Magazine article Talent Development
Jane Hart: Principal and Director of Collaboration Internet Time Alliance Bath, United Kingdom
An independent consultant, speaker, and writer, Jane Hart is an internationally known specialist in the use of social media for learning and working. She is principal and director of collaboration of the Internet Time Alliance, a think tank of leading practitioners who help organizations exploit emerging practices to work smarter. Hart also is the founder of the Centre for Learning & Performance Technologies (C4LPT), a free resource site on the use of technologies for learning and performance, which has become one of the world's most visited websites about learning, with more than 100,000 visits per month.
A prolific blogger, for many years Hart has posted a daily learning resource on the popular Jane's Pick of the Day, and she posts regularly on her Learning in the Social Workplace blog. She holds a master's degree in information systems and technology from the City University in London, United Kingdom.
Q|HOW DID YOU FIRST ENTER THE LEARNING AND DEVELOPMENT FIELD?
It goes back to the 1980s; I was teaching IT in a further education college, which is like a vocational college. I was really not only just interested in IT, but I was also interested in its approaches for teaching and learning, so I initiated lots of what we referred to back then as CBT [computer-based training] projects. Then in about 1990, I went to teach IT at a university in London as a senior lecturer and my interest continued to grow.
In 1994, my husband, who went on the first World Wide Web conference at CERN in Geneva, introduced me to the web. As soon as I saw it, I could see the potential for education, and I eagerly surfed around the web, taught myself how to use HTML, and developed a series of workshops on it. I set up the first web-based course in my university, where I tried to put into practice all my thoughts about how you could use this new media to deliver and provide education online.
Q|YOU RECENTLY WROTE THAT YOU'RE MOVING AWAY FROM THE TERM "SOCIAL LEARNING" IN FAVOR OF THE TERM "WORKPLACE COLLABORATION." WHY THE SHIFT?
It's the word "learning" that I've struggled with, as people associate it with training. I decided to get rid of the learning word altogether and focus on the collaboration aspects because that's the most important: people coming together and working together and learning together. …