Twitter graphic from Spoon Graphics
As you all know, Twitter is #1 on the Top 100 Tools for Learning list this year for the second year running.
Those who voted it into the top spot, know how important and valuable it has become for them. Others, who haven't yet tried Twitter, often show their surprise that a tool which they often consider "trivial" can be of any use for "learning".
I've written a lot about Twitter as well as talked to many people about it - whether it be in small corporate workshops or in conference presentations. One of the ways that I try to explain its value is to show how it is a great place to build a PLN - Personal Learning Network. However, this does not always hit the right spot, as it can take a bit of time to explain what a PLN is. So recently, I've been talking more about Twitter as "a professional development tool", and I now see more more people showing interest.
I often start by talking about my own professional developmemt using Twitter, ie by connecting with like-minded learning professionals worldwide, and how I have learnt so much about what is happening in the learning industry and how it is evolving. Keeping in daily contect with those, whose opinions and ideas I value, is now enormously important for me - both professionally and personally - as is participating in the weekly, synchronous live chat session, lrnchat, as well as getting involved in Twitter backchannels at conferences and other events.
I also go so far to say that without Twitter I probably wouldn't be able to do my job as effectively as I do nowadays, which includes advising organisations on the way that learning (and in particular workplace learning) is changing. And furthermore that although I continue to read blog postings about what is happening in Learning & Development, my RSS reader - where I aggregate and manage my RSS feeds, this activity is now taking 2nd place to my use of Twitter.
Of course, there are many others who understand the value of Twitter as a professional development tool. In a previous blog posting I mentioned a schoolteacher who felt that Twitter had not only increased her desire for and pursuit of professional development, but also had improved her self-confidence and attitude (See What Twitter has done for me)
And here are a few other articles I have found too:
- 5 reasons I use Twitter (and you should too), Molehills out of mountains, 27 November 2010
- Using Twitter as a professional development tool, Sarah Fischler, 10 March 2010
- Twitteracy: Twitter as professional development tool, TannerVision, 13 October 2009
- Can Twitter help your professional development, T J Belt, Simple Talk, 16 December 2008
- Twittering, not frittering: professional development in 140 characters, Suzie Boss, Edutopia, 13 August 2008
Do you view Twitter as a professional development tool? If so, do please leave a comment below on how it is helping you, or else share a link to a resource where others have shared their experiences.
[And if you are looking for more information on how Twitter can help YOUR professional development, take a look at my online Guide, How to use Twitter for Social Learning]