Find out more in the Social Learning Handbook
Here are over 100 ways that different social technologies (and tools) are being used by learning professionals worldwide – compiled from the comments of those who have contributed to the Top 100 Tools for Learning 2009 activity.
(1) “Blogs are great for learning from others, reflection, story sharing, facilitating connections among people, philosophizing, and much more” Janice Petosky, Instructional designer,West Chester, Pennsylvania
(2) “Writing a blog is a learning activity, of course, but reading the best blogs that are available is one of my most productive learning experiences.” Jerome Martin, Book publisher, photographer and a musician from Canada.
(3) “Blogging is my chief way of making sense of things“ Michele Martin, Freelance Learning Consultant, USA
(4) “Blogs are obviously great ways to consolidate personal learning, but as it is such a great CMS I think that it lends itself exceptionally well to broadcasting content of a non-blog nature, or with multiple authors, as the centrepiece of an informal learning network.” Dan Roddy, eLearning Designer, UK
(5) “While everyone seems to get the blog thing now, few are leveraging the technology for what, at its root, it really is: a very quick web page creator. It can be a place to list assignments, a site for student interaction and discussion, and even a location for structuring and hosting an entire course. Google “23 Things” to see a blog-for-training at its best.“ Jane Bozarth, E-learning Coordinator for the North Carolina, USA, Office of State Personnel
(6) “I have set up a blog using Blogger and use this as an occasional reflection tool. I am enjoying linking other tools to my blog.” Elaine Talbert, Secondary school principal, Australia
(7) “My final year students have each set up blogs where they regularly record their thoughts about the material we cover. I also use Blogger to record occasional research updates that might be of interest to readers of my textbook, and with a view to incorporating these into a future edition.” David Hardman, psychologist at London Metropolitan University, UK
(8) “experts can easily contribute tips, thoughts, and best practices to a large community of learners. They can also be used to create a community of learners following learning events.” Julia Bulkowski, Instructional designer
(9) “Blogging has become a key medium for self-directed learning and TypePad serves me well.” Patrick Mayfield, head of training and consultancy company, UK
(10) “I manage class discussions out of class and provide additional information here following classes that students find difficult; if I am absent, this is where I can teach “remote class”.” Sarah Davis, Associate Dean at the College of Charleston in Charleston, SC
(11) Edublogs - “I use this tool as a way for our college students to post ePortfolios for free.” Judy Baker, Dean of Foothill Global Access, Foothill College in Los Altos, CA.
(12) “One of the main reasons I like Google Calendar is that it was easy to embed into my website. I put all the student assignments and other events on the calendar. Color coding allows a quick visual cue so that students (and parents) can easily distinguish scheduled quizzes and tests, daily assignments, and other events.” Don Simmons, Middle School teacher, Texas, US
(13) “Google Calendar is my diary and lesson planner” Richard Allaway, Head of Geography, International School
(14) Google Calendar – “A free way for us to organise our schedules, we share our timetables among teachers and students to make the lesson timetabling clear.” Jonathan Lecun, Online teacher for UK Teachers Online
(15) Audacity – “The highlight of of my year is working with students in creating visual podcast to represent a year in review. This I’ve blogged as well. Podcast – Year in Review Project” Mary Howard, Sixth grade teacher in Grand Island, New York
(16) Audacity – “Free and easy to create classroom podcasts and mp3s where the students get to hear, edit and publish themselves. Promotes ownership – extremely motivating.” Kora Stoll, Fifth grade teacher in Miami, Florida
(17) “All of our students have a mobile phone and if they could learn to not only reflect (as we all do) but make notes of their reflection, we would see a change in educational ownership. Students moving from ‘being taught’ to ‘constructing my knowledge’ – Gabcast is the tool to do it.” Andrew Middleton, Staff developer, Sheffield Hallam University, UK
(18) “I learn through reading and participating in the blogsphere .. Bloglines makes accessing my blogs easy .. from anywhere!” Debora Gallo, Senior Learning and Development Specialist at ING Australia
(19) “Google Reader -” which I’ve added to Bloglines as one of my RSS aggregators, using each for different collections. Both are essential for my ongoing learning about what’s happening and what’s available on the web.” Joan Vinall-Cox, social media and communications consultant, Canada
