Monday, October 15, 2012

Power of We

Today is Blog Action Day 2012, and the topic is "Power of We".

From my perspective, the "power of we" lies in the learning network the (online) academic community has offered me. Today is the right moment to reflect on how I have benefited and continue to benefit from this community.

1. Research skills

I have written this before, and it's not the last time that I'll mention it: I've learned so much from participating in (or catching up afterwards) online chats on research skills (#phdchat, #ecrchat, #acwri) and by reading blogs.

2. Exchanging ideas

Online learning networks are a perfect playground to test out ideas, and exchange ideas to see in which way your story can be best told. 

3. Learning about your field

I enjoy very much reading news from the construction industry and from concrete manufacturers and research institutes. Most of the time their work is not related to my research at all, but it is interesting to learn more about the broader field by reading articles online.

4. Learning about higher education

The internet and online learning communities are again a perfect place to learn about higher education practices and policies throughout the entire world.

5. Follow events you can't attend

From webinars and podcasts to liveblogs and Twitter streams: there typically are plenty of possibilities to follow an event online you can't attend physically. 

6. Connecting with like-minded people over the disciplines

Another great learning experience has been to connect with like-minded researchers from completely different disciplines and to understand how similar their experiences are and how much I can learn from that.

And today, I not only want to focus on the benefits of my online learning network, but I also want to give a shout-out and a massive thank you to everyone from whom I've learned - deeply appreciated!

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