Learning Pathways

LD4PE stands in sharp contrast to other projects in not prescribing a single curricular point of view but in providing instead the means for instructors and learners to chart multiple, diverse pathways for learning—pathways defined as public or private, individual or collective, prescribed or exploratory. Each named graph provides a different roadmap for discovering and traversing lesson plans, how-to recipes, webinars, and tutorials that have been described and aligned to the competency nodes of the Index graph. The diverse set of project partners has been carefully chosen to ensure that a wide variety of learning and instructional perspectives will be served through the structure and content of the Index, and is a strength of this proposed project

While the Index defines a set of competencies, it neither prescribes any competencies as “core” nor defines a logical sequencing of its components. In other words, the Index does not in itself define a curriculum by describing a single learning trajectory or pathway through the set of competencies expressed as Index graph nodes. The LD4PE project will develop functionality through WordPress that enables teachers, trainers, and learners to map their own pathways through the Index graph. These pathways can be expressed and saved as named graphs that traverse, or overlay, the competency nodes of the Index.

The named graphs for learning pathways may be identified as formal curriculum structures or as personalized pathways created by instructors or learners as records of progress. They may also function as suggested paths forward in the learning process or as guides to other instructors or learners in creating their own pathways. When published, such named graphs will be usable by others to explore learning resources, just as shared playlists support exploration of music. Personal named graphs, and their accompanying competency nodes, may also serve as bases for awarding digital badges and other evidence of accomplishment that are emerging as important markers in modern online learning environments. The following figure illustrates the development of three distinct pathways mapped over a the competencies of a framework:


In essence, each node in a competency framework is a first class citizen of the web with 1-to-n individual pathways knitting together their own sequence.


Nothing precludes the learner or teacher/trainer from having a journey that spans the competencies in more than one framwork. For example, in the following figure, the red nodes might be competencies from the Index under development here while the blue nodes are drawn from the technical sections of WebJunction’s Competency Index for the Library Field.


Learning pathways as ‘transit maps’


Companions at the ‘station stop’



@@@two more companions…