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After my “conference rally” (two in a row just before your holiday is quite challenging) in Poland and Germany I managed to squeeze in a short visit to Linz. I am one of the coordinators of PSST (Personal & Shared Strategies for Teachers in Web 2.0) intensive program and we run this for the second time.

Despite of my short visit, it was a pleasure to be part of the intensive program. I met some nice and interesting people from Croatia, some old colleagues from Romania and a bunch of active participants from Latvia, Romania, Croatia, Slovenia and Estonia. By the time I got there they had created a nice and creative atmosphere, full of interest and motivation to learn something new.

The idea of this intensive program is to bring together people from different countries who are interested in educational technology and its implementation possibilities into teaching and learning. Our participants are mainly students who are in the middle of teacher training programs in their countries. Some of them also work as teachers already. Such a program allows to share experiences, success and failures, introduce new technological solutions and innovative pedagogical approaches, practice giving presentations and formulating arguments.

Due to my recent participation in the PLE2013 conference I decided to introduce the concept of PLE (personal learning environment) and BYOD (bring your own device). We discussed about the potential challenges and benefits of BYOD in primary and secondary education. I tried to encourage people to think about the questions such as: Are technologies merely tools that human beings use? How has “technology” changed the ways in which we know, learn, and communicate? What kind of role technology plays in education? I ended my presentation with the claim (unfortunately I haven’t figured out yet who is the exact author of this, but I stumbled across a photo on Flickr):

“In the same way that music is not in the piano…learning is not in the device”

for some food for thought.

By the way, it is already decided that this intensive program will take place also next year.

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PSST (Personal & Shared Strategies for Teachers in Web 2.0) intensive program is looking for participants.

Where: Linz, Austria

When: 07.07.2013 – 21.07.2013

Why: to share your ideas and experiences regarding Web2.0 and social media use in education, learning and teaching; to learn with experts and other participants about how to implement and exploit various technological solutions and strategies for learning and teaching purposes; to find new friends; to get to know new cultures, people and countries; to have fun; to go sightseeing

For whom: For students ((bachelor and master level) in the field of teacher training (any subject matter), educational technology or anybody else, who is interested in Web2.0 in education and training. Only first 6 students will be accepted from Estonia. Even if you are going to graduate this spring you are welcome to participate!

Participants: In addition to Estonians, there will be students from Slovenia, Austria, Latvia, Romania, Croatia (total 36) and a panel of international experts.

Costs: Travel costs; accommodation (double room shared with another student), some meals will be covered.

Working language: English

Website: http://psst.cc/ (currently the website is work in progress and is not yet updated, but you can see last year’s event)

Accommodation: Julius Raab Heim student housing

Contact and registration: Dr. Terje Väljataga (institute of Informatics, Centre for Educational Technology), terjev[at]tlu.ee

If you got interested and need more information about the intensive program, do not hesitate to contact me immediately.

See you in Linz!

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