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Welcome to the Course

Hello and welcome to Learning in the Network Age! Thank you for joining us.

I’m Dr Nicholas Fair a Knowledge Engineer with the University of Southampton’s IT Innovation research group, Southampton Education School and the Web Science Institute.

The web, and now the impact of Covid-19, has changed lots of things about the way we learn. On this course, you’ll get to explore those changes and develop the skills and knowledge necessary to navigate in this network learning environment.

We’ll begin by exploring some of our digital differences. After all, we don’t all behave the same offline, so why should we online?

Next, you’ll discover something about your personal learning network (PLN). This is the network of connections and interactions you have with people, devices and information - online and offline. By the end of week 1 you will have exclusive access to your very own personal learning network (PLN) map, which will help you to understand what your network looks like and how you use it.

In week 2, you’ll find lots of useful links, hints and tips for you to explore. You’ll also explore some of the important issues you need to think carefully about as you develop your PLN skills - such as your online identity and digital literacies.

This course provides you with the opportunity to be part of a community of students and teachers from across the university and globally. So, throughout the course, we hope you’ll make maximum use of the Comments section, to share your thoughts and ideas, to support each other, and to learn from each other.

This is your course, so the more you get involved, the more you’ll get back.

Your online mentoring team

Along with Nic, during each week, Prof. Christian Bokhove, will also be providing online support. Look out for us all in the comments, and feel free to chat with us.

What will you have achieved by the end of the course?

If you follow the guided activities week by week and get fully involved, by the end of Week One you will be better able to:

  • Explain what it means to be a learner in the network age

  • Describe the impact of ‘digital differences’ on our learning networks

  • Investigate what your Personal Learning Network (PLN) looks like and identify patterns in how you currently use it

By the end of Week Two you will be able to more effectively:

  • Grow your PLN and assess the reliability of online information and services

  • Manage your PLN and your online identity

  • Activate your PLN for learning purposes

  • Explore a wide range of digital tools to assist with growing, managing and activating your PLN

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This article is from the free online course:

Learning in the Network Age

University of Southampton

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