own knoweldge and expereience” –Daniel Tobin, Ph.D.

PLE pedagogy= it offers a portal to the world, through which learners can explore and create, according to their own intersts and directions, interacting at all times with their friends and community. the student creates not the instuctor!

Related Keywords:

personal learning environments, PLE, personal knowledge management, PKM, personal information management, PIM, personal learning toolkit, PLT, online learning environment, Personal Work and Learning Environment (PWLE), OLE, social software, self-directed learning, life-long learning, informal learning, learning ecosystems, learning networks, personal knowledge management, e-portfolio, virtual learning environment, VLE, digital lifestyle aggregator, DLA, continuing professional development, CPD

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Video: The Networked Student

Watch this 5 min video about the 21st Century Networked Student and Personal Learning Networks (PLN) at:

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Visual Thinking, Learning, and Tools Collection

Right vs. Left Brain Hemispheres

Outlining with MS Word

One great hidden feature of MS Word is the Outline View.
(Click on "View" on menu, select "outline")

The collapse and expand features are really nice for switching from big picture to smaller sub views.

Watch this screencast to learn how.

Concept Mapping with PowerPoint

The 2007 PowerPoint edition has a nice feature called SmartArt. This new capiblity turns PowerPoint into a powerful Concept Mapping Tool.

Read about concept mapping in Wikipedia


Read and watch the demo:
Spice up your text with SmartArt graphics at

View each PowerPoint slide as a canvas. Don't forget that you can break through the templates and just use the drawing tools to create your own modesl and diagrams. 

See these two video to show you how to build a concept map from scratch rather than using the smart art auto templates:

PowerPoint can also be used as a basic photo editor as well. Once you make your concept map don't forget you can then take a screen shot and upload your image into another document or up on the web.