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 complete the activities below.

To Do:

  1. Read Howard Rheingold’s Advice on Building a PLN. The ebook Learning in a Digital Age by Cathy L. Green of Oklahoma State University also has some great resources for how to build a digital PLN that can be used to provide additional to connect with peers, not just through social media. There is a reference list with several additional resources at the bottom of the page.
  2. Find NEW professional groups or individuals who align with your professional interests.
    • If you’re interested in connecting with groups that have a focus on education, a good place to start is to review the Twitter EdChat calendar and Inside Higher Ed’s Twitter Directory X (formerly Twitter) accounts.
    • Use the search tool in X to find 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 X account names, then X is likely the place where others will be found. Or perhaps the common gathering place for your discipline is something other than X, such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram or a Slack.
    • See also the X list of people and organizations related to Ontario Extend for possible accounts to follow.
  3. Represent new additions to your PLN. Now, using the EdTech Sandbox find a creative visual way to showcase/illustrate which new professional groups or new individuals align most to your professional interests. Many people create a mindmap for this activity but try to stretch your imagination and find other ways to represent your connections to these new groups or individuals.
  4. After you make your submission, save the web address to your response (found in the green confirmation box) so you can use it later for your badge submission form.


Learning in the Digital Age by Cathy L. Green, Oklahoma State University is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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

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127 Responses for this Activity

  • Collaborator Activity #3
    by Baljeet Bilkhu (@bbilkhu)

    Please find the link to my Miro Mindmap that illustrates my PLN Cultivation

  • Cultivate your PLN
    by Angela Rozema (@arozema)

    The link here should show you my submission for my PLN growth. I hope to complete some of this over the next few weeks and several months.

  • Activity #3 – Cultivate Your PLN
    by Tam Visser (@t_visser2)

    Here are some new accounts I have followed on LinkedIn to help cultivate my PLN:

  • Cultivate your PLN
    by Afshan Jabeen (@ajabeen)

    PLNs are very important for our students’ success. Through Twitter, LinkedIn, and other virtual resources, I can provide valuable connections to my students. Other professional associations, such as the American Chemical Society and chemical journals, are also available and provide access to a range of networking opportunities. Students can use these networking resources to improve more… »

  • Personal Reflection
    by Carolyn Nesbitt-Larking (@Carolyn)

    Due to the fact that the teaching I do has a foundation of industry best practices, it is important to recognize that, for student success in the industry, it is important to constantly scan what is happening in the industry and try to incorporate into the classroom. There are so many changes that take place more… »

  • PLN – Carolyn Nesbitt-Larking
    by Carolyn Nesbitt-Larking (@Carolyn)

    Starting to expand to industry organizations and professional associations as a way of developing current material and content for students, then I will expand to colleagues in various tourism & hospitality professors across the province and country as a way of identifying how we can implement current material in our classrooms.

  • My PLN
    by anh lam (@anhlam)

    Please use the link provided and view the second slide titled “Cultivate Your PLN” for my iteration.

  • Cultivating your PLN
    by Ani Amirmooradian Malhami (@Ani)

    I made connections on LinkedIn with these groups, companies and newsletters to expand my PLN. My plan is to engage with these groups more actively moving forward.

  • Extend Activity#3 Cultivate you PLN
    by Oday Aswad (@odayaswad)

    For this activity, I referred to an interesting X group that provides our students with cross-country educational and entertainment content. I provided examples of the connection between Canadian and American institutions nurtured via the Collaborative Student Success group on the X platform. #StudentSuccess Collaborative Students Success is a large, active, and inclusive educational group that more… »

  • Reseau X
    by Attien Ama Nathalie Boni epse Kouame (@Attien)

    Reseau X est fort utile.

    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.

    Creative Commons License
    This work by Ontario Extend is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.


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