(20) “Keeping up-to-date is a rapidly changing field, and knowing what the market is saying about learning, about technology, and about us is critical for success. An RSS reader allows me to do that without having to go to dozens of websites to see if they’ve got anything new. Google Reader has been my reader of choice for a year now. I can use it from any internet-connected browser. I can organise things just how I want. I can even share particular items, or whole groups of items, with other people in many different ways. I like the way it allows me to choose how I use it – its flexibility.” Mark Berthelemy, Senior Learning Consultant at Capita Learning & Development, UK
(21) “Google Reader is my RSS reader of choice. Last month I wrote about how RSS is one of my primary personal learning tools. Reading RSS feeds gives me a constant flow of information to absorb and a route to interact with so many great people in the blogosphere.” Christy Tucker, Instructional designer, US
(22) “Google Reader has become a personal learning portal that I dive into most days.” Patrick Mayfield, head of training and consultancy company, UK
(23) Google Reader – “Another key tool for personal knowledge management and daily learning.” Jeff Cobb, works in business development for LearnSomething
(24) “Through blogs, we humans learn from each other every day. Google Reader lets me quickly scan my favorite blogs with keyboard shortcuts.” Gabe Anderson, Director of Customer Support for Articulate
(25) “A daily ritual. I use the feeds for learning about education and e-learning, to get inspired by other learning professionals”. Jeroen Bottema, Teacher trainer for the School of Education Amsterdam
(26) bubblus – “Mind mapping is useful when working with vocabulary as well as when flowcharting work or creating a graphic organizer for writing assignments.” Mary Howard, Sixth grade teacher in Grand Island, New York
(27) bubblus – “a great flow charting tool that lets individuals and groups sketch out their conceptual map.” Andrew Middleton, Staff developer, Sheffield Hallam University, UK
(28) Mindmeister – “I’ve been really getting into this collaborative mindmapping tool. Recently created a collaborative mindmap as the basis for discussions in a conference session. People from round the world contributed and on the day delegates worked on it in real time.” Rob Hubbard, creative elearning architect, UK
(29) “Mindmapping is a very powerful methodology for structuring your own ideas but also within workshops it can be a strong tool for both learners and trainers. MindMeister is a basic online tool. It stands out because of the clean and crispy interface, the excellent sharing options (share it really the way you want) and the user centric and personal service. MindMeister helps me to keep all the information in my head organized.” Marcel de Leeuwe, works for a publisher of multimedia primary education in the Netherlands
(30) “My students use Mindomo to develop solutions to complex problems and to organize online research.” Rick Lillie, accounting professor at California State University,
(31) “I’m officially hooked to Twitter and use Tweetdeck to organize and group those I follow. My best column: eLearning, of course! Not only is Twitter great for the occasional laugh, but also a great source of information and links. Have a question? Ask your Twitter network!” Cammy Bean, VP of Learning Design, Kineo
(32) “I use Twitter as a Personal Learning Network. I share daily information on resources and tools that I have found, and I select networks of people to follow that provide me with their tips, guidelines and tools that they have found.” Mary Howard, Sixth grade teacher in Grand Island, New York
(33) “Can’t imagine being without Twitter now, both as a networking tool and an aggregator of resources and information. As well as keeping up to date with existing contacts, and developing new ones, I daily discover new nuggets of interesting information and debate that I might otherwise have missed. It’s also amazing the response you can get when you ask questions – anything from directions to input on podcasting software – the Twitter audience is knowledgeable and proactive which is invaluable.” Kate McNabb, Marketing Manager, e2train
(34) “I use Twitter to share my thoughts, ideas, information with others and to learn or get inspired by others. I love the way professionals use Twitter as a backchannel during conferences, using tags, adding depth to presentations and discussions. Microblogging is the informal learning tool for me.” Jeroen Bottema, Teacher trainer for the School of Education Amsterdam,
(35) Twitter – “I was reluctant to join in, but have been amazed at the amount of information, access to leaders in the field, and potential for professional development.” Melissa Venable, Curriculum Manager with Kaplan Higher Education
(36) “I get to know the people whose blogs I follow a little better by following them and others on Twitter. I can harvest useful URLs, and get help when I’m struggling with learning how to create something online, or trying to fix a misperforming application. And it’s just fun!” Joan Vinall-Cox, social media and communications consultant, Canada
(37) Twitter - “Once my productivity nemesis, has become a valuable learning tool. Over time, I have built up a small network of strong links and a slightly larger network of weak links. I think the primary value comes in two forms: (1) a wider network and, (2) immediacy.” Janet Clarey, Senior Researcher at Brandon Hall Research.
