Viral Professional Development: June 2 - 22, 2008

Examples of VPD

Examples of VPD

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
Number of replies: 22

I thought I would start a new thread of examples of what we consider VPD. So I'll kick it off, I'm on my way to an international distributed medical education conference which as an aside has an interesting process. We start in Sudbury, Ontario for two days, then we spend two days travelling by bus to remote training sites in the north (there are three different routes to select from) and end up in Thunder Bay, Ontario where we spend two more days!

I'm presenting for three hours on Web2.0 and distributed medical education, so I've decided to use a wetpaint wiki as my primary presentation tool. It is divided into different Web2.0 tool's pages (definition, examples). As the presentation progresses, I'm hoping we will fill the tool pages with ideas about how that tool might be used in distributed education. The wiki remains after the conference for people to add more ideas and issues or just refer to. I'll let you know how it works.

In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Examples of VPD

by Heather Ross -
Deirdere,

Thanks for starting this topic. It sounds like an interesting wiki. Is it public or private? Would you mind sharing it with me.

For the past couple of years I've created wikis to go along with presentations that I give so that attendees can access the resources that I mention later.

I have a couple of examples of VPD that I'll share. First, a number of years ago, while working on a degree in journalism I become a section editor for my university's newspaper. When I started I hadn't yet taken the graphics course where we learned desktop publishing, so I learned on the job from my fellow editors (one in particular). I then passed that knowledge on to not only future editors, but also classmates when I eventually took that graphics course.

The second example is when I went to work at my current job. My colleague in the next office and I regularly ask each other questions about needed solutions to problems (design issues, what technology may help, etc.) I share that knowledge with instructors that I work with and colleagues at other institutions through e-mail, blogging and Twitter.

I learned far more in these two examples than I ever have attending a conference or workshop.
In reply to Heather Ross

Re: Examples of VPD

by Sharon Porterfield -

Heather,

Funny how some activities have various names. The experiences you describe are all considered part of 'mentoring' here at WestJet. There are only two of us with actual education and experience with instructional design. We are put into "pods" (I live a Dilbert existence!) with what could be considered "Jr. Instructional Designers". We brainstorm together, seek advice, and peer review each other's work. They're helping my professional development by teaching me about the airline industry, and I'm helping theirs by teaching them about instructional design. This information is then being disseminated into the business units as we take what we have learned and share with our SMEs.

Is VPD the new term for 'mentoring', or do others see them as distinct activities?

Sharon

In reply to Sharon Porterfield

Re: Examples of VPD

by Heather Ross -
It's interesting that mentoring, at leas the way you describe, is a two-way street. You learn from each other as opposed to it being in a single direction.

I believe it was Lao Tzu who said something along the lines of if you learn something and never pass that knowledge on to others than the knowledge you gained was waisted.

I think that any learning that involves learning from others (F2F or some method of distance communication) that doesn't involve formal workshops, classes or conferences can probably be considered VPD (Jennifer, correct me if I'm wrong).
In reply to Heather Ross

Re: Examples of VPD

by Jennifer Jones -
I think the key to identifying actual VPD is that it spreads outward, not just linearly. But, it's a made-up term, so anything goes, right?
In reply to Heather Ross

Re: Examples of VPD

by Jo Ann Hammond-Meiers -
Hi Deirdere and Heather and all,
Interesting topic to me -- for sure. I feel so lucky when I find someone who shares know how or ideas with me when I can apply them and then, pass them on to others. I like your examples Heather. One of my friends Louanne, has already benefited from Deirdere passing something to her via yours truly.Thanks Deirdere.

One the things I find is that I have to learn how to categorize and then discern constantly -- whether to pursue a lead -- or not. Some leads seem to go no where -- but one never knows. I also know that I'm getting more aware of choosing more time for online learning -- not just for working online; partly because I have so much more to learn. With all of the new technologies, how do we best use them -- that is the ongoing question I'm researching now.
Jo Ann




In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Examples of VPD

by Nik Peachey -
Hi Deirdre,

I've just been spending a lot of time preparing tutorial videos for wetpaint

I've put them on my YouTube channel at: http://youtube.com/NikPeachey

Please feel free to use them.

There are also some postings about using wetpaint on my blog, but I'm not sure how relevant they will be for your context.

Best
Nik Peachey
http://nikpeachey.blogspot.com/
In reply to Nik Peachey

Re: Examples of VPD

by Jo Ann Hammond-Meiers -
Hi Nik Peachey,
I like your instructions and your sites. they are good examples for me and encourage me to learn and teach as you model. Thanks for sharing these. Jo Ann
In reply to Jo Ann Hammond-Meiers

Re: Examples of VPD

by Nik Peachey -
Thanks Jo,

I hope the wiki's I've set up actually get off the ground. I'm wondering what it is that makes these successful. It's early days yet, but I feel a bit as though they are still too much 'my wikis' it's hard to get people to feel that they share ownership. Having the same problem with a Ning network that I've created for some trainers. It's hard to know how to make them feel that they own the space.

