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Which clippings match 'Gardner Campbell' keyword pg.1 of 1
09 MARCH 2014

Gardner Campbell: A Personal Cyberinfrastructure

"So, how might colleges and universities shape curricula to support and inspire the imaginations that students need? Here's one idea. Suppose that when students matriculate, they are assigned their own web servers – not 1GB folders in the institution's web space but honest–to–goodness virtualized web servers of the kind available for $7.99 a month from a variety of hosting services, with built–in affordances ranging from database maintenance to web analytics. As part of the first–year orientation, each student would pick a domain name. Over the course of the first year, in a set of lab seminars facilitated by instructional technologists, librarians, and faculty advisors from across the curriculum, students would build out their digital presences in an environment made of the medium of the web itself. They would experiment with server management tools via graphical user interfaces such as cPanel or other commodity equivalents. They would install scripts with one–click installers such as SimpleScripts. They would play with wikis and blogs; they would tinker and begin to assemble a platform to support their publishing, their archiving, their importing and exporting, their internal and external information connections. They would become, in myriad small but important ways, system administrators for their own digital lives.[3] In short, students would build a personal cyberinfrastructure, one they would continue to modify and extend throughout their college career – and beyond.

In building that personal cyberinfrastructure, students not only would acquire crucial technical skills for their digital lives but also would engage in work that provides richly teachable moments ranging from multimodal writing to information science, knowledge management, bibliographic instruction, and social networking. Fascinating and important innovations would emerge as students are able to shape their own cognition, learning, expression, and reflection in a digital age, in a digital medium. Students would frame, curate, share, and direct their own "engagement streams" throughout the learning environment.[4] Like Doug Engelbart's bootstrappers in the Augmentation Research Center, these students would study the design and function of their digital environments, share their findings, and develop the tools for even richer and more effective metacognition, all within a medium that provides the most flexible and extensible environment for creativity and expression that human beings have ever built."

(Gardner Campbell, 4 September 2009)

Gardner Campbell, "A Personal Cyberinfrastructure," EDUCAUSE Review, vol. 44, no. 5 (September/October 2009), pp. 58–59.

[3] Jim Groom has outlined several key parts of this vision: "A Domain of One's Own," bavatuesdays, November 29, 2008, .

[4] W. Gardner Campbell and Robert F. German Jr., "The Map Is the Territory: Course 'Engagement Streams' as Catalysts for Deep Learning," EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative (ELI) Annual Meeting, January 21, 2009, podcast at "



2009A Domain of Ones Own (project) • a personal cyber infrastructure • agency of access and engagement • assemble a platform • Augmentation Research Center at SRI • bootstrapper • connectivism • cPanel • cyberinfrastructure • Dave Winerdigital environmentsdigital livesdigital medium • digital presence • Douglas Engelbarte-learning 2.0education innovationEducause Quarterlyengagement streams • external information connections • flexible and extensible environment • Gardner Campbell • information connections • information science • infrastructureinstitutional network • internal information connections • Jim Groomknowledge managementlearning technology • matriculate • metacognitionmultimodal scholarship • multimodal writing • personal cyber infrastructurepersonal expressionPersonal Learning Environment • richly teachable moments • Robert German • server management • shape your own cognition • share your findings • SimpleScripts • skillful practice • skills acquisition • social networkingtechnology affordancesthinking toolstinkertinkerer • Virginia Tech • web server • web server space • web space


Simon Perkins
26 DECEMBER 2010

Envisioning the Post-LMS Era: The Open Learning Network

"Institutions, teachers, and learners are increasingly turning to the open architecture and customizability of the web. In doing so, they are leveraging the tools and resources of the larger PLE to create their own personal learning networks (PLNs) to manage information, create content, and connect with others. Whether termed PLEs or PLNs, these approaches 'represent a shift away from the model in which students consume information through independent channels such as the library, a textbook, or an LMS, moving instead to a model where students draw connections from a growing matrix of resources that they select and organize.' Scott Leslie's impressive collection of PLE diagrams reminds us that PLNs are infinitely configurable to meet individual needs and preferences. They are, after all, 'personal.'

The vision of individually constructed PLNs and their potential to transform learning extends beyond merely aggregating and using a smorgasbord of web–based tools and content. Gardner Campbell advocated the cultivation of 'personal cyberinfrastructures' that teachers and learners can leverage to become the 'system administrators of their own digital lives.' Instead of implementing tools that simply help instructors 'manage learning,' Campbell argued that we should embrace technologies that enable co–learners to frame, curate, share, and direct learning 'engagement streams.' John Seely Brown and Richard Adler argued that learning with Web 2.0 tools is so different that we ought to call it 'learning 2.0.' They asserted that, unlike old passive forms of learning, the new learner–centric paradigm (facilitated and reinforced by new tools) emphasizes participation over presentation, encourages focused conversation over traditional publication, and 'facilitates innovative explorations, experimentations, and purposeful tinkerings that often form the basis of a situated understanding emerging from action, not passivity.' The net result is an 'open participatory learning ecosystem.'"

(Jonathan Mott, 2010)

Mott, J. (2010). 'Envisioning the Post–LMS Era: The Open Learning Network.' Educause Quarterly 33(1).

Fig.1 Vahid Masrour 'synthetic view of what a PLN/E is, and what it enables'.
Fig.2 Scott Leslie 'collection of PLE diagrams'.



Simon Perkins

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