edWeb.net: Helping Educational Professionals Grow and Serve Knowledge Effectively

Lisa Schmucki, Founder and CEO, edWeb.netLisa Schmucki, Founder and CEO
Technology has infused into every crevice of our life, modifying the ways we conduct and conclude everyday tasks. In contrary to a few generations back in time, the efficiency of imparting education and the accuracy in absorbing it has escalated with the adoption of technology. While the world focuses on how well education is delivered to the receiving end, the story of the delivering end is often undermined. An equal magnitude of importance is essential for the professionals involved in delivering education, which in turn can translate to more dedicated efforts, further improving the dynamics achieved by the education sector. Founded in 2008 by Lisa Schmucki, edWeb.net is a social and learning network that has come a long way in filling this void. By the end of 2015 it had a membership count over 140,000.

The world has witnessed the potential of social network in bridging gap between individuals; exchange of information has found a new dimension. Platforms such as the widely popular LinkedIn provided the formal outlook professionals looked for in social networking. But addressing a particular class of professionals has not gained much momentum. edWeb leverages this concept and connects professionals involved in education—at any level —teachers, librarians, administrators, faculty, educational associations, education companies, government and community leaders. “We provide a platform to gather and share learnings, thoughts and information among professionals to accelerate the dynamics of education system,” says Lisa, CEO, edWeb.net.

Professional Development imparted to educators often are “one size fits all” and fail to address the requirements specific to an individual. Through edWeb, educators can choose from a diversified collection, the topics relevant to them and remain updated about them through free monthly webinars; with each webinar event lasting one clock hour. The presenters of webinar events hosted by edWeb are experts in their fields backed by relevant experience. A presenter’s live webcam feed is combined with live chat from the participants and the last 15 to 20 minutes are usually allotted for the participants to clarify questions from the presenter.

We provide a platform to gather and share learnings, thoughts and information among professionals to accelerate the dynamics of education system

Interested individuals can create their own learning networks and communities to collaborate and share new ideas and initiatives revolving around a given theme. These networks and communities eventually knit together as “families” where peers can chat and float case studies for discussions. Using edWeb is free for individuals, however, non-profit and profit organizations are charged for hosting webinar events.

After every webinar event, participants can take a CE (continuing education) quiz, the successful completion of which earns the participant a CE certificate. The CE certificates can be included by participants to achieve their professional development goals. However, it is recommended for an individual to check whether the concerned supervisory organization is approved for CE credit or not. The company also offers the participants templates to create their own Personal Learning Plan for each webinar event. Such a plan enables one to outline the goals for watching the webinar and then record reflections on the information presented. This can be helpful as an evidence of the value of engaging in professional development.

edWeb has partnerships with organizations such as Congressional Medal of Honor Foundation and DreamBox Learning Inc. for hosting learning communities and programs. Recently awarded with 2015 SIIA CODiE Awards for “Best Collaborative Social Media Solution for Educators.” edWeb aims to continue to evolve as the platform that lets educators grow professionally and intellectually. Schmucki quotes, “We need to provide more credit for educators who engage in personal, professional development so their efforts count and help them advance in their careers.”