It’s raining again, which is good for Auckland as we are still in drought situation. Seems them what know best, decided some time ago we don’t need a new reservoir until 2032! This, despite the  Auckland population increasing by more than 30% over the past five years and still increasing at an alarming rate. Must be nice  doing nothing , repeating the obvious (we’re short of water) and being given a big fat salary to boot.

However, nothing to do with e-learning unless your curriculum has been watered down due to the lockdown

I am slowly withdrawing from the world of e-learning  as I spend more time with the family , the dog, the cafes and beaches of Orewa (not necessarily in that order), north of Auckland.
After 26 years of presenting eLearningWatch, the time has come to change direction. I would like to think that the majority of motivated and passionate educators are technologically competent these days to search and find what they want very quickly and efficiently; the Internet is an endless supply of  value added resources for educators and students alike. Covid 19 has been a wake up for the world of online learning and it can only get better from now on.

Future editions of the eLearningWatch will be shorter and less frequent. I will still endeavour to provide useful  and timely information that comes to hand.

In the meantime , thanks to all of you who have been part of the eLearningWatch community (some since 1994). All previous editions of the Watch, back to 2004,(thanks to the technological expertise  and collaboration of Vern Smith) can be found at


Now it’s on to speaking to the potatoes and beetroot as they begin to raise their heads; a good crop is on the horizon. Dog has indicated it’s time for a womble around the wetlands.

In this posting there are links to: Community of Practice Design Guide, How to teach online,History UK Pandemic Pedagogy Project,10 E-learning Trends that will Dominate in 2020, Videoconferencing alternatives,How people learn, Communities of Practice report, Conferences and the odd one out.

Much less to chew over, but plenty to exercise the neurones.

1. This link will take you to one  part of the ‘History UK’s Pandemic Pedagogy project’ Worth working your way through each of the reports; the  report ‘Pandemic Pedagogy – Redesigning for online teaching, or Why learning objectives aren’t a waste of time’ is well worth perusing.
If you have time, follow the link to the Blog; has some very interesting and useful comments and ideas as well.


2.Videoconferencing Alternatives: How Low-Bandwidth Teaching Will Save Us All.Another useful and practical article from the people at the Center for Teaching and Learning at DePaul University.

Videoconferencing Alternatives: How Low-Bandwidth Teaching Will Save Us All

3.How to teach online. One person’s approach to the dodgy subject of teaching online. As. Many have said ‘one size doesn’t fit all’ and being flexible and innovative in your approach to teaching online should be paramount in your design of a learning event. This website provides some useful ideas and insights in how you might present your online teaching.

How to Teach Online

4.Community of Practice Design Guide: A Step-by-Step Guide for Designing & Cultivating Communities of Practice in Higher EducationCommunities of practice can be an effective vehicle for enhancing the online learning experience . They have been around for a long time as has this guide. Still very useful in the ever changing learning environment challenged by Covid 19. Worth reading and digesting the ideas, comments and suggestions

5. Expert Opinion: 10 E-learning Trends that will Dominate in 2020 [Infographic] Was this assembled before Covid 19? How does it fit with your view of the learning world in 2020?  I have to say . I must be falling behind the eight ball as I have never heard of the’ experts’ featured in the infographic. However I guess most of what they say makes some sense:-)


6.How people learn. This is one of many excellent guides produced by the Centre for Teaching at Vanderbilt University. One could spend many hours perusing all the guides and there is bound to be at least one that that will interest you and spark the creative in you.

How People Learn

7. Communities of Practice: Sector Audit Report July 2020 . This report, funded by Ufi-the VocTech Trust, has been produced by the Association For Learning Technology(ALT) in the UK as part of its Communities of Practice project.
Well worth reading, as per usual for ALT, it is a well structured and informed report which has some interesting findings and recommendations in relation to Communities of Practice that could be applied/ modified for any  education sector around the world. Have a look at the main site which supports the project.


8.Conferences: NOTE: Details are given of various conferences in the pipeline. As a consequence of the Corona Virus , it is highly likely some will be cancelled or move online.

8.1 Annual Blackboard Teaching & Learning Conference. The first Asia Pacific conference being held from 26-27 August and now will be a virtual conference.  It will still include all that we look forward to from the face to face conference, just now online


8.2  Due to current circumstances, ASCILITE 2020 will run virtually. It will be held, online, on Monday 30 November and Tuesday 1 December 2020.

2020 Conference


9.Odd one out: As Covid 19 occupies much of our time, it is useful and interesting to note the advice provided by the World Health Organisation:Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) advice for the public: Mythbusters.

Amazing what people appear to think will protect them against the virus.  Drinking Bleach of course is probably the most famous! Some of the others would be funny if the situation wasn’t so serious.


That’s it for now.


Richard Elliott
The Eternal Macademic
Auckland, New Zealand

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