well, Spring has sprung a leak and if we get any more rain, the veggies will enter the world of hydroponics.
A’friend’ sent me some awful jokes last week so I responded by sending him ten puns,to punish him, so to speak; no pun in ten did.Think about it.
Enough of the trivia.
This month’s list involves a journey of Jiscovery resulting in access to a plethora of excellent resources from Jisc. All highly relevant for the modern future thinking educational guru.
ALT in the UK had its annual conference in September and

FE week

have published a very good supplement relating to technology use in Further Education with a round-up of some of the highlights of the conference on pages four and five. Nicely put together and well worth reading. Download for free.
Congratulations to Professor Diana Laurillard for being made an honorary life member of ALT. A well deserved accolade. Her contribution to the field of learning design, education technology and education in general is beyond measure.
The posting this month includes links to Jisc resources on online learning and management of assessment,Course Resource Appraisal Modeller, Horizon report on emerging technologies (K12),Learning Orientation Research, Learn and teach guide, Facilitating Critical Thinking, time mapper,communities of practice,collaborative learning,inclusion and mobility, conferences and the odd one out
1.Online learning Readiness Tool [Beta]. Another excellent initiative from the Jisc stable. They would like your feedback
Extract from the site:


AND from the same organisation: Three very useful guides:
1. Scaling up online learning
Provides tools, techniques, strategies and activities to support the development and provision of online learning programmes.


2.Curriculum design and support for online learning
Helping you to make choices around curriculum design and determine support needs when scaling up online learning


3. Technology and tools for online learning
Provides guidance, resources and case studies around the use of technologies to support online courses and distance learning programmes.


Electronic Management of Assessment
Online exams: migration or transformation?


e-Assessment survey Final report.


AS well as:
‘What makes successful online learner?’


2. The NMC/CoSN Horizon Report: 2016 K-12 Edition examines emerging technologies for their potential impact on and use in teaching, learning, and creative inquiry in schools.


3.The Course Resource Appraisal Modeller (CRAM): You might find this tool useful for a range of reasons; my interest was in determining course costing(as well as learning benefits).Free to download and use.
Extract from the site:
‘The CRAM tool enables you to model the teaching costs and learning benefits of any type of course, whether classroom based, wholly online, or blended. It may be any length, and may run in any education or training sector. The tool is Java-based and is free to download’.


4.Communities of Practice seem to come up for discussion and debate on many occasions. This site provides as reasonable explanation and overview of the concept and how it works .


5.Collaborative Learning: Group work is something that many educators employ to develop communication skills and skills required to work with other s for a common gaol. This site provides an overview of tools, methods and approaches to collaborative learning:
‘The term ‘collaborative learning’ refers to an instruction method in which learners at various performance levels work together in small groups toward a common goal. The learners are responsible for one another’s learning as well as their own. Thus, the success of one learner helps other students to be successful’


6.Design and Teach. This is a pretty comprehensive and extensive resource for staff from Carnegie Mellon University, providing some useful guidance and examples on designing and teaching courses.


7. Learning Orientation Research: Learning orientations(amongst other aspects) explore the comprehensive set of psychological factors (conative, affective, cognitive, and social) that influence how individuals approach learning and manage the learning process.
This site provides a raft of resources and insights into various factors that influence learning.


of interest to me was the section which provides some useful resources and examples of designing learning environments. Some are a bit dated but it’s sometimes useful to reflect on what has gone before and whether the processes have continued to evolve.


8.INCLUSION IN AN AGE OF MOBILITY: John Traxler Institute of Education, University of Wolverhampton, Wolverhampton, United Kingdom [Research in Learning Technology 2016, 24: 31372 – http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/rlt.v24.31372 ]
An interesting paper which explores some of the issues and problems and promises associated with the rise of mobile learning in the UK and the relevance and interpretation of inclusion in the ever changing learning environment. Well worth reading and thinking about possible implications within the educational environments of your own country.


9.Time mapper. Here is a free (open source) and useful tool for those who are interested in history and anything that has been around for a significant time. Create your own time map of explorers, global wars, development of postage stamps or whatever is of interest.


Have a look at one person’s approach to its use:


10.From a project supported by New Zealand’s Ako Aotearoa, the National Centre for Tertiary Teaching Excellence: A Tool for tertiary teachers Facilitating Critical Thinking in Initial Teacher Education.
A useful initiative with a set of tools to assist in the process of developing critical thinking skills. Well worth exploring for all disciplines.
Extract from the Introduction:
‘This tool is designed for tertiary teachers to use in their everyday work to develop critically thinking students. Although the tool developed as a result of a project focused on early childhood initial teacher education, the authors intend that teachers working in other disciplines will also find this tool helpful’.


11. Conferences
11.1 ascilite 2016
The ascilite2016 conference will be held at the Adelaide Convention Centre from 28 to 30 November 2016. The conference is being hosted by the University of South Australia.Book your place for what promises to be another excellent event.


12. The odd one out: Letters of Note. Once you start reading , it’s like a good book, can’t stop. Some fascinating,sad, poignant and thought provoking letters telling interesting stories across time. Worth perusing when you have some time to set quietly and reflect.


That’s it until some fireworks next month
Richard Elliott
The Eternal Macademic
New Zealand

Back to top