(38) “I have a great set of people to follow and learn lots everyday about learning tools and other tech stuff. Twitter is a major driver in taking my learning into new and unexpected areas; I’m learning about stuff I didn’t know I didn’t know.” Andrew Hampton, Headteacher, Thorpe Hall School, Southend-on-Sea, Essex, UK.
(39) “I use Twitter for serendipitous learning when I don’t know where to go for something to do – it’s a lucky bag.” Michelle Gallen, e-learning consultant, Belfast, Northern Ireland.
(40) Twitter – “I learn something new several times a day and stay connected with people that form my most valuable network. This is the one tool I would choose if I could only keep one (as long as everyone else kept it also!)”. Barry Dahl, CIO at Lake Superior College in Duluth, MN in the US.
(41) Twitter – “A performance support tool, learning platform and social network all rolled in one.” Harold Jarche, independent consultant, Canada .
(42) Twitter - “truly an example how learning, research, has changed through the collaboration, connecting and communication tools of the social network era” CSI Twitter – Twitter for Crime Scene Investigation, Silvia Tolisano, Langwitches blog, 4 December 2009
(43) “Overall, I was impressed by how much Twitter added to my conference-going experience … It took me some time to find my “voice”, make some personal policies about what, when and how I would engage with the community through Twitter. And suddenly, I wasn’t learning alone anymore.” The Two-Day Total Twitter Immersion: Using Twitter for Social Learning, Gillian Martin Mehers, You learn something new everyday, 6 December 2009
(44) Yammer - “twitter for companies, very simple to use, can be very powerful as soon as coworkers experience its strength. My problem is to seduce them to use it.” Herman Post, Senior consultant, Netherlands
(45) “I have always loved Flickr for sharing photographs, but find the advanced search option of only displaying Creative Commons licensed photos very helpful in creating material for my blog or classes.” Britt Wattwood, Online learning specialist at Virginia Commonwealth University’s Center for Teaching Excellence in Richmond VA.
(46) Flickr - “it’s an extraordinary image collection and I can search for Creative Commons photos which I can use for Powerpoint presentations“ Gabriela Grosseck, Senior lecturer , West University of Timisoara, Romania
(47) “I’ve used Picasa in school to share photos (albums) that I put together to supplement different aspects of my curriculum.” Mary Howard, Sixth grade teacher in Grand Island, New York
(48) Jing – “I’m finding I’m using this more and more. It’s similar to Wink, Captivate and Snagit. However, where these are great for producing finished, polished products, Jing just sits there for when it’s needed and works quickly. It’s ideal for producing “disposable learning objects” (not my term, but it’s starting to appear more frequently). If I need to show someone how a software function works, I capture it (either as a single image or a movie – with narration, then can choose whether to publish it to TechSmith’s Screencast.com site, to my own ftp site, or to a file. It’s simple. It’s easy to use. And my clients think it’s great.” Mark Berthelemy, Senior Learning Consultant at Capita Learning & Development, UK
(49) Jing – “Free tool for creating screencasts. I’ve used it to create tutorials that are then saved on Screencast.com. It’s very easy to use” Heather Ross, instructional designer, Saskatchewan, Canada
(50) Jing - “I use it to record quick “just in time” screencasts showing people how to accomplish specific web tasks, like organizing a wiki or signing up for a blog account. Much easier and more effective than trying to coach through email or over the phone.” Michele Martin, Freelance Learning Consultant, USA
(51) Screentoaster - “online screen recorder with possibilities for the video integration in lectures, presentations, online sites” Malinka Ivanova, Lecturer at Technical University, Sofia, Bulgaria.
(52) Screentoaster - “screen recorder, useful for training. Would like to encourage learners to use it themselves to record software techniques they struggle to remember”. Leia Fee, Work based learning tutor and NVQ assessor, Swansea ITeC, South Wales
(53) Slideshare – “This is a great way to share student work on a webspace”. Mary Howard, Sixth grade teacher in Grand Island, New York
(54) Slideshare – “Source of great learning resources”. Maria de los Angeles Castro, instructional designer at CSI Piemonte, Italy
(55) “Slideshare is an excellent sharing tool. Students can create and post their PPTs for class, and students can comment on them. It is an excellent tool for sharing ideas.” Beth Ritter-Guth, Teacher at Community College in Schnecksville, PA.
