Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Professional Development for the 21st Century

Just yesterday I connected with my friend and colleague Karen Janowski, an Assistive Technology Consultant in the Boston Area over Skype and we spent the next hour or so catching up and sharing ideas and showing each other new applications. Using Skype we were able to speak with one another and then we connected using Yuuguu a screen sharing application that allowed us to see each others computer screen. Yuuguu was just updated so that the individual on the other end can now access your screen via the internet. Yuuguu is great for ad hoc meetings when you want to share an application with another individual or for that matter a group. You simply give the participants a URL and a PIN number and within seconds they can see your computer screen (do remember to do some tiding up:-) ). Participants can also request control of the presenters screen as well which is fantastic for training purposes.

More importantly as I was reflecting on our interchange it occurred to me that more educators need to seek out these rich Web 2.0 tools so that they can dialog and direct their own professional development. I know for myself, that having access to professionals like Karen that I can connect with on a regular basis really improves and hones my skills and the exchange of ideas is amazing. So when you are considering your own professional development see how you can craft it using the tools I mentioned, Skype & Yuuguu. Educators and other professionals need to look for new models of professional development for the 21st Century and the web is the way to go. Let me know how you are using Web 2.0 tools to expand your professional development.

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