Frequently asked Questions

 
 

What is the Learning Commons?

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The Learning Commons is a free and open site where educators can search for resources provided by different learning content providers, educational research institutions, professional development organizations, and school districts to find the professional learning support they need to implement innovative approaches to teaching, including blended and personalized learning, in their classrooms.

Teachers, designers, and leaders of learning can discover curated content playlists, self-paced competency development tracking, and community-vetted resources. Resources can be saved and shared through personalized content playlists.


HOW DOES IT WORK?

The Learning Commons is populated by relevant professional learning content curated by nearly a dozen (with more joining) innovative education organizations. Users can immediately engage with the materials or organize and save them in a playlist. Visitors can search by topic or keyword based on their professional learning needs, and users can find, create, and share playlists, offer feedback on content, and track self-paced progress as they build skills and competencies.


Who should use the learning commons?

The Learning Commons is a shared space where:

  • Educators can search across curated professional learning resources to solve challenges and transform their classrooms.

  • Resource providers can contribute content, tools, and ideas to support learners while getting real-time feedback on value and impact.

  • Learning leaders can connect to groups of learners and share resources based on personalized, competency-based learning goals.


Do I have to sign up?

Anyone can visit the Learning Commons and access the professional learning content as an anonymous user. If you would like to save content into playlists, share playlists with others, or join learning networks, you will be invited to create an account, which you easily can do using your existing Google, Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter account information.


What are the Learning Commons’ privacy standards?

Anyone can visit the Learning Commons as an anonymous user. If you choose to create an account with the Learning Commons, you can conveniently use your existing Google, Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter account to sign up. The Learning Commons adheres to the highest education technology data privacy standards and at no time will sell or share your personal information. Read our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy here.


Is content on the Learning Commons free to use?

Yes, there is no charge to use the Learning Commons and engage with the professional learning content provided.


How can I recommend content to be added to the Learning Commons?

Resources added to the Learning Commons are vetted through this rubric, ensuring we only share free professional learning resources supporting innovative teaching and learning practices. To suggest a resource, submit a request here. If your organization has a comprehensive set of resources and would like to inquire about becoming a partner organization, send an email to hello@learning-commons.org.


How can I create a playlist? Or a network?

Any user with an account can create or copy a playlist (learn more here). Any user can also join a network; if you're interested in creating and leading a network, reach out to hello@learning-commons.org.


Who is involved in the Learning Commons?

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The Learning Commons was created by The Learning Accelerator and Yet Analytics, and supported by partnerships with other innovative education organizations, including (partial list):

During the initial public beta, content in the Learning Commons will be sourced from these partner organizations. As the Learning Commons community grows, more content partners will be added to further expand the professional learning resources available to educators.


Where did the idea of the Learning Commons originate?

Over the past few years, The Learning Accelerator has been working with a select group of human capital organizations to design, develop, and launch a series of critical supports for teachers and leaders making the shift to blended and personalized learning. This initiative has resulted in a series of new open tools, frameworks, and learning content for educators. One of our key learnings through this work is that new models for adult learning must reflect the level of personalization, competency-based learning, and effective use of data that we are asking educators to implement in their classrooms.

To accomplish this, we need to create a common language and frame to help users identify resources and learn across organizations and platforms, making it possible for content to be more accessible to educators at all levels as well as allow educators to more effectively own and track their learning. Content and data must be made more interoperable. In January 2015, TLA and our grantees partnered with Yet Analytics to launch a new project to help solve exactly this problem, seeking to map the open content created by Initiative grantees, connect them to a shared competency-based framework using a data interoperability specification, and explore how this concept model could be used as an open standard for professional training and development. The Learning Commons is the result of this collaborative project between TLA and Yet Analytics, in partnership with other innovative education organizations. (Learn more about this collaboration.)


Have more questions?

We’re happy to hear from you. Contact us here: hello@learning-commons.org.