A personal learning network, although often emergent and continually developing, does not just happen. It requires cultivation. To begin your thinking on how to cultivate your PLN, read Howard Rheingold’s Advice on Building a PLN.

  • Find a professional group or individuals who align with your professional interests. Start by reviewing the Twitter EdChat calendar and Inside Higher Ed’s Twitter Directory. Find the virtual places that feel most comfortable and sustainable for you. Go where your people are, be strategic, and take your cues from people in your network. For example, if you notice at a conference that several presenters are posting their Twitter account names, then Twitter is likely the place where others will be found. Or perhaps the common gathering place for your discipline is something other than Twitter, such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram or a Slack.See also the Twitter list of people and organizations related to Ontario Extend for possible accounts to follow.
  • Represent new additions to your PLN. Now, using the Extend Toolkit find a creative visual way to showcase/illustrate which professional group aligns most to your professional interests.

This activity is part of the Cultivate Your PLN section of the Collaborator Module.

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22 Responses for this Activity

  • Cultivating My PLN
    by Shauna Roch (@sroch)

    For this process, I first chose three topic areas to focus on: Open Education, Online Learning and Education Technology. Then I explored opportunities to connect with networks around these topics. I started with high-level groups which I can spend some time exploring before refining my individual connections.  I have distinguished in my map where I more… »

  • Mind mapping my educational world
    by Pamela LeBrun (@PamLeBrun)

    My PLN is comprised of many areas: LinkedIn, Conestoga Teams sites-where I teach, my own personal learning, and professional learning. I love to read articles and professional posts regarding educational advances and new practices, which I look for on LinkedIn and anywhere in my university library. Our professional network on Teams through Conestoga College, where more… »

  • Cultivate your PLN – hwhitelaw
    by Haley Whitelaw (@hwhitelaw)

    My PLN is comprised of three main networks that contribute to each other. The first are my professional affiliations and industry icons > working experience in a variety of roles that I will pass along to my students The second are my connections within Fanshawe College where I teach > providing ample opportunities for collaboration more… »

  • test
    by Lindsay Woodside (@lwoodside)

    test test test

  • PLN map
    by Kim Wilmink (@KWilmink)

    I have attached a mind map of my PLN.  It is constantly changing and shifting as my role and focus changes.  I am a huge fan of Twitter.  It feels like constantly being provided with best headlines or movie trailers and then I get to choose which full articles/movies I get to watch!

  • PLN for Sight, Sound, and Story Workshop Development
    by Elan Paulson (@Elan Paulson)

    My PLN is a combination of new follows on Twitter, possible new contacts for informational interviews, and some research with which I can do some citation chaining. Coming from literary studies, I believe that texts provide a voice and a “network” for reflecting and growing as well. Finally, I will make more of an effort more… »

  • Holly’s PLN
    by Holly Ashbourne (@hashbourne)

    Here is a snapshot of my PLN. It is rather small at the moment. I am looking forward to finding new connections in the areas of open and digital pedagogies, ed tech, libraries and eLearning, and library technologies.

  • Cultivate the PLN
    by Dorina Grossu (@dgrossu)

    Connections are done easier than before due to technological advancements that were made available. As a result of Social Media Network groups, websites, Artificial Intelligence, and machine learning, I can now select the groups or topics that I am most interested in. Aside from connections that I have on ResearchGate that are researchers, engineers etc., more… »

  • Tina’s Cultivate Your PLN Activity
    by Martina Kolodzey (@Tiniko)

    I love twitter for so many reasons.  I used to use it for personal information – learning about news, and politics, as an interest, and then I realized that people in my field are on there as well! I was so happy! I expand my PLN whenever I notice more information or other tweets or more… »

  • SFischer Collaborator PLN
    by Sarah Fischer (@sfischer)

    This is a screen capture of my current PLN. I look forward to further cultivating it!

    1 Resource for this Activity

    • Baby Network
      shared by Christopher Rowe (@ChristopherRowe)

      I’m just getting started of developing my personal learning network. Actively pursuing this hasn’t been a priority for me in the past, but as I’ve begun to engage in the instructional design and ed tech industry, I see that it’s becoming increasingly important.

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