Tag Archives: Twitter

My Top 10 Tweets of 2012

11 Dec

Twitter is such an important part of my PLN that this year I thought it would be a good idea to collate my top 10 tweets of 2012. These tweets are not my own tweets, but tweets that I have either RT or made a favourite.

1. 1

In the year of Storyline and Captivate 6, an interesting observation that shapes my instructional design decisions.

2. 2

I’ve noticed a move away from e-learning and towards video creation. A great blog post explaining why.


3. 3

This video will change your life (well help you explain to your manager the need for an extension to a deadline).


4. 4

Another fantastic observation about a trend in L&D departments this year.

5. 5

Sometimes we need big ideas to inspire. This is a big idea this inspires me about the future of learning.

6. 6

I love tweets that point to great examples of work. Here is an example of how to use Prezi that is just “wow”!


7. 7

Susan Cain’s argument about “the power of introverts” is a revelation for me, especially in the context of working in a North American workplace.


8. 8

This tweet was an eye opener. Time to rethink gender and technology.

9. 9

I don’t get to go to conferences, but hashtags and live-tweeting have made me feel that I have attended several this year.

10. 10

Going to work is like reliving my childhood (sometimes).

And one extra, because sometimes Twitter delivers gems like this:


My Top 10 Tools for Learning and Why (mid-year review 2012)

13 Jul

We are halfway through the year (2012), so for fun I thought that I would put together “my top 10 tools for learning and why” list. So here it is:

1. Twitter – I’ve been using Twitter for nearly two years. It is at the hub of my personal learning network.
2. OneNote – Has changed the way I take notes and develop my work.
3. Compfight – Is a Flickr search tool that I use for stunning visual images in presentations.
4. WordPress – Blogs bring you the bigger picture and WordPress allows me to blog anywhere/anytime.
5. Wikipedia – If I ever want to get the basics on a subject, Wikipedia is my go to. I also use iPhone apps ID Guru and kineo’s elearning tips for more specialized learning terms.
6. YouTube – Remains a vital learning resource. It has saved me on numerous occasions. My most recent favourite YouTube video is from eLearnerEngaged.
7. iTunes – I love listening to the “Down the Hall” podcasts.
8. Pinterest – I’m just starting to see the benefits of Pinterest for education – I’m thinking “visual thinking” may be the new “critical thinking.”
9. visual.ly – Creating infographics is the new must have skill for the learning specialist and visual.ly is a great tool to get started with.
10. Zotero – Is a research tool with a user-friendly interface that doesn’t scare you.

I’ll create another top 10 list at the end of the year and compare what’s changed. In the meantime, you can compare my current list with last year’s blog post on top 10 tools for learning and why.

The Latest Rapid E-learning Tools – Too Much of a Good Thing?

7 Jun

Recently I was really fascinated by this tweet from Andy Jones:

For a number of years, I’ve been creating training materials with rapid development tools (mostly Captivate). The “creation” process has been fairly organic, in that over time I have developed a sense of what works well and what simply doesn’t.

During the same time, rapid development tools have vastly improved, especially from a developer’s perspective. What seemed like a distant possibility years ago, seems fairly simple to do and achieve these days.

But Andy’s tweet raises an important point, are rapid development tools guiding developers down the wrong path? A path to standard design templates and stock photos of office staff – e.g. bland and boring e-learning.

My recent experience suggests that the answer could be yes.

This week I have been reviewing a couple of e-learning modules created in Captivate. One module took the standard project template approach and was stitched together by the aggregator tool. Unfortunately the result was an uneven table of contents that made it virtually impossible for the learner (me) to navigate through the course.

The second module had a more hierarchical structure that I could easily navigate through. However, parts of the content, clearly created in PowerPoint and imported into Captivate, seemed like a mishmash. This resulted in the module not only having an uneven look and feel, but gave me a disjointed learning experience.

So, as rapid e-learning tools have improved vastly over the years, why haven’t learning experiences?

Are the tools the problem? Or is it the developers?

Perhaps it’s both. Rapid e-learning tools have been developed so anyone can use them. That’s great, I’m for user-friendly software. But the result, is often the creation of an end-product that is learner unfriendly.

So what is the answer?

Maybe we (L&D departments) should stop buying into the “game-changing” marketing of rapid e-learning tools. While the tools are easier to use (and do amazing things), not everyone can create amazing learning experiences from scratch (despite the array of design templates and stock photos available).

The Possibilities of Learning Analytics

17 Feb

Tony Bates recently posted a history of e-learning/online learning – http://www.tonybates.ca/2012/02/11/stephen-downes-overview-of-e-learning-and-a-little-history-lesson/
It is worth a read, especially if you are interested in understanding the development of e-learning/online learning. The comment from Linda Harasim on Tony’s blog post is also worth a read. Linda argues that “nothing significant has come to our field [e-learning/online learning] over the past decade,” adding that social media have “become quite a distraction in education.”

This is quite an argument, and definitely worth debating. Social media can be distracting, but it does create powerful networks. Instead of social media, Linda suggests educators should focus on the developing field of learning analytics. Learning analytics, Linda writes, could help educators “identify (easy and effective) ways to assess collaborative learning and knowledge building.”

I have not used any specific learning analytics software, but I have used Google Analytics to count the numbers of clicks a training video gets and the duration that learners view the video. This data has informed my instructional approach with additional training videos (shorter in duration and placed on a specific training video webpage).

While learning analytics is still a new field, any approach that has the potential to identify better learning experiences needs to be fully explored. In the meantime, I will be following Linda’s work (although probably not on Twitter!).

My Top 10 Tools for Learning and Why

4 Nov

The Centre for Learning & Performance Technologies are currently collating their Top 100 Tools for Learning 2011. To contribute to the Top 100 click the link below:


Creating a list of Top 100’s or even Top 10’s is an interesting exercise. It makes us think about what is important and why.

Here is my Top 10 tools for learning and why:

1. Twitter – tell me 10 years ago that I could have access to the ideas of learning experts from around the world for free and I would have said that you were kidding.
2. Wikipedia – not only can I find out about a subject but I can add to the content. May be Quora could integrate with Wikipedia?
3. YouTube – visual learning at my fingertips. ScreenR is also a valuable tool.
4. Dropbox – I’ll Dropbox-it – no matter the size of the file I can share it with a group.
5. Slideshare – give a presentation at a conference then share it for the world to view.
6. Prezi – not quite the death of Powerpoint, but so much better.
7. Diigo – my web browsing annotated.
8. Evernote – got an idea then Evernote it.
9. BEEDOCS (Timeline) – visual learning at its best.
10. WordPress – blogging made easy.

Twitter and Revolutions

29 Mar

Over the last couple of months, Twitter and the revolutions in the Middle-East have caught the imagination of the mainstream media. However, personally I’ve also caught the Twitter revolution bug.

For me,  Twitter has become an extremely useful tool for professional development. It provides me an insight into the minds of learning professionals across the world.  Giving me ideas, suggestions, and a shared experience of the challenges of being a learning professional in 2011.

And yes, not everything I read seems relevant (I don’t care what you ate last night) but the majority of the time I feel rewarded by the culture of sharing the latest information/thought.  And these nuggets of gold often end up in my work, recycled, repurposed.