Some brief stats about #12AoC 2016



Here are some brief stats about this years 12AoC course:

Total Enrolments: 1182

Female 74% Male 24% Other 2%


UK 80% Europe 8% Australasia 8% North America 2% Other 2%


Lecturer/Teacher 42% Learning Technologists 14% Librarian 26%

HE Professional Services 8%

Age group:

  • Under 18 1%
  • 18-25 2%
  • 26-35 18%
  • 36-45 30%
  • 46-55 33%
  • 56-65 14%
  • Over 65 1%

% taken a course delivered mostly or fully online before:

Yes 75%

No 25%


Reflections on the 12 Apps of Christmas – podcast



Thanks to James Leahy,  Anna Williams, Steve Dawes, Eric Stoller, Anthony Karauria, David Bevington, Fiona MacNeill, Jackie Oliver, Jean Edwards, Lesley Diack and Sue Tucker.

Enroll on this year’s (2016) 12AoC here.


ALT Online Winter Conference 2016



Just heard that our proposal for the ALT Winter conference “Getting published on the ALT blog” has been accepted. It will be a 45 minute webinar on Weds 7th Dec. at 4.15. Full details will be on the conference website. and draft programme site.

“The conference will take place online between the 6 and 8 December, giving ALT Members an opportunity to highlight some of the work they and their community have been involved with and to gain feedback from peers. The format of the event is designed to be multimodal, combining both asynchronous and synchronous communication, and to cross boundaries, sharing the work and expertise across ALT SIGs and Members Groups and the community”

Here is the proposal:

Getting published on the ALT Blog.

In this webinar five of the ALT blog editors (Chris Rowell, Anne Hole, Santanu Vasant, Stella Ekebuisi and Howard Scott) will give a short presentation on how to get published on the ALT blog.

Firstly, we will give an overview of the types of posts published on the ALT blog.  These mainly consist of case studies, conference/event reports, SIG reports, book reviews, opinion pieces and articles about the ALT community.

Secondly, we will give some ‘top tips’ for writing a blog post. This will include advice about writing for the ALT audience. We will also address the style of the blog post and some general tips about what works when writing online. Also some tips on how to include images and videos into your writing.

Thirdly we will look at the ALT blog analytics. We will give you information about who looks at the blog and how the articles are disseminated across the online learning communities.

Fourthly, we will describe the role of the assistant editor who will be assigned to you. They will read your post for ‘blog-fit’, make suggestions on the style, help you add images using copyright, give it a final proofread and load your submission onto the blog.

To conclude, the final part of our presentation will discuss the benefits of getting published on the blog. So it might be to get exposure, especially if you are starting out, it’s a great way to get your name out into the ALT community. Or to share your knowledge with the community, an idea, a project, an app review (our community love a good app review!) Or it might be simply to build your confidence in blog writing.

The final 10 minutes of the webinar will be for discussion and Q & A with the participants.



Battle of the Somme – ‘Lest we forget’.

Sometimes this blog moves away from EdTech and this is one such occasion. Today is 100 years since the Battle of the Somme and I’m off to see The Battle of the Somme film tonight at the Southbank.

The Battle of the Somme is a 1916 British documentary and propaganda film, shot by two official cinematographers, Geoffrey Malins and John McDowell. The film depicts the British Army in the preliminary and early days of the battle of the Somme (1 July – 18 November 1916). The film had its première in London on 10 August 1916 and was released generally on 21 August. The film depicts trench warfare, showing marching infantry, artillery firing on German positions, British troops waiting to attack on 1 July, treatment of wounded British and German soldiers, British and German dead and captured German equipment and positions. The film was a great success, was watched by c.  20 million British people in the first six weeks of exhibition and the film was distributed in eighteen more countries. A second film covering a later phase of the battle, was released in 1917 as The Battle of the Ancre and the Advance of the Tanks. In 1920 the film was preserved in the film archive of the Imperial War Museum and was inscribed on UNESCO’s Memory of the World Register. In 2005 the film was digitally restored and in 2008 was released on DVD. The Battle of the Somme is an early example of film propaganda, an historical record of the battle and a popular source of footage illustrating the First World War. (Wikipedia)

Books on Mobile learning


I’ve just help put together a new module for a MA Teaching & Learning called ‘Mobile Pedagogy’ and the initial feedback from the external examiner was very positive however they commented that the reading list need to be expanded.

Mike Sharples and Agnes Kukuluska-Hulme’s article on ‘Learning using mobile and handheld devices’  on the  ALT_Wiki has some useful texts but they’re a bit dated now. 

Teaching with apps

Helen Caldwell’s book that came out recently is a great addition to this topic – but can anyone recommend any other books or articles that have been published in the last 5 years or so?

Please leave a comment.

Short film – why use apps in HE?




#SocMedHE16 book your place now!



