Online seminar about communities and learning

The aim of this online seminar is to increase awareness and improve understanding of online communities, social networks and learning. It is open to everyone interested in online communities and learning. It is free of charge. The seminar will be built around structured discussion and the sharing of experience between participants with a number of texts and tasks to stimulate thought and exchange. The seminar is organised in conjunction with the ICT and education committee of the Swiss Academy for Science and Technology (SATW).


February 14th – March 27th, 2011


Details of the seminar are accessible to everyone, but to participate you will need to register on L4D platform which hosts the seminar. It is easy to do (register and then confirm your email address). Registering for the platform involves no obligations. Once you have registered, click on ‘Communities seminar’ in the menu at the top of the page. And then click ‘join’ on the seminar page to indicate you want to take part in the seminar. Each week the next module will become available.


The seminar is made up of six modules each lasting a week:

1. Online communities and social networks

2. Tools for communication and learning

3. Ways of working in online communities

4. The use of language online

5. Participation – the challenge of communities

6. Learning, change and innovation in the online context.


The working languages of the seminar will be English, French and German. You will need to understand English and either French or German to participate, preferably both. Your contributions can be in any of the three languages.

Participation and workload

Participants are expected to actively take part in the tasks and discussions proposed. Remember, the more you put into the seminar, the more you are likely to get out of it. Participation will involve reading several short texts (in English) each week, trying out a limited number of tools available on the platform (an open source platform called ELGG), sharing experience about online activities, and taking part in one or two proposed activities each week, including drawing up and discussing an initial list of potential issues about ICT and education in Switzerland that will be subsequently discussed at a meeting in Münchenwiler (April 1st-2nd).