elearningWatch November 2008

I guess our northern hemisphere friends will be looking forward to snow and evenings camped around the lounge fire or with the central heating turned up to boiling point. An excellent possie for exploring elearning resources. Those of us down under will be trying to get the sand out from between our toes and teeth.
I’m going to have a busy time over the next couple of months helping some colleagues develop a different conference experience for ASCILITE 2009.
A bit early you think? Well for the second time only in its history, it’s going to be in AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND! It’s being hosted jointly by The Auckland University and AUT University. Those who came last time in 2002 are still talking about it. 2009 promises to be even better, so save your groats, mark your diaries and make sure you are there! I’m in the Chair and have a formidable committee of real experts, so it’s got to be good!
This months posting provides links to a wide variety of resources. An excellent tutorial on finding images, a new 3D community site in New Zealand, information on some useful events, a guide to social learning, evaluating Webquests, an innovative library search system, some anatomy atlases, videos that explain e-learning things in a simple way, a space for recreating educational resources, conferences and the odd one out.
December will have its challenges and did I mention ASCILITE 2009 will be in AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND?
1. Nanyang Technological University: EdUTorium calendar of events. Some interesting activities for November and December for you to peruse and consider if you are intending to travel to Singapore.


2. Searching for Images on the Web? Would you like to learn how to use the Internet to find copyright cleared images for your work, quickly and efficiently?
An excellent Webased tutorial has been created by TASI (the JISC Advisory service for Digital Media) and Intute as part of the Intute: Virtual Training Suite.
This is a free, interactive tutorial which is bound to improve your image searching skills.


3. Web3D community. This is essentially the brainchild of Scott Diener from The Auckland University in New Zealand. What does it do?
Extract from the site:
‘Welcome to the new Web3D community at Ako Aotearoa. This site is a source for resources, information and collaboration around the use of Virtual Worlds in tertiary education. Most importantly, this community will be shaped by members as it develops and supports wide collaboration’.
There’s already a wealth of information on the site and it’s building. Join the community and contribute.


4. LENS: The University of Chicago Library search system. I have include this here because I think it is a very comprehensive and somewhat fascinating resource which provides some very useful information on finding resources about a topic of your choice.Results are presented in three panels, search, discover and refine. I entered ‘elearning’ and then followed a trail of links which were not all dependent on the library resources. Give it a try.


5. Open University Labspace is a resource from the Open University in the UK where anyone can reuse and remix the open education resources from the Open learn, LearnSpace site. This could be a very useful resource for your teaching and learning. Explore and enjoy.


6. ASTD Learning Circuits has been transformed. Visit the new look Website and explore the resources. Click on the ‘ The virtual gathering experience’ link on the home page. It makes for interesting reading.


7. Anatomy Atlases: It’s always nice to find some material on the web which has been digitised from original sources produced many years ago and is free to access. If you are in the Health Sciences yo may find the links to the atlases useful for your teaching or as supplementary resources for your students. You can explore for hours and view some really excellent diagrams and related material




8. New resource from the Australian Flexible Learning network: Your Guide to social e-learning. As always the material produced by the AFLN is of a high quality up to date and relevant to the changes occuring in learning environments. It has excellent guides , resources and advice. well worth exploring.


9. Best WebQuests:This site features a chart of webquests that can be accessed by subject and grade level. Information is also available on what makes a good webquest activity for students.


10. BrowsemyStuff Blog: This site contains content from Tony Karrer’s eLearning Technology blog and content from around the eLearning community – from blogs and as selected by community members using social tagging.


11. Video sharing in plain english from Commoncraft
Extract from the site
‘We Make Videos
Our videos are short, simple and focused on making complex ideas easy to understand. We use a whiteboard-and-paper format we call Paperworks that is designed to cut out the noise and stick to what matters.’
The videos are easy to watch and presented in an engaging way. I lthought the short video on’ Wikis in Plain English’ was nicely put together. Well worth a look.


12. Conferences
12.1 ASCILITE 2008: The ascilite 2008 conference theme is: Hello! Where are you in the landscape of educational technology?


Nov 30 – Dec 3
Where: Deakin University Burwood Campus
221 Burwood Highway
Burwood Victoria 3125


12.2 Innovating e-Learning online conference 2008:Learning in a Digital Age – Are we prepared?
This is the next online conference in the very successful series initiated by JISC. Join with the rest of your international colleagues and enjoy some challenging and productive discussion and insights into e-learning at the frontier of education.
Venue: Online conference
Date 4-7 November 2008 NOTE THE DATE!
‘Themes for Innovating e-Learning 2008 focus on the productive and energising tension between the tried and tested and the wholly innovative. e-Learning may now have established a foothold in learning and teaching, but are the demands of delivering the curriculum restricting its innovative potential? How can we plan to ensure the best possible e-enhancement of learning in the future?’


Details of the programme are now available at:


12.3 ALT-C: The next conference ALT-C 2009: ‘ In dreams begins responsibility:
‘choices, evidence, and change’ will be held in at the University of Manchester, 8-10 September
Gilly Salmon and Tom Boyle are the Conference Co-Chairs


12.4 ASCILITE 2009: ‘Same Places, Different Spaces’ AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND: DECEMBER 6- 9th.
Put the date on your calendar start saving, and watch this space for website details, coming soon.
Odd one out
13. The NASA Space Agency has made free Web-based educational products for a range of learners. 55 short, 5-10 minute video segments (eClips), are available on-demand via the Internet. Many of the agency’s missions are depicted . They are aimed at engaging learners in science and engineering. There’s lots to look at and its not just for kids!


That’s it until the Christmas bells begin to chime again.
Richard Elliott
The Eternal Macademic
New Zealand

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