Steps for Building a Personal Learning Network

  1. Create a blog
    1. consider a wiki if you have information to share (other than periodic blog entries)
    2. wikis are also good for collecting information from others (who may edit or add their own information)
    3. use your blog as a reflection device and to-do list
      1. I usually have several unpublished posts that I am working on
      2. I use posts to crystalize my thoughts on a subject.
        1. Nothing worse than reviewing a website or coming back from a conference and doing NOTHING with that valuable information.
        2. Even if you have not had a chance to research something, blog your research plan as a form of to-do
    4. register your blog at Technorati (link) so you can be found
  2. Build a network of important and relevant blogs
    1. consider blogs from people in your field and blogs that make you think
    2. pick an RSS reader (or maybe two) to synthesize all of your blogs
    3. blog about education-oriented websites or hot topics
    4. blog about good projects or lesson plans
  3. Build a network of bookmarks using Delicious or Diigo
    1. profile users by looking at their "Top 10 tags"
    2. some users list their blog at the top of their Delicious page
    3. Diigo has groups that you can join
    4. Diigo has an easy way to profile users to see if they have similar bookmarks andf groups
    5. Once you bookmark a website at Delicious, find other users who have bookmarked the same site
      1. find other relvant users by reviewing how they tagged the site and how long ago.
      2. I am always impressed by users who blogged great websites years ago.
    6. Add a widget to your blog with your own bookmarks and bookmarks from important friends
  4. Build a Twitter network
    1. try and find professionals who have relevant Tweets
      1. people who Tweet several times a day usually have irrelevant tweets ("walking my dog", etc.)
      2. Twiter Directories: (link) (link) (link) (link)
    2. keep your network informed of important discoveries you make
      1. websites, conversations, articles, events
  5. Create alerts using Google Alerts (link)
  6. Join relevant Nings
    1. Do this after you feel comfortable with other aspects of your PLN
    2. You don't have to wait, but the people on Nings are relatively tech-saavy and assume others are too
  7. See what I forgot by reviewing my original blog posting (link)
  8. Shelly Terrel's guide for building a PLN (link)
  9. Donnelle O'Brien's PLN advice (link)
  10. Andrew Marcinek's PLN strategy (link)
  11. Personal Learning Network Resources
Barry Dahl (link)
Check your Web2.0 rating (link)