Thanks anyway for the encouragement.

Best
Nik Peachey
http://nikpeachey.blogspot.com/
http://quickshout.blogspot.com/
In reply to Nik Peachey

Re: Examples of VPD

by Jo Ann Hammond-Meiers -
Hi Nik,
I see that many people have joined -- but how do people get more involved. In the courses I either take and teach -- people vary a lot in their comfort levels.
I suppose you can tell them a lot that the space is their space -- modeling other people works for me, at first, and then, I find my own style and develop beyond -- if creative energy is there. Jo Ann
In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Examples of VPD

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -

Folks, I feel like the kid in the candy store because I love WetPaint wikis. They have a to-do-list, a profile page, discussion threads on every page, a calendar, photo galleries and widget capabilities. It does have a moderately ok editor which is better than the not reasonable editor I've dealt with on other wikis. Here is my newest site that I'm hoping will generate lots of material at the conference:

 http://distributedmedicaleducation.wetpaint.com/

In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Examples of VPD

by Heather Ross -
Deirdre, did you know that if you contact the folks at Wetpaint and let them know that your wiki is for working with students (of any age) they will remove the ads.
In reply to Heather Ross

Re: Examples of VPD

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
Yes I had ads removed for the other wiki, but they haven't gotten back to me yet about this one.
In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Examples of VPD

by Jennifer Jones -
Do you have any hesitation with them because you can't post hot links in the discussions? I had an instructor decide to use SharePoint over Wet Paint because of that issue.
In reply to Jennifer Jones

Re: Examples of VPD

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
Hmm! I don't know, its something I hadn't thought about. I saw the discussion tool as more for commenting but...
In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Examples of VPD

by Nik Peachey -
Hi Deirdre,

Did you try pbWiki before WetPaint? I'd be interested to know how they compare. I did start to set up a pbwiki, then got hooked on wetpaint

Best

nik
In reply to Nik Peachey

Re: Examples of VPD

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
Yes I've had a pbwiki and a media wiki for a couple of years. As I mentioned, I like the extras in WetPaint.
In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Examples of VPD

by Jennifer Jones -
This group is an excellent example of VPD!
My most recent example involved the Flip cameras. I blogged about it here. Since I made that blog post, another instructor tested the camera, wrote an lengthy review and passed it on to his Dean. That dean passed it on to another dean who passed it to more instructors. It's almost out of control. I tried to go buy a camera today and the local Best Buy was sold out.
In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Examples of VPD

by Jeffrey Keefer -

While some people here are speaking about VPD, I am wondering about the resources we have right here. Many of us have similar professional and personal interests, and as such it smells like (to use a different metaphor than the "it looks like" that I normally use) a community of practice or VPD grouping right here.

I suppose with all of us reading these posts and the resources we have / use with others, I am wondering if there is a simpler way of capturing this than we are doing right now.

For example, when I find somebody with something interesting, I tend to then subscribe to the blog rss or Twitter feed (which I have done to and with a number of you here), though this can be a tedious process. 

I recently participated in the Connected Futures workshop through CPSquare, and this same issue came up there without a fully satisfying solution.

Jeffrey
http://silenceandvoice.com/
http://twitter.com/JeffreyKeefer

In reply to Jeffrey Keefer

Re: Examples of VPD

by Heather Ross -
Yes Jeff. As Jennifer pointed out, this community is a great example of VPD.

I think that there are also several blogs out there where the "owner" will post something and several people post responses that include suggested resources (much as people do on SCoPE).

I think that we're all surrounded by VPD, but just haven't realized it.


In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Examples of VPD

by Geoff Cain -
Here is my example of VPD today. I have been asked this question by only one other instructor before but I love this question. I was asked to come over to the Gig Harbor campus of TCC to work with some teachers on Blackboard. There were only a couple of us so I threw away the agenda and asked "what do you need to know?" and we went from there. When we were done, one of them asked "what don't I already know that would be cool for me to know about?" that is the exact words. The previous instructor said "cool tool" or something like that. But there was a thirst to be involved, a real curiosity about what people were doing and how technology was solving problems. This instructor asked me to come over and made sure that others were there too. They are passing on what they learned to others there. We had the time and pace so they could learn a lot on their own and they did.
In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Examples of VPD

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
Greetings from Thunder Bay, Ontario! I'm on a travelling conference that started in Sudbury, then spent two days travelling by bus to Thunder Bay, stopping off to visit exempary medical clinics along the way. If that concept isn't viral enough, imagine thirty people from every continent who get on a bus at 6:00AM and play musical chairs until 10PM for two days. Imagine the intensity of the conversations. Imagine all the cards being exchanged. Imagine stopping at small communities for lunch and dinner with the mayor or chief and other community members. This is the best conference ever!