Just signed up for the 2016 Social Media for Learning HE conference in December. Along with my colleagues from the #LTHEchat we will be presenting a paper ‘With a little help from my followers’ – Facilitating the #LTHEChat. “The #LTHEchat is a lively twitterchat that explores important issues in Teaching and Learning in Higher Education, for staff and students. This short paper will share how #LTHEchat empowers a community of practice to embrace informal learning and supports co-learners to take ownership of their continuing professional development”.

Here is the proposal in full:

This short paper will share the evaluation of the #LTHEchat and the impact of this on professional development for the organising teams and the chat participants. The twitter chat has shown there is demand to focus conversations on Teaching and Learning (T&L) in Higher Education (HE). The research will include results from a survey and semi-structured interviews, to identify the impact and value gained by active or silent participation, for the organisers and participants. In addition the chats themselves and the learning analytics of the Storify will be monitored and analysed to evaluate asynchronous engagement with archives of live chats.

The #LTHEchat, created by the community for the community, is a collaborative project on T&L in HE via tweetchats.  “A tweetchat is a virtual meeting or gathering on Twitter to discuss a common topic. The chat lasts one hour and has questions to stimulate discussion” (Beckingham 2014). Each week there is a pre-determined topic with guests leading the chat.

Through #LTHEchat an online community of practice has evolved, including educators with a variety of roles. Drawing upon the literature, Wenger, Traynor and De Laat (2011) discuss five cycles of value creation in networks and communities, suggesting value can be:

  • Immediate: answering/being answered. The #LTHEchat has created synchronous, Twitter activity. The discussion is right when you want it and, when a link is shared to a blog or article, the depth and breadth of shared knowledge increases.
  • Potential: gaining skills/knowledge/connections which we may call upon in future. The #LTHEchat provides a fertile ground for sharing learning experiences and forms collaborative working relationships.
  • Applied: taking something and applying to practice. Every conversation is applied to the HE context.
  • Realised: reflecting on new implementations. The chats allowed for the sharing of reflective practice in an open forum.
  • Reframing: in light of value gained, how does that impact on our view of success. While this is less easy to measure, the #LTHEchat has impacted on practitioners thinking about T&L.

Wenger’s (2002) concept of ‘legitimate peripheral participation’ is relevant as the #LTHEchat facilitators ‘bounce’ from the edge to the centre of the community and from live participation to catch-up via the tweets. The #LTHEchat guests join the community in the ‘hotseat’ to develop the conversation which encourages the community to grow (Ultralabs, 2015)

The joining of chats, e.g. #HEAchat and new initiatives such as #HEStudentQ have opened the chats to both staff and students providing new opportunities for informal learning.

This short paper will share some case studies and short vignettes from the research undertaken to highlight how #LTHEchat empowers a community of practice to embrace informal learning and has supported co-learners to take ownership of their continuing professional development. Finally it will provide participants with ideas on how they could develop their tweetchats for informal learning.


Beckingham, S. (2014). Introducing tweetchats using #LTHEchat as an exemplar. Accessed 27th May 2016

Ultralabs (2015) The online communities. Accessed 27th May 2016

Wenger, E., Trayner, B., & de Laat, M. (2011). Promoting and assessing value creation in communities and networks : a conceptual framework. Open Universiteit.  Accessed 27th May 2016

Wenger, E., Lave, J. Lave, J. & Wenger, E. (2002) Legitimate peripheral participation in communities of practice. Eds Julia Clarke and Anne Hanson in Supporting Lifelong Learning, Vol. 1: Perspectives on Learning: Learning and Teaching Vol I. London: Routledge


Full details on #SocMedHE16 are now available on the conference website.


Twitter and 12AoC



The 12 Apps of Christmas 2016 went live today so that anyone interested in using apps in education can sign up for the course. You can follow the course on  Twitter @12AoC or on the hashtag #12AoC. We have had a great reaction on Twitter already:



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12 Apps of Christmas 2016 – enroll now!



Are you interested in exploring which free mobile apps could help you in your teaching or supporting your students?

Would you like to take part in a fun, free, practical online course this December?

Then the 12 Apps of Christmas could be for you.

Last year, over 1000 participants from around the world took part in a new open course hosted by Regent’s University London – the 12 Apps of Christmas. In just a few minutes a day, they learned about and tried out a range of free mobile apps with potential classroom use, built a community of practice, and had fun doing so.

The course was a success, winning the Credo Digital Information Literacy Award and inspiring people to run versions at other institutions.

Now, the original is back – better than ever ! From 1st to 16th December this year, we will be presenting Christmas 3.0!

The 12 Apps of Christmas 2016 will offer a completely new range of carefully selected apps, while keeping to the same simple, entertaining formula which made it so successful last year. Expect guest posts, engaging hands-on activities, and a chance to be part of a friendly, enquiring community of educators worldwide.

And for those of you who took part last year – yes, we’re afraid the Christmas cracker jokes will be back…

To enroll on the 12 Apps of Christmas 2016, go to

Watch the video here:

For further information contact Chris Rowell or on Twitter @chri5rowell and @12AoC #12AoC


12AoC Poster – final version