(56) Slideshare – “Great for sharing presentations. But I love the Slidecast facility where you can add an mp3 file to run with your slides. Great for vocab drilling because you can show the flashcards at the same time.” Adam Sutcliffe, Modern Languages teacher, The Gordon Schools, Scotland
(57) “The ability to quickly create a small learning piece and then distribute it to thousands of people instantaneously is great for quick pieces of instruction. I embed YouTube and TeacherTube videos into wikis and blogs all the time.” Karl Kapp, professor of Instructional Technology and the Assistant Director at Bloomsburg University in Bloomsburg PA
(58) “I also love the idea of TeacherTube. Educators need a safe and secure place where our students can participate in the social aspect of video sharing and engaging students with video responses.” Colette Cassinelli, high school computer teacher, Beaverton, Oregon
(59) YouTube – “great instructional videos on how to use blogs, etc.; plus lots of fun things to use to start classes and gain student attention” Sarah Davis, Associate Dean at the College of Charleston in Charleston, SC
(60) YouTube – “Being able to integrate a talk by a top-notch research in my online course within minutes is really a great feature” Daniel Lemire, Computer Science Professor, University of Quebec at Montreal
(61) YouTube – “Video student presentations and upload for the student’s themselves to assess their work. Search for physics, history, language etc videos to use as tools in the class.” Jason Denys, Mathematics and Science teacher, Australian International School, Hong Kong.
(62) YouTube – “how could I teach my New Media and Culture course without it?” Dawn Burton, English/ESL (HS) teacher in Louisiana.
(63) YouTube - “Engage millennial learners with video to either introduce or wrap-up a topic discussions.” Terry Morris, Associate Professor, Harper College
(64) Delicious – “crowdsourced learning, best links” Martin Schlichte, CEO of Lecturio.de
(65) “I’m constantly adding webpages or blogposts to my Delicious. Information I can use for presentations, lectures, blogposts and papers. My students are used to finding a link to a specific Delicious tag in their ‘required reading’ list. I teach my students to search in Delicious as an alternative to Google. I like the collecting aspect of saving websites to Delicious (more, more!) ” Jeroen Bottema, Teacher trainer for the School of Education Amsterdam,
(66) “Social bookmarking is one of the most useful tools on the web. I can save, tag, and easily re-find sites that are useful, and I can see what others with similar interests to mine are saving. It’s almost a research assistant!” Joan Vinall-Cox, social media and communications consultant, Canada
(67) “Delicious is the ideal instrument to illustrate how the internet can change the way we teach and learn: the first step is show how easy it is to use as a comfortable place to store bookmarks, the second is to wait a few weeks and the third is to show how easy it is to share them, collect them as a group, compare tags that are used for the same websites etc. etc.” Herman Post, Senior consultant te-learning at hogeschool Leiden (University of Applied Sciences)
(68) “After a year of use, delicious has become indispensable. It is now my default homepage and search engine on the three computers I routinely use. My network feeds directly to my RSS reader so that I stay connected to the websites they find interesting (as do they to mine). I used it successfully as a class communications/connections tool with my graduate students.” Britt Wattwood, Online learning specialist at Virginia Commonwealth University’s Center for Teaching Excellence in Richmond VA.
(69) “At EdTechTalk.com, we use del.icio.us to aggregate educational technology links bookmarked within our community of educators – see del.icio.us/edtechtalk where we have over 3,100 bookmarked web sites. The links that are shared each week within the network form the content for our live EdTechWeekly web cast.” Jennifer Maddrell, instructional designer, USA
(70) “Cannot imagine living or working without delicious anymore, ideal for classes building and sharing research and items of interest” Anne Paterson, Learning Design Officer, Centre for Learning Innovation Department of Education and Training NSW Australia.
