The Peeragogy Handbook.

How to Use this Handbook.

Working together is how things get done. This free, open, crowd-sourced wiki-book shows us the best ways to get there. I’m glad I was on the team that created it.

Intro: If you want to learn how to fix a pipe, solve a partial differential equation, write software, you are seconds away from know-how via YouTube, Wikipedia and search engines. Access to technology and access to knowledge, however, isn’t enough. Learning is a social, active, and ongoing process. What does a motivated group of self-learners need to know to agree on a subject or skill, find and qualify the best learning resources about that topic, select and use appropriate communication media to co-learn it? In particular, what do they need to know about peer learning?

A problem with this video is that it makes it look like Howard Rheingold was calling the shots all along, and that is not the case. If anything, Howard worked hard to hand things off to others. That’s part of the concept: a play within a play. We use Peeragogy to promote Peeragogy.

(notes and pics of howard, well days)

From Peer Learning to “Peeragogy”

“The idea that we needed a new theory arose out of the challenges we faced doing peer learning. Specifically, we were particularly interested in the conditions that were required for volunteer contributors to drive an learning-focused organization’s agenda, and improve things for participating learners and teachers. How could the organization itself “learn” and grow, while participants were also learning and becoming better contributors?”

As this idea took form, we reflected more on how learning and organizations work. Just like it would be rare for a business to be successful if it does not take into account the needs and interests of its clients, it is unlikely for a learning project to be successful if the act of learning is not somehow relevant for the people doing it.

So, paragogy became a set of proposed principles for understanding learning (and working) together. In particular, we focused on the way in which co-learners shape their learning context together. Paragogy is not a recipe: its ideas can grow and change to suit the needs of the moment; as it has matured, it has become more of an “approach” than it is a set of set-in-stone principles.

The Workscape, a learning platform for corporations

(My main contribution.)


Peeragogy. In this essay from DMLCentral, Howard develops in detail one of the core concepts encapsulated in The Infotention Network’s learning approach.