Key social learning resources: part 15 #sociallearning

Here is this week’s roundup of 5 resources about social learning and the use of social media for learning.  Again lots of great articles to choose from this week.

1 – We start this week with a couple of educational resources.  The first is So.cl.  This is a research experiment, from Microsoft, for students focused on combining web browsing, search, and social networking for the purposes of learning.

2 – The second resource is Judy O’Connell’s presentation, New Culture of Learning, which looks a Web 2.0 in education but also looks ahead to Web 3.0.  Judy describes it as follows:

“Web 2.0 allows students and educators to create and interact both synchronously and asynchronously, formally or informally, at school, at home, in distance education programs, in the workplace, on all manner of devices. This shift has required an open mind about future possibilities, while also documenting innovative or exemplar practices and their relationship to curriculum. Now Web 3.0 heralds a further development in online information behaviours and knowledge discovery techniques. Are we keeping up-to-date with the relevant network and social media changes that are affecting the online learning environment that we wish to embrace? Can you spot the wolf in sheep’s clothing?”

3 – And now we move to social approaches in the workplace. In his recent article Joshua David explains the value of social collaboration (which of course includes social learning) in the enterprise and how the social intranet is a key place to supporting this.

“Social collaboration strategies and techniques can bring a great deal of value into any company. They can enhance employee engagement, support knowledge management, and extend your ability to solve complex challenges. Your intranet should be at the center of these conversations, facilitating this collaboration and allowing employees to help shape the culture of your organization.”

3  -  Harold Jarche says that one major challenge in helping organizations improve collaboration and knowledge-sharing is getting people to see themselves as nodes in various networks, with different types of relationships between them. He believes we need to look at this with new eyes.  Here is just one of the ways that he describes:

“Resilience and Redundancy: A professional learning network, with its redundant connections, repetition of information and indirect communications, is a much more resilient system than any designed development program can be. Redundancy is also a good principal for supporting social learning diffusion. There is always more than one way to communicate or find something and just because something was blogged, tweeted or posted does not mean it will be understood and eventually internalized as actionable knowledge. The more complex or novel the idea, the more time it will take to be understood.”

4 –  And finally, to complete this week’s round-up of resource Pam Moore writes a posting called Social Business, it’s NOT about the next big thing, that is chock full of good advice for those wanting to encourage social and collaborative approach to learning and working in the workplace.  Here are some key points:

“Evolving your organization into a social business is not going to happen overnight. It’s going to take work. Real work. Roll up your sleeves, get your hands dirty and make it happen. There is no “guru” that will be able to give you the magic 3 steps you need to take for success.”

“Every organization is different. What works for you is not a recipe for success for me. We have different goals, different objectives.”

“There is one thing that is the same for every business who sets a goal to become a social business. Things are guaranteed to change. Throw out your old thinking, rules and even some of the old processes. What use to work to measure success is not the same as what works today. You can’t control the message, who delivers it when and where. Social media is dynamic, fluid, evolving and filled with movement. Trying to put a finger on it to keep it constant is simply not possible.  Embrace it. Learn to love and grow with the change and you will then be able to evolve with the ecosystem versus being left behind.”

This is the last weekly roundup of social learning resources in 2011, the next edition will be in 2012.  However, I will be making some general postings over the next week or two with my own review of 2011.