(71) Delicious “Not only does it help me transfer my research and excellent web-treasures, but it has also created a network among other educators with the same interests and goals. Great tool to make the world flatter.” Kora Stoll, Fifth grade teacher in Miami, Florida
(72) “Diigo is my primary social bookmarking tool and how I generate my daily bookmark posts for my blog. I do so much online research for both the courses I develop and for my own personal learning; a good system to track all the resources I find is indispensable.” Christy Tucker, Instructional designer, US
(73) “Sorta like del.icio.us, but enhanced for teams. I’ve created Diigo groups for several work teams to use as our social bookmarking tool.” Matt Lisle, Instructional Technology Specialist at the University of Texas Libraries in Austin, TX
(74) “I am a fan of formal and informal learning. I’m also a fan of flat out random learning that can help prompt new ideas and catalyze creativity. StumbleUpon is a great tool for this purpose.” Jeff Cobb, works in business development for LearnSomething
(75) “My students LOVED using Etherpad for collaborative editing activities. I have blogged a lesson in which I used this tool at Collaborative editing through Etherpad. Students uploaded a writing assignment that they were working on and collaboratively edited with another classroom in this virtual space. Etherpad also allowed me to have guest editors participate in the process.” Mary Howard, Sixth grade teacher in Grand Island, New York
(76) Etherpad - “Realtime collaborative text tool. Students can write, edit, compare points of view, have online debates. I get some students putting the account into the past tense, others adding positive bias, others adding negative bias – all at the same time. I also use it during exam leave for students to leave questions for me to answer – this is better than email because the other students then get the benefit too”. Russel Tarr, Head of History at the International School of Toulouse
(77) Google Docs – “students submit work this way; surveys throughout the class; class brainstorming on a shared document; gradebook simulations on spreadsheets, etc.; too wonderful for words; “WebCT didn’t work” or “but I sent you an email” are excuses that don’t work here; students can get to class content here and on my site anywhere there is internet access.” Sarah Davis, Associate Dean at the College of Charleston in Charleston, SC
(78) “I use Google Docs for documents and spreadsheets, which I can easily share or publish. I use Forms to easily create surveys and bring the data into the spreadsheets. I also use it to get distance learners to collaborate.” Brian Mulligan, Open Learning Project Coordinator, Institute of Technology Sligo, Ireland
(79) “I’ve really been using Google docs in a big way in the past year. We’ve used them for shared ‘Word’ documents that we can work on collaboratively and also as ‘Forms’ to gather information from people – which then goes automatically into a spreadsheet.” Carol Skyring, Founder & CEO, LearnTel
(80) “Google Docs for collaborating on line. Great for collecting data for a statistics lesson for example - create a form which all the students complete – all the data will be collected on a single spreadsheet.” Colleen Young, Senior Tutor and Mathematics Teacher, Newstead Wood School in the UK
(81) “I love the ability to connect students with collaborative writing projects. Google Docs allows the students to work together around their busy schedules. I love that there are a variety of output formats, as well, so accessibility is not an issue” Beth Ritter-Guth, Teacher at Community College in Schnecksville, PA.
(82) Google Docs “supports writing academic papers, bid documents, impossible deadlines and working with interesting, busy people. For students making the transition to Web apps the collaborative features support peer support and negotiation.” Andrew Middleton, Staff developer, Sheffield Hallam University, UK
(83) Google Docs “A great way to create a channel of communication between teacher and student between classes. Useful for writing assignments and feedback between classes.” Jonathan Lecun, Online teacher for UK Teachers Online
(84) Google Docs “allows our kids and teachers to share documents for joint projects, but also allows kids to continue work at home and then get it from school the next day again. No more lost papers or troubles at home with printers that don’t have ink!” Gail Potratz, Eighth grade LA teacher
(85) PBworks “great way for prospective teachers to create and share safely their teaching portfolio; I am able to provide them feedback here, as well; unlike other online portfolios, such as LiveText, pbworks is free and can go with them after graduation and into their own classroom.” Sarah Davis, Associate Dean at the College of Charleston in Charleston, SC
(86) PBworks “We are running our intranet or ‘Knowledge Pod’ on this. Cool, flexible and easy too use. Even a drunken monkey can use it.” Anol Bhattacharya, COO of GetIT | Comms (Singapore).
(87) “We use PBworks to create wikis for class projects. They are replacing pathfinders that were static pages – the fact that users can edit pages has created another level of interaction in the development of resources for learning.” Jenny Luca, Head of Information Services, Toorak College, Melbourne, Australia.
