Tag Archives: PLNs

EdTech 543: COPs, PLNs & Connectivism


Artifact Introduction:

During our second week in our Social Networking class, we were asked to creatively express our understanding of:

  • Communities of Practice
  • Personal Learning Networks
  • Connectivism

This “creative expression”, needed to reflect that we understand that these concepts, while connected, are different. We needed to ensure that we used at least one symbol per concept & visually represent how they are related and connected.

Artifact: Creative Expression via Prezi

Reflection of Learning/Standard Connection:

This creative expression is a Prezi where I used the building blocks template to facilitate my expression of how I view these concepts. According to Wegner & Snyder (2000) Communities of Practice (COPs) are: “groups of people informally bound together by shared expertise & passion for a joint enterprise, however, people in communities of practice share their experiences & knowledge in free-flowing, creative ways that foster new approaches to problems.” This instantly reminded me of Facebook groups because most of the groups that are created are driven by a “machine” or a “purpose” all participants are there because they share an interest, experiences, or are all there to obtain similar information.

Similarly, Personal Learning Communities (PLNs) are more informal networks of people interacting within their personal learning environments. This reminded me of a traditional Facebook page a person may have where connections are made with Facebook “friends” that are all joined together in more random & serendipitous ways. Yet, many times people go to their traditional Facebook feeds to ask for advice, give advice, and suggestions.

Finally, Connectivism is each set of building blocks, Communities of Practice & Personal Learning Networks, put together to create a large tower of interconnectedness & power. Where “internet technologies have created new opportunities for people to learn and share information across the web and among themselves. (Siemens, 2005)

AECT Standard 4.3 Reflection on Practice: To create this creative reflection I analyzed COPs, PLNs & the theory of Connectivism & then used the knowledge I gained, to develop a Prezi that accurately portrayed my interpretation of these concepts & their interconnectedness. This helped me develop a deeper understanding of each concept and how they relate to one another.


Siemens, G. (2005, January). Connectivism: A learning theory for the digital age. International Journal of Instructional Technology and Distance Learning. Retrieved from: http://www.itdl.org/journal/jan_05/article01.htm

Wenger, E. C., & Synder, W. M. (2000, January). Communities of Practice: The Organizational Frontier. Harvard Business Review. Retrieved from: www.rareplanet.org/sites/rareplanet.org/files/Communities_of_Practice__The_Organizational_Frontier%5B1%5D.pd