Effective networks and communities offer incredible structures and mechanisms for sharing information, tacit knowledge and collaborative learning. In a changing industry like education, good networks can help us keep up with innovation and good practice without having to learn everything as individuals.
Without connections to others, we’re on our own, and limited in what we can achieve. If you’ve ever tried to do anything new or innovative, you’ve probably already discovered the liability of disconnectedness; perhaps you’ve experienced the frustration of developing something from scratch, only to discover another business or college had something you could have adapted or even improved.
The ‘Learning and Teaching at Navitas’ website is not a network in itself, but showcases learning and teaching initiatives, projects and events to encourage collaboration and sharing across the whole Navitas L&T community and beyond.
In the spirit of open sharing (and bad drawing!), the short time-lapse video below shows a few insights into how and why we surface and share practices from our global learning and teaching community:
Our experience so far suggests that this shareable content is a powerful approach. This website has been steadily gaining traction since it was launched in February 2016, attracting over 100,000 pageviews its first 12 months. The amount and steady growth of this audience suggests that many people are, as hoped, finding value in this space.
What’s the value in sharing?
Content on this website inspires all sorts of unpredictable sharing, connection and collaboration. Beyond the numbers, we often hear back from contributors about the rewarding outcomes of sharing their ideas and practices. Below are two examples of this:
Case study #1
Jon Hvaal decided to share his process for making Welcoming Videos for his students. Teachers at another college loved this resource, incorporated it into their local professional development, produced Welcome Videos for each unit and shared a sample back with the community! At a different college, Jon’s article was shared in a Teacher Lounge and prompted numerous teachers to develop their own and receive positive feedback from their students. Meanwhile, Jon was able to share some impressive statistics on the amount of pageviews his article received to support his own professional development journey.
Case study #2
Michelle Cavaleri did her PhD research on video feedback and shared her research findings as well as a number of webinars on the practical how-to of giving video feedback to students. One college in particular took notice and requested additional webinars, keen to train up its teachers to provide this kind of feedback to students. Michelle has also let us know that her work has been shared in Association for Academic Language and Learning (AALL) and she was contacted by someone from the University of Bath who was doing teacher training on feedback. We’ve also seen her work shared and discussed multiple times in popular social media communities for teaching professionals in Australia.
We love to hear where stories have ‘travelled’ and understand the value they continue to create long after their authors have closed up their laptops! If you’ve seen a story from this website being shared and discussed or received feedback on your own piece of work, please get in touch and let us know: firstname.lastname@example.org.