Sydney School of Education and Social Work events - 2012 Archive

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Networked professional learning

20 November 2012

Join us on November 20 for a CoCo Seminar by Professor Peter Sloep titled “Networked professional learning”.

A Learning Networks is an online social network that has been designed specifically to facilitate learning (professional development). It may be viewed as a dynamic collection of communities, that wax and wane, come to overlap and drift apart in response to the participants needs and wants. In such a community professional development (learning) and being professionally active can become two sides of the same coin.

In a Learning Network, learning takes place by accessing relevant resources. These are in the first instance the Learning Network’s participants themselves. They are the primary sources of expertise. They then adopt a teaching role and direct fellow participants to (online) artefacts or other experts they know. However, they will also act as providers of all kinds of support - as learning coaches, mentors, critical friends, business contacts.

The great potential of the Learning Network concept lies in its facilitating the exploration and exploitation of the weak links between its participants. They are the as yet unknown sources of new knowledge and support. This is achieved by equipping the Learning Network with a variety of request-and-recommend tools that support its participants in every needed way.

Many of these tools are similar to what existing social network sites offer. However, ordinary social networks do only see their participants as the means to the end of securing income, through advertisements or selling their profiling data. This is reflected in the tools they offer.

A Learning Network, rather, is a social network that seeks to serve the learning needs of its participants. The tools developed for it should reflect this orientation.

This seminar will be available live online at

Event details

  • When: 12.30pm - 1.30pm
  • Where: Education Building (A35), Room 230
  • Cost: Free
  • Contact:

    Sadhbh Warren

    T: 9351 2612


  • Speaker/ Performer:

    Dr Sloep is full professor in Technology Enhanced Learning at The Centre for Learning Sciences and Technologies (CELSTEC), Open University Netherlands (OUNL) and program director of its R&D program on Networked Learning.

    His research encompasses such topics as learning design, learning objects and open educational resources, as well as knowledge sharing and creative collaboration in communities and networks.

    The Learning Networks program researches online social networks designed to foster non-formal learning and innovation. The research encompasses such themes as professional competence development, learner support systems and services, and community building.

    Sloep is the founding chair of the Technical Committee Learning Technology of the Dutch Standards Organisation (NEN) and is a frequent speaker at national and international conferences. He serves on the editorial board of Research in Learning Technology. He maintains an online presence through such social media as Twitter, Blogspot, Scoop.IT, Mendeley (username: pbsloep).

    His most recent publications include:

    • - Sloep, P. B., Boon, J., Cornu, B., Klebl, M., Lefrère, P., Naeve, A., Scott, P., et al. (2008). A European Research Agenda for Lifelong Learning. International Journal of Technology Enhanced Learning, 3(2), 204–228. Retrieved from
    • - Berlanga, A., Rijpkema, M. B., Brouns, F., Sloep, P., & Fetter, S. (2011). Personal Profiles: Enhancing Social Interaction in Learning Networks. International Journal of Web Based Communities, 7(1)(66-82). Retrieved from
    • - Sloep, P.B. (2009). Fostering Sociability in Learning Networks through Ad-Hoc Transient Communities. In M. Purvis and B.T.R. Savarimuthu (Eds.), Computer-Mediated Social Networking, ICCMSN 2008, LNAI 5322 (62-75). Heidelberg, Germany: Springer. Retrieved from

Networked professional learning

Where Education Building (A35), Room 230 When

20 November 2012

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