Communities of practice have the option to contribute to the educational mission of the Association through the development of educational resources and delivery of educational content. Options include:

  • Holding virtual discussions delivered via conference call/Voice Over IP, instant messaging, chat room, Twitter, or other proposed online media.
  • Development of models and templates members can use in practice
  • Writing of newsletters, Bulletin articles, Commons posts, and white papers
  • Motivational programs are great ways to encourage more participation out of membership

As a community of practice leader, you have many options available to you to encourage continuing education for and by your members. One of these options is to recruit a regular writer from your community to The Commons. Similar options include writing articles for The Bulletin, creating a regular newsletter for your community of practice, and developing white papers for The Exchange. Leaders are also encouraged to develop models and templates members can use.

Remember, you do not have to do everything yourself. You can always recruit other members to help. The art of delegation is an important part of leadership.

The above options provide many educational opportunities for visual learners. However, adults learn best within a community. Therefore, providing virtual, synchronous opportunities for your community of practice members to interact helps build community and fosters learning. ACUI provides communities with access to conference calls, online meetings, and other approaches for building community. Contact your staff liaison to discuss the options for your community.

You can also host online learning programs with the help of ACUI. This is a great way for your community to give back to the ACUI membership. If your community would like to offer an online learning program, contact your staff liaison for an Online Learning Program Proposal Form.


Annual Conference Events

Many of your members will be attending the annual conference. This provides an excellent opportunity to develop community. Of course, the most important part of engaging community at the annual conference is to actually attend. ACUI encourages all community of practice leaders to attend and to be the face of their community of practice at the annual conference.

Start communicating now with your members about what community of practice events would be valuable to them during the annual conference. Does someone want to offer an educational session on a topic relevant to your community of practice? Would members like to have a preconference workshop? Maybe something smaller suits your group, such as a networking event, roundtable discussion, or information session. Perhaps, your members just want to socialize via a night on the town or some other social gathering. As the community of practice leader, you will be the point person, even if someone else is designated to assist or head up the event.

Whatever event you choose, you will want to contact your Central Office liaison six months prior to the annual conference to get the ball rolling.


Updated Dec. 4, 2015