(88) “With so many of my projects calling for collaborative development of e-learning solutions, I’ve found myself spending more and more time on wikis. With free sites for educators, and unparalleled community tools, WetPaint wikis are the backbone of Twitter for Teachers, and The Golden Fleece Wiki.” Rodd Lucier, regional e-Learning contact, Ontario, Canada
(89) “Every student in my class gets their own wikispace and are taught how to embed code, widgets, pictures, etc. Our literature circles utilize a wikispace for homework assignments with students being provided a ‘menu’ of web 2.0 choices for each homework assignment that they can complete and place on their wikispace. This project is also blogged at A wiki lesson for literature circles.” Mary Howard, Sixth grade teacher in Grand Island, New York
(90) Wikispaces – “This service enables me to provide an interactive site for my students. Once I have created it, they can become active contributors to the site.” Leigh Zeitz, Associate Professor of Instructional Technology at the University of Northern Iowa
(91) Wikispaces – “I use it for classes I am conducting in which I embed YouTube and TeacherTube videos, Adobe PDF papers, MS Word documents, images and all sorts of stuff and then my students contribute to the discussion portion and continually add links and other information. The flexibility and versatility is great for running a collaborative class. MSIT Second Life wiki” Karl Kapp, professor of Instructional Technology and the Assistant Director at Bloomsburg University in Bloomsburg PA
(92) Wikispaces - “I have built a space that I use as my “electronic filing cabinet” for samples of work I have done. I’ve also built a space that I use for my online portfolio so that others can learn about the quality and scope of my work.” Shari Ward, training and development professional, US
(93) “I’ve never met any of my coworkers in person; everyone on our team telecommutes. Wikispaces is one of our primary documentation and collaboration tools. It’s easy to post tips, resources, processes, and brainstorming. The RSS feed lets me know whenever changes are made, which is a huge help.” Christy Tucker, Instructional designer, US
(94) Voicethread – “a great venue for a presentation that allows docs, video, audio, photos; great for my students to teach their students; by the time students pass middle school, they are sick of creating PPTs; easy, flexible, shareable” Sarah Davis, Associate Dean at the College of Charleston in Charleston, SC
(95) “Voicethread brings discussions on such media as video to an entirely new level. It allows you and your students to collaboratively share your thoughts on video whilst watching simultaneously.” Mark Schumann, e-Learning Developer, secondary school, Melbourne, Australia,
(96) Voicethread -“Social audio and social imagery personified. A perfect demonstration of how digital media can be integrated into the curriculum and at the same time explains the value of digital storytelling.” Andrew Middleton, Staff developer, Sheffield Hallam University, UK
(97) Voicethread -“A great tool for encouraging collaboration in your classroom. Upload photos and add text, audio or voice comments with a web cam. My new personal favorite way to get students to share comments with each other.” Colette Cassinelli, high school computer teacher, Beaverton, Oregon
(98) Facebook “provides easy communication with students and colleagues, and private communication in groups” Pat Parslow, Researcher at OdinLab, School of Systems Engineering, University of Reading. UK
(99) “When training people around the globe, building social connections between learners is critical. Facebook helps learners put a face with a name and learn personal fact about other learners … a fantastic way to find other people who are interested in what you want to learn. Great places to share ideas.” Janice Petosky, Instructional designer and developer of leadership development programs, West Chester, Pennsylvania
(100) Facebook - “I use it almost daily online and via my iPhone to learn what my nearly 300 contacts –family, friends, and business contacts – are up to. I learn about and from other people by following links they post that they find interesting; by seeing how they feel about news stories; etc.” Gabe Anderson, Director of Customer Support for Articulate
(101) “Still, by far, the undisputed number one. Last year I wrote: “I’ve posted about my love of Facebook before. But look, we teach these technology integration classes and we tell our students to find out what their students have and work from there. Well, where are my college undergrads? Facebook. Since I’ve started requiring my undergrads to add me as a friend, I’ve had more communication with my undergrads. It’s been crazy, actually. Students who NEVER would have gotten a hold of me before, are now writing on my wall just to say, ‘Hey Dr. Curry! What’s up?’ I love it.” John Curry, Assistant Professor of Educational Technology at Oklahoma State University.
