What is a Personal Learning Environment?
Definitions for Personal Learning Environments (PLEs) differ. Some have suggested that the principles of PLEs can be presented in a software tool (see Plex, for example), while others suggest it to be more of a concept than a particular tool. The differing viewpoints of PLEs are reflective of infancy of the concept, and the practical applications of the read/write web itself.
It’s the connections that make a PLE. Numerous other factors play a role: content creation tools, content storage, tools for communication, protocols/APIs, and identity management.
A few definitions:
“A Personal Learning Environment (PLE) is a collection of free, distributed, web-based tools, usually centred around a blog, linked together and aggregating content using RSS feeds and simple HTML scripts.” http://seanfitz.wikispaces.com/creatingyourple
“a Personal Learning Environment is a facility for an individual to access, aggregate, configure and manipulate digital artefacts of their ongoing learning experiences.” http://members.optusnet.com.au/rlubensky/2006/12/present-and-future-of-personal-learning.html
“Essentially, they are a collection of tools, brought together under the conceptual notion of openness, interoperability, and learner control.” http://www.elearnspace.org/blog/archives/002884.html
PLEs: http://blog.simslearningconnections.com/?p=50 – “PLE are very personal both in the sense of being independent of the university or employer and in the sense of being hand-crafted — although a bit necessarily too hand-crafted today. Even with a more ideal integrative application, PLE will still be highly customized to the needs and preferences of the learner. Portions of even the software application PLE will be kept behind our personal firewall. Learning is deeply personal, AND social.”
vía Ple – LTCWiki.