‘What is a Community of Practice?’
A Community of Practice, hereafter CoP, is essentially a community of people who share similar passions and wish to learn and unravel new concepts and understandings about these areas of interest. This is effectively achieved through ongoing interaction and collaboration through various mediums (online PLNs such as this one is a great start). It is really important to look at the term ‘Communities of Practice’ as it reads, noticing that it requires ‘practice’. By practice, I mean a conscious and active effort to acquire and share new knowledge (Smith, 2009). This doesn’t mean gossiping about what happened last weekend through a Facebook group thread, but rather refers to the development of a shared repertoire of rich resources (i.e. life experiences, strategies to solve reoccurring problems, stories, tools, new ideas) to effectively quench a community’s thirst for knowledge (Smith, 2009).
Smith. M. (2009). Communities of practice. Retrieved from http://www.infed.org/biblio/communities_of_practice.htm