(102) LinkedIn – “Great way to interact, ask questions, answer questions, start discussions and network” Corinne Burkhert, Social Media Strategetist / Relationship Marketing Consultant, UK
(103) Ning – “I set up a class social network for the fall; much easier to make announcements here than contacting students by email, which they don’t often read; students can submit Voicethread projects here; can carry on class chats and discussions in and out of class; students can get to know each other the first day of class and download their pictures; most are familiar with other social networks, so this is easy for them” Sarah Davis, Associate Dean at the College of Charleston in Charleston, SC
(104) “I am a member of a few learning communities et up via Ning – great environment for meeting people, collaborating and learning” Debora Gallo, Senior Learning and Development Specialist at ING Australia
(105) “Ning, a social networking site offers teachers K-12 free and secure (no ads!) social networking for their classrooms. Much more user friendly and yet high tech than other networking sites, it can be used by students to share and make a learning community. Great discussion features, embedding, videos, flexible and personal design. This is the future of learning! FREE” David Deubelbeiss, teacher trainer at the Seoul Metropolitan Office of Education
(106) “We achieved more with Ning in 3 months than we could achieve in 2 years with Moodle. It has helped us bring about a genuine learning community among our students and has enriched their experience considerably.” Jonathan Lecun, Online teacher for UK Teachers Online
(107) Ning – “allowed me to set up a social network for fellow librarians in just 15 minutes and the features were enough to attract 245 colleagues from all over the Netherlands and Belgian, mostly people I do not know in real life. I love this application” Edwin Mijnsbergen, librarian, Netherlands.
Personalised start pages
(108) iGoogle – “Students and I keep track of RSS feeds, gmail, and other teacher info here” Sarah Davis, Associate Dean at the College of Charleston in Charleston, SC
(109) “I use iGoogle to manage my personal learning and work environment. On my home page, I have Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Bookmarks, Google Reader, and Google Docs and use each daily.” Janet Clarey, Senior Researcher at Brandon Hall Research.
(110) iGoogle “This is a personal learning environment favorite of mine simply because I can organize my favorites on my home page.” Janice Petosky, Instructional designer and developer of leadership development programs, Pennsylvania
(111) Netvibes “my personal pin board and something I would now not cope without – like your filofax in the 90’s, but better. I can watch students’ updates to our wiki, link to my favourite blogs, collect all my favourite websites and bookmarks with a Delicious widget, check my i-calendar, see updates on Twitter and watch Facebook updates when I have a break – all on one very pretty page on my desk top….“ Jane Challinor, Programme Leader, De Montfort University, UK
(112) “I use Pageflakes as a class portal (task lists, homework, communication with parents, etc) and for myself. For my personal pageflakes site, I’ve set it up so I can view different delicious tags. Makes it very easy.” Kris Stanhope, teaches Year 6, Discovery Bay International School in Hong Kong
Integrated social/collaboration environment
(113) “It has been really exciting over the past few months to be developing and piloting Elgg within UEL. We feel it enhances the sense of community across the university and opens up new avenues for collaboration, sharing and communicating. Although early days yet, it has been enthusiastically received by users on the pilot. We are still learning how best to use it to enhance the learning experience with students and have been able to adapt to use by a wide range of types of groups in the pilot. Blogs, wikis, video, podcasts, RSS feeds , social networking tools, discussions forums, bookmarking etc etc – and all in one place! The permissioning system is one of the best features of elgg and allows you to determine a range of access settings which is ideal for a university.” Sarah Frame, Director of UELConnect at the University of East London
(114) “Google Apps provides many features all in the one place. A customisable start page. Generous 6MB of space in provided in the gmail account. Files can easily be backed up to the email account – very useful for students uploading work. Shared calendar feature with text messaging provided. Use your own domain name to provide domain specific email addresses. We use our google apps home page as the portal to all our college eLearning facilities” Patricia Donaghy, teaches ICT, Inchicore College of Further Education, Dublin, Ireland.
(115) Google Apps for Educators - “the most powerful educational tool is one that provides access to the collection of services provided through the Google Apps suite… especially now with the addition of Google Site” Mark Arnold, Educational Technology Specialist based in Ellsworth, ME, USA.
(116) Moodle – “I use this Open Source course management system for my training courses. I like its interactive components, including chats, forums, wikis, workshops. I am also looking into ways to use it for group coaching.” Anastasia Prynikova, learning facilitator and coach, Connecticut USA
(117) Sharepoint – “has become my platform of choice for knowledge sharing. The My Site stores all my content, shared or not shared, and makes it accessible from anywhere” Jan Van Belle, Information Worker Consultant, Belgium
(118) Google Wave – “this is premature, but from my trial account I can tell that it will be viable and completely different way of providing a “resource-spine” for learners on courses.” Seb Schmoller, Chief Executive of the Association for Learning Technology.