The web is a great place to collaborate with peers and stay up-to-date on education news and trends. There are dozens of sites committed to connecting students, teachers, administrators, and education activists. The following ten sites provide lively environments and tools that help people freely exchange education information online.
LearnCentral - LearnCentral is an interesting site that works like a social network for education. Members can store, organize, and find educational resources. They can also use the site's tools to hold live, online meetings and collaborate with people around the world.
Partners in Learning Network - This Microsoft site is home to a global community of educators who come together online to share resources and information about learning technologies. The Partners in Learning Network also gives community members access to free learning tools and a database of lesson plans and education-related activities.
Pronetos - Pronetos is known as the Professor Network, but it also welcomes students of every academic discipline. Members can communicate and collaborate online. They can also share papers with colleagues, post course materials, search for research in their field, and read education-related articles.
Academia.edu - Academia.edu is a good place to follow the latest research and share your own papers. The site's search engine allows members to search for colleagues, university departments, research interests, and more. Members can also be notified when someone searches for them using Google.
Udemy - Udemy is a unique website that allows anyone to teach and learn online. Members can upload presentations, videos, host live classroom sessions, write blog posts, or create their own courses. They can also browse and take courses created by other members.
Connexions - The Connexions site was created by Rice University in 1999 to provide a place for people around the world to publish and freely share scholarly content on the web. Course materials can be found for every age group and academic level--from children to college students to professionals.
Sclipo - Sclipo is a web learning application that is free for K-12 and university teachers. The app can be used to create a web academy for students. Academy features include a course management system, an online library, tools to create online classes and webinars, and communication resources.
Global Education Collaborative - The Global Education Collaborative is a Ning community for students, teachers, parents, and administrators. Members can discuss education-related issues, partner on projects, build professional contacts, and more.
Edutopia - Edutopia was created by the George Lucas Education Foundation to help people create interactive learning environments. The site offers learning and teaching resources, contributions from practitioners, practical advice, education-related documentaries, and a community where members can chat, collaborate, and share additional resources.
WTT - We The Teachers (WTT) is a teacher-focused site that combines a search feature with social community functions. The site can be used to search for lesson plans, share ideas about education, and ask questions. WTT also provides several tools that can be used to create crossword, Sudoku puzzles, and other learning-based games.
Guest post from education writer Karen Schweitzer. Karen is the About.com Guide to Business School. She also writes about pharmacy technician education for PharmacyTechnicianCertification.com.