CAMLS Learning Groups
When groups of people connect to share diversity of experience, values and perspectives, ideas are generated that give people many more choices for solutions and strategies to implement in their own situations. This is the strength of collaborative learning, and the goal of the CAMLS Learning Groups.
CAMLS Learning Groups are communities of learners within the CAMLS membership who gather together around common interests and job duties looking for support, training, or a broader perspective on how they approach their work.
There are Nine Learning Groups (formerly the CAMLS Committees) that offer programs and/or online forums for group members. Any staff member from a CAMLS library is eligible to participate in this innovative program free of charge.
How it works
In many ways, the Learning Groups will work in any way they need to in order to support the learning of members. The program is loosely structured, so that meetings and topics can have the flexibility to respond to changes and training needs quickly. Anyone can sign up to lead a meeting at any time, and the program will be advertised on CAMLS CE calendar, as well as announced to existing learning group members.
- Opportunity to Lead: The meetings are informal, usually small, and offer staff a great opportunity to discover or fine-tune your leadership potential in a supportive climate.
- Opportunity to Own Your Work: Take the initiative to build on your strengths and set personal goals.
- Opportunity to Get Things Done: Sharing resources and working cooperatively can make all the difference in seeing some projects come to fruition.
- Opportunity to Share Your Expertise: Chances are, you have more of it than you think.
- Opportunity to Get Answers: Getting new perspectives on common problems will give you more choices for action.
- Opportunity for Support: You can build a network of peer support to carry with you throughout your career.
What is the role of the leader?
As a Learning Group leader, you are not expected to be a teacher—in collaborative learning groups, the group members are responsible for each other’s learning and learn from one another. You become a leader when you volunteer to organize a short (usually two-hour) program or discussion surrounding an issue. There is no long-term commitment associated with being a leader—you can sign up to lead a meeting when you have an idea, and you can even have a co-leader for the meeting.
Because the Learning Groups are informal and member-directed, they can evolve into whatever they need to be that will best suit the members. Often, an online forum can provide the support needed for a particular topic, as well as save time and travel money.
How to get the most from collaborative peer learning (Coming Soon)
If your past experiences in group learning have not been as successful as you’d like, learning how you make meaning during the learning process may help you to focus on your strengths while being aware of special challenges that you can address. Take our inventory to learn more.