I saw Chris' post about informal PD in the "welcome" thread and thought it could use a hoist up to a new discussion topic.
One of the trends I'm noticing in faculty development is self-directed, on-line PD....it's very much grass roots, very much informal. The PD is acknowledged, but there's not formal organization or additional support from Faculty Development. I may be answering my own question here, but it seems to me that a PD collaboratory is part of formal faculty development....it's happening in some places, so what is it about those institutions that encourages faculty to venture into the arena of non-traditional PD ?
It brings us to the question of what types of PD are we talking about for a PD Collaboratory? Formal only?
A couple months ago we had a seminar discussion here in SCoPE called Viral Professional Development
. Here is the definition of VPD by the facilitators, Heather Ross and Jennifer Jones:
Viral Professional Development (VPD) occurs when informal learning spreads through the organization and beyond, like a virus. VPD promotes celebration of individual learning and provides support for sharing knowledge informally and on-demand. VPD is an organic concept that is currently being explored internationally and recognized as a valid professional development opportunity. There are no set rules for implementing VPD, but the heart of the concept is in the development of an active learning community.
I think this is along the same lines as Jeffrey's comment
...seeing some of the same faces in a number of these opportunities ...helps to bring the theory into practice and the practice back into the events themselves.
In this way, It almost adds a meta-professional development capacity.
How do we provide support for the individuals using the PD Collaboratory? Will an attraction to the site be the networking and seeing the same faces?