Learning Technologies 2018 – videos and more!

Learning Technologies is a huge free exhibition and paid-for conference in London every year. I’ve been going for more years than I care to remember and it gets better every year.

You can see the conference programme here.

You can see all of the tweets on #LT18UK. The back channel is a great way to get involved with an event if you aren’t there in person.

Day one exhibition walkabout

Ar Deputy Editor of TJ, I thought doing a live Periscope video broadcast at the exhibition might be a great way to get the message out from some of the exhibitors, as well as highlight the event to people who aren’t sure about coming, or can’t make it.

This walkabout included:

There was some great feedback on the exhibition walkabout, so we decided to do more on day two!

Quick reflection

Towards the end of day one Jon Kennard, Editor of Training Journal, and I did a quick review video:

Towards Maturity research launch

L&D research company Towards Maturity exclusively launched their latest annual benchmark report at LT18 and I was proud to do the Periscope live video broadcast of it from TJ. This was delivered by Laura Overton and Genny Dixon.

Day one reflection with Mike


  • David Kelly and Steve Wheeler
  • Charles Jennings
  • Sukh Pabial
  • Towards Maturity and Laura Overton
  • And more

Day two walkabout one

Walkabout two

The final walkabout

#LT18UK second day reflection with Mike

Mike and I reflection day two, talking about:

One of Mike’s tweets was included in the DPG Storify round up too!

Ross Garner from GoodPractice did a great “1 second a day” video, which gives a lovely insight to activities:



Learning technologies – what do managers really think?

In November 2017 GoodPractice launched their third piece of research about what managers think and do. This piece of research specifically focused on the perceptions about technology from those managers, that their organisations provide them with for learning.

This post has some comments and links to resources for a one stop shop on the research.

Audio interview

I spoke to GoodPractice Managing Director, Owen Ferguson, ahead of the report being published.

You can listen to the more in-depth Training Journal podcast interviews part one and part two.


I was very lucky to get a pre-release copy of the report, and another chat with Owen, before the launch in London. From that I wrote a couple of online features about the results.

  • Training Journal feature I wrote on the day of release
  • Training Journal feature part two

From GoodPractice

Obviously getting information about this report from the people that did the research is the best thing! So, here are a few resources:

A blog from Stef Scott, report co-author.

Stef looks at five myths on learning technologies and debunks them, based on data from the report.

The original report can be downloaded as a PDF from the GoodPractice website.

At the launch of the report, GoodPractice recorded an episode of their brilliant podcast, live, with the audience interaction. It was great fun to be there (and I asked a question towards the end too) and brave of the guys to do.


The #GPWMRT hashtag has had all sorts of infromation and sharing. Here’s a scatter of top tweets, including my own from the @TrainingJournal account:

#LTMOOC16 Technology to enhance

For the Beyond The Next Button MOOC from Curatr we are asked to research some technology and share about it. This is good as, to be honest, without being MADE to do it, I would have read some stuff and moved on. I wouldn’t have truly got involved. 


I enjoyed reading about Periscope, for live video broadcast via Twitter. This has been used a lot by Kate Graham at Learning Technologies and I look forward to using this for some live events myself.

2016-04-02 12.48.02

I had a play with it last night on my iPhone and it was pretty easy to install the app, link with Twitter and start broadcasting. It took a couple of goes to play with a few basic tools, such as how to stop broadcasting!

It took a bit more looking and Googling to follow Kate Graham’s advice to save video to the device to be used later – – Periscope broadcast videos are only live for 24 hours.

I think one of the challenging things with something like Periscope is the “live broadcast” element of it. I used a Twitter account that I no longer use, so it’s basically a test rather than going out to all my followers or that of Training Journal, which is where I want to use the technology.

However there is also benefit in Working Out Loud and I will probably do this now from @LightbulbJo so that I can get feedback from my Personal Learning Network, share what I’m learning and also encourage others to do the same.

Phone technology

The other thing I’ve been playing with is a new phone. I have a Samsung Galaxy S5 that runs on Android paying system. Great phone, love it, no need to change other than upgrade hardware soon.

For a particular client and training programme soon, I need to know the hardware they have, which is a company provided iPhone 5c. So I got one off of eBay for a hundred quid, a cheap SIM for £1 (backup phone now on a different network, which is always useful) and started playing with it.

