Peer Learning Summit

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The George Washington University's Marvin Center, 3rd Floor Grand Ballroom

800 21st St NW

Washington, DC 20052

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Event description


The Second Annual Peer Learning Summit

Washington, DC

3 May 2018

8:00am – 4:30pm

Peer Learning Circles: The Emerging Revolution

There is a revolution brewingone that is contributing to the growth of competency, collaboration, curiosity, and empathy around the globe.

Peer learning circles (also called peer coaching) involves two or more peers with common interest and goals coming together to provide support and learning. It began in earnest in the mid-1980s when pairs of teachers anxious to reform education came together to improve the impact of their teaching. Today, peer learning circles are used by organizations to develop leaders, facilitate change and transition, solve management challenges, break down silos, and transfer knowledge. Today, a well-known technology firm has as many as 80 peer learning circles in place to foster leadership competencies in their sales and marketing group.

Peer learning circles are growing in influence because they work! The creation of a safe environment to gain clarity, empathy, insights and accountability goes a long way towards explaining growth impact. Peer learning circles are simple, scalable, cost effective, and easy to sustain.

Peer learning circles have many variants and scores of applications. One of the most powerful yet underutilized application of peer learning circles is for transfer of training. What if every major training course were followed by a series of peer learning circles with groups of 3-4 participants? The impact on ROI would be significant!

What’s the Summit About? The purpose of the summit—convened by the Peer Learning Community—is to gather people who have an interest in learning about the power and practice of peer-to -peer learning and its capacity to ignite and sustain change in individuals, organizations, and communities.

Who Should Come? Learning & development professionals, coaches, educators, change agents, facilitators, and people from all walks of life who are working or experimenting with peer-to-peer learning, and anyone who would like to explore the power of peer learning.

Where is it happening? The George Washington University’s Marvin Center, 3rd Floor, Grand Ballroom, at 800 21st St NW, Washington, DC 20052. The venue is graciously being provided by our sponsor, The George Washington University’s Center for Excellence in Public Leadership.

  • When is it happening? 3 May 2018, 8:00am (registration & breakfast) – 4:30pm

What will happen? Our intention is to have a creative blend of experiential activities, compelling presentations, and reflective dialogue as outlined below:

  • Ernie Turner, internationally recognized practitioner and thought leader, will kick off the event with a keynote about the power of peer learning circles. Ernie is the author of Action Reflection Learning (with Isabel Rimanovsky), and Gentle Interventions for Team Coaching: Little Things that Make a Big Difference.

  • Experienced practitioners will provide an orientation to the basic ingredients for successful peer learning and explain the learning principles behind it that make it work.

  • Much of the day will be spent experiencing peer learning, with attendees participating in three peer learning circles and “trying on” different approaches.

  • We will also feature a number of peer learning circle success stories. The presenters will be leaders from organizations who have had success year after year in using peer learning circles. Presenters will use the PechaKucha presentation method to deliver creative, concise, and compelling stories about their journeys:

    • Learning How to Ask Questions in a Peer Coaching Environment: Hard but Rewarding Lessons for Lawyers and Economists, Irene Recio, Citizenship and Immigration Services

    • Virtual Peer Learning: Training, Technology, and Facilitation in Circle,” Bob Halperin, Circl.es

    • Peer Learning Circles: Exercising Five Leadership Disciplines to Develop Senior Leaders at Goodwill Industries, Michael Wood, Senior Leader Program Director, Goodwill Industries

    • Using Peer Learning with Professors and Higher Education Students from Around the world in Virtual Sessions, Isabel Rimanoczy, Ed.D., author and consultant

  • We’ll wrap up the day by reflecting on and sharing our experiences of peer learning and our practical ideas for how and where we can use it to support growth and change.

  • We’ll connect attendees with resources that will help you stand up or change up your own peer learning groups.

Our ultimate goal? Invite more people to use peer learning to build supportive relationships and create positive change in their lives and in the world.

Please join us!

Listen to Testimonials from Last Year's Summit:


The Peer Learning Summit is sponsored by the George Washington University Center for Excellence in Public Leadership. To learn more about upcoming events as well as their coaching services, please visit the following links:



Food at the Summit: Breakfast, lunch, snacks, and beverages will be included with registration. We are offering bagels, muffins, yogurt, and fresh fruit for breakfast, and a variety of boxed lunches containing salad or sandwich (vegetarian and other) with chips, cookie, and beverage for lunch.

Visitor Parking:

If you choose to drive to GWU, a limited number of visitor parking spaces are available in the Academic Center Parking Garage (801 22nd Street NW; entrance on I Street NW between 22nd and 21st Streets) and in the Marvin Center Parking Garage (800 21st Street NW; entrance on H Street NW, between 22nd and 21st Streets). The parking fee is $18 per day or for a portion of the day (subject to change). On-campus street parking is available but it is also limited and time limits are strictly enforced.

  • Academic Center Parking Garage is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week
  • Marvin Center Parking Garage is open from 7am until midnight, 7 days a week

If you are using the Academic Center Parking Garage, exit on I Street and walk approximately one block to the right. Turn right onto 21st Street. The Marvin Center will be on your right on 21st Street between I and H Streets (just past the dormitory on the corner).

If you are using the Marvin Center Parking Garage, take the garage elevator to the 1st Floor and go through the food court to get to the main elevators that take you to the 3rd Floor.

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The George Washington University's Marvin Center, 3rd Floor Grand Ballroom

800 21st St NW

Washington, DC 20052

View Map

Refund Policy

Refunds up to 7 days before event

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