Supporting Continuing Professional Development through Technology Enhanced Collaborative Learning

R. Harris (UK)


Knowledge Transfer, Collaborative Learning Environment, Virtual Learning Environment (VLE), E learning, Continuing Professional Development (CPD),


Increasingly managers are engaging with Continuing Professional Development (CPD) as a commitment to lifelong learning in recognition of a greater expectation that professionals be technically competent and managerially capable. In today’s knowledge intensive world, sustainable competitive advantage can be gained through the ability to learn faster than the competition. . However, it should be acknowledged that the value of knowledge transfer erodes over time. It has been suggested that knowledge gained through an undergraduate degree has an average life of four years before it requires updating. Firms that engage with CPD are more likely to thrive. However, an obstacle to their development is often an inability to effectively engage with knowledge transfer, although the availability of Virtual Learning Environments (VLEs) has increased the potential for widening business support. However, Universities tend to restrict the use of VLE’s to internal users, which can stifle opportunities for collaboration. The solution for effective delivery of CPD to managers and professionals may be to mesh the power of the VLE with physical support/mentoring within an open source based collaborative learning framework. This paper examines the development of a pilot Collaborative Learning Environment, designed to support CPD and encourage enterprise and innovation within small businesses.

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