An individual cannot do anything alone; therefore, it takes several other people to get one task done. This process requires one who will be exposed to a new environment while enhancing qualities to learn, understand, and work well with others. Learning is as much a part of our human nature as eating or sleeping, that is both life-sustaining and inevitable, and . . . given a chance, we are quite good at it (Wenger, 2000, p. 210).
Communities of Practice (COP)
“Communities of Practice,” is a group of people that cooperate together to give back to the whole community in various ways (Nasir & Cooks, 2009, p. 44). There are two major modes of membership in a COP which are, knowing and belonging. “Knowing” has to do with the skills a person can bring to bear within a community that needs and values those competences. “Belonging” in a COP means being a member in a COP and with some relationships that emerge and are maintained in the community. As the member works with others, negotiates activities and meetings, collaborates on creating new projects and producing agreed-upon work; yet, their interface with other members of the community will affect them and perhaps change them over time (Wenger, 2000, p. 229). First-hand experience in a COP
Our groups the first COP for this course were all assigned by the instructor. We all came together decided on what to do as a new group to think of what makes up a team. Each of us contributed to this thought and all were pretty much on the same page. Some ideas were: cooperation, communication, respect, exchanging contact information, and working together. In this COP, we were given small tasks that helped our group to prepare ourselves for our final project. We concluded to meet regularly on Fridays during class-time whether the task was big or small, we insisted on working together. Our project for this COP was to make an identity insight video, which resulted in several meetings to plan out and make our video. Another COP for this course was not assigned by the instructor, but every individual got to choose this time. Pretty much all of the groups stayed with their remaining groups that they were in prior to this. Since, in our first COP we already experienced how a COP should function, we went straight to work. We were given multiple assignments to work on during this section of the course. We continued to have our regular Friday meetings during class time on Fridays as well. However, in this COP, we had difficulties with everyone meeting on time, and being able to meet on other days rather than our regular Fridays. Despite these challenges our COP improved on was to contact each other more through text messaging and emailing more to update on group assignments, group projects, and reminders about meetings. For our project, we had to make a website for a place and we had to convey what place attachment has to do with the location that we choose to do our website on, which takes a lot of timing and extra meeting times out of class. Again, the last COP of this course was set by the instructor. In this final COP, we were assigned to research what a community of practice is and how it functions. Our tasks were decided upon as what our roles in the COP. Which were: director(s), observers, interviewers, designers, and builders. Everyone had the opportunity to choose what role they wanted. The entire group held responsibilities such as their individual tasks, as well as our group work. One weakness that we had in this COP was lack of communication. Due to the increase in the group size, we struggled with contacting all members. However, our strength remained as we strived to work together despite the challenges of being in a larger group. Two studies of COPs
One study of COP utilizes a comprehensive community based on a sustainability structure with a focus on a resort destination in accommodating a potential model for a more inclusive long-term destination planning...