Monthly Archives: January 2006

Peace Wiki

A very nice example of enthused collaborative learning efforts was presented today, the Peace Wiki. Students of Media and Communication Studies took part in this seminar on “Virtual Spaces – The New Public”. With support from the Centre for Peace Research at our university, they analysed, interviewed, explored, researched, debated, organised and finally presented a topic close to all our hearts: peace.

From the viewpoint of using learning technology, the depth and breadth to which the platform (MediaWiki) was used was most impressive. Enthusiasm for the topic and moving experiences during the project work, where students interviewed leading figures of various peace movements, could be clearly felt. This led to an enriched presentation rich in media and rich in emotions.

The hope is that such an example of good practice could spread. However, be warned, it is not the technology that creates a good product, it’s the motivation spurred on by personal relevance and interest as well as the community/group aspects.


Personal Development Planning

Just worked my way through some definitions in the area of e-portfolios and PDPs. Here’s what the QAA believes personal development planning is:

“a structured and supported process undertaken by an individual to reflect upon their own learning, performance and/or achievement and to plan for their personal, educational and career development”

For some time now, I, probably in common with fellow e-learning folks, struggled to distinguish between PDP and e-portfolios. Apart from the misunderstandings around e-portfolios in themselves, which I cover in another posting, I analysed the meaning of these two terms thus:

PDPs look forward into the future, so are about planning and development, appraisal and goals.

E-portfolios, on the other hand look backward on achievements. They can deal with reflection on past activities or simply recording work done. This stands in contrast to the above definition.