Using networking to create your research team

February 29, 2008

Dean Shareski presented in our EC&I 831 grad class on Feb 26 about building a research team through our network. I immensely enjoyed his presentation, as it really clarified what it is that I have been trying to do over the past couple of weeks in particular. I have been struggling a little bit in this class because I am no longer in the education field (though still love the profession and would be back in it if I could just teach without all of the politics and discipline issues). Finding an audience for what I am now passionate about, human resources, and understanding what my classmates are discussing during our class meetings and in their blogs is more challenging than I would have imagined. So I set the task for myself of trying to expand my network. I am now following a lot of blogs and started using Twitter more. I also branched out to try to find people in human resources in addition to the wonderful educators that I have networked with. After our class with Dean and then our class on the 27th where we discussed where everyone in the class was at, I really felt similar to Todd – that I am not alone and really looking at “who is in my network” (similar to what I felt after Sharon Peters’ presentation -see post).

Many of the subjects that Dean spoke to really meant something for me. Above all, I really think that his Big 5 Ideas are important enough for me to tack up beside my computer and remember every time I log-on.
1. Get personal and selfish (do something for yourself first and then worry about how you can use it professionally)
2. Professional Learning Community on steroids (network takes it to a new level)
3. Consider your commpost rating (ratio between commenting and posting to blogs – this one made me think – I read everyone elses and post to mine, but probably do not have a healthy ratio – something to work on that will help me build my community and my RSS feed’s value – see Ryan’s post)
4. Have fun (no problem there -technology and meeting/chatting with people is ALWAYS fun!! Love it)
5. share everything – (our blogs don’t have to be perfect, just share! I like this one because I am always thinking it should be earth shattering information I am typing out – not necessarily)

I think all of this boils down to the quote in Walter’s blog: “work smarter, not harder” and Alec’s quote during the presentation: “Faced with information overload, we have no alternative but pattern-recognition”. Why not use the network around us?

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One Response to “Using networking to create your research team”


  1. I was fortunate to hear Dean present twice on Tuesday. I like that he thinks about teachers and students alike and how technology will benefit all of us.


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