PLN Plus – be the change you want to see

Kelly Gardiner, Online Learning Manager at the State Library of Victoria, is a well-known voice in the VicPLN community, particularly in relation to professional learning for educators and librarians. This post introduces the guiding questions that underpin the new PLN+ course, beginning on the 11th March.

We’ve been wondering: what’s the next logical step for people who’ve done the VicPLN course?

Last year, we found out. With support from AITSL, we carried out some research into impacts of the VicPLN courses. Many of you participated in that. The thing is that a startling number of people report that the course changes their practice. And once that’s happened, what do they do?

They – you  – start to enact whatever changes seem most needed in your immediate world or beyond. It might be changes to the way you do your work, the way you collaborate with colleagues, the interactions with students, simple process or system fixes, big initiatives.

It’s about leading change.

Now, we’re not all Joan of Arc.

But it seemed clear to us that after the initial PLN courses, people then need the skills, tools and resources to enable them to enact the kinds of change they want to see – in their workplace, in their classroom or library, in the wider school community, in professional networks, in disciplines, or the broader systems and structures.

How do you become an advocate for literacy or simply for more resources? How do you collaborate to create new professional networks or share ideas or raise funds? How do you involve the wider community in learning? How do you create programs that pass on what you’ve learned to students?

How do you define what you want to do, attract support, design and manage projects?

How do you keep on learning, when you have so much to do already?

And what does that mean about our VicPLN network – what do you need from it now?

We can’t promise to answer all of those huge questions in a few weeks. But let’s make a start, shall we?

If you’d like to take part in the course (and maybe change the world just a bit) you can find out more here or email  to book a place.

PLN registrations are now open

Registrations are now open for the next round of the Personal Learning Network, an online course run by the State Library of Victoria and SLAV. The course is the perfect introduction for teachers or school library staff looking to connect with other educators and discover some great free teaching & learning tools.
Computer Toddler
The PLN is delivered entirely online, meaning that participants can work through the course materials at any time. Over seven units you will explore tools to help you stay organised, discover useful resources, and explore issues like digital citizenship. You’ll also get started with blogging and learn about the range of free professional learning resources available online. Weekly webinars will also give you the chance to meet other participants and explore the themes of the course in more depth. The course is $115 ($105 for SLAV members) and commences on March 12. You can find more information or book online here.

The PLN is now in its fourth year, and this year marks a new and exciting time with the shortening of the PLN course and the introduction of several short courses. Alongside the PLN course there will also be an Advanced PLN running over four units in July, and the Research Toolkit will return in October 2013. We’ll keep you posted about these courses here on Bright Ideas, but if you’d like to register your interest in any of these courses then email

For details of how to stay up to date with all of the news from the course and to connect with the #vicpln community make sure you have a look at our PLN page. We look forward to seeing you in the course and online.