Largely I’m  using it as a small wifi tablet and must admit is turning into my Training Journal device (I’m Deputy Editor part time).

It’s interesting to consider whether it’s useful to be comfortable using technology that’s similar but different, meaning you have to be agile and flexible in your use; or if its confusing and annoying when things are in different places!

The unexpected highlight of the new-to-me iPhone is the time lapse camera. How can I use this to record something for ages, but have a super speed version to look at? Set it up in a corner whilst I deliver a webinar to see what I do behind the scenes? Put it at a training day to show people moving around? Don’t know yet, something that has got my creative juices flowing!

Also on the MOOC…

Ian Helps shared about Biteable for video editing and I want to try this out soon.

With the amount of tools available, I love this comment:

Gosh, where to begin? I think this just emphasises the need to identify the problem first. Then maybe think of a creative solution (i.e. if tech could do anything, could it do this?). Then trial 2-3 niche tools.

Craig Taylor, who designed and is facilitating the MOOC, shared a curated list of top technical tools: http://c4lpt.co.uk/top100tools/

Right, back to the programme and learning more!

Live online learning, friend or foe? At CLC Member’s Seminar – March 2016

I was invited to the Charity Learning Consortium’s March Member’s Seminar and facilitated a session about live online learning, or virtual classroom’s. I titled the session “friend or foe” as there can be so much challenge, negativity, mindset or attitude issues when looking towards something new, especially when that involves technology.

I haven’t got any slides here to share, as it was a covnersation I facilitated that had no slides and no structure. Instead, below, I’ve captured the tweets from the session to give you a flavour and also say thank you to the kind comments that people made about my facilitation too.

If you do want some more on this subject, look on my other pages about articles, videos and recorded webinars.

Thank you to Training Journal, Tim Scott and others for their tweets.

Live online learning – article links

hI’ve written some articles about live online facilitation recently and thought I’d share with you, either for your own reference or perhaps might help with colleagues, managers and clients:


From the Corporate Learning Consortium, what is live online learning:

From Training Journal, how to facilitate a group you can’t see:

From Learning Technologies magazine, how to design for the online classroom:

From HR Zone, How can we approach live online learning to ensure good practice?

Live Event Tweeting

Blog originally published in Training Journal February 2014

For some L&D individuals Twitter is a waste of time. For others it’s a great way to develop a professional profile and keep in touch with a personal learning network. In the last few years I’ve gone from one end of this journey to enjoying the other.

One of the things I’ve experienced in the last few years is Live Tweeting – attending an event of some kind and Tweeting messages about the contents, speakers, discussions and my own observations or questions. At first I was relatively tentative, partly as I didn’t have a large Twitter following and partly I didn’t know what tone to use, what to say and certainly didn’t want to offend. I would also often follow this up with a blog of my experiences, thoughts and reflections.

As I did this more at the events I was attending I got more followers, re-tweets, conversations and positive comments. People seemed to appreciate the points I was picking up from speakers and broadcasting, or the research and resource links I added to the conversation, or perhaps my own thoughts or questions about what I was attending. I remember the day that Donald H. Taylor, Chairman of, amongst other things, the Learning Technologies Conference, came and shook my hand and thanked me for my tweets. I felt very honoured. A year later I was tweeting from the conference and spent much more time with Don, and others, which resulted in officially Live Tweeting at this year’s January Conference – an amazing and fulfilling experience.

Image: Sergey Zolkin from unsplash.com

Image: Sergey Zolkin from unsplash.com










In between times I had honed my skills a little more – drawing on my background in journalism to try and report what was being said as well as my own professional judgement from years of different experiences in Learning and Development. I spent time Live Tweeting on Learning Skills Group webinars, usually hosted by Don, and the Virtual Learning Show put together independently by Colin Steed, CEO of the Learning Performance Institute – again I was very pleased when Colin asked me to live tweet from the online conference. I was practicing the very challenging skills of listening to the speaker and watching the content whilst trying to pick out sound bites that would fit into 140 characters for Twitter, that could be read out of context, rather than in a stream, and still make sense. It took a fair amount of work for me to get comfortable and quick doing so. I’ve had almost exclusively overwhelming positive feedback