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PLE_SOU Conference WORKSHOP | Fernando Albuquerque Costa, Cristina Costa, José Mota TITLE: How university students perceive the PLE concept?PROPOSAL: The idea is to design a research study FROM SCRATCH. A study focused on what learners consider the PLE to be as part of their learning strategy, and how they use their PLE to support their own learning. TARGET: All conference delegates, who would like to apply this concept to practice in their own countries, are invited to join. PROBLEM RESEARCH QUESTIONS RESEARCH GOALS DATA COLLECTING Southampton, July 13th
PLE_SOU Conference WORKSHOP | Fernando Albuquerque Costa, Cristina Costa, José Mota AbstractThe PLE represents a shift in paradigm. It is impelling a new ‘learning movement’ away from the towards an open learning model intraditional models of teaching and learningwhich learners adopt their own strategies for learning. The PLEphilosophy suggests great potential in allowing educators to implement new ideas regarding howeducational contexts should be organized. It also provides new ways of implementing andpursuing a new kind of learning outcomes. itIn this new perspective, learning is not just a matter of memorizing concepts and facts;focuses more on the skills and competences learners can acquirethrough the opportunities they are given. The PLE celebrates autonomyand urges the independent learner to develop learning strategies which matchtheir learning needs. The PLE provides the foundations needed to pursue lifelong learning in the21st century.Moreover, the proliferation of ICT at home and as well as at the University (Somekh, 2007)provides educators with opportunities to develop learning environments that encourage studentsto be more motivated and more effectively engaged in the learning process.These changes imply a revamping of the ways in which institutions perceive their role (Siemens,2008). To this respect, it is fundamental to continuously improve the quality of the learningprocess, viewing Education as an academic, individual and social experience, and givinglearners control and freedom. These are two crucial elements of one’s lifelonglearning experience (Paulsen, 2009; Anderson, 2007). This encompasses the acknowledgment ofthe importance of informal learning, social networking, online presence anddigital identity as part of the learning process and in the development of individualsthroughout their lives (Attwell, 2007)PLEs have their focus onusers’ practices regarding learning with different technologies. PLEsbridge formal and informal learning, integrate the learning experiences from variouscontexts and promote connectedness and openness (Anderson, 2008; Attwell, 2007;Downes, 2008, 2007; Wilson et al, 2006, 2007). However, building an effective personal learningenvironment, with the use of various tools and services, sometimes described as “small piecesloosely joined” (Downes, 2008; Harmelen, 2008), is often not an easy task forthe common user. Additionally, and despite all its potential benefits, the learner’s newrole can, in some circumstances, also be perceived as too demanding. Hence,it is very important to understand the nature and extension of these difficultieswhen trying to devise efficient ways of helping learners make the most of what they have at theirdisposal for learning.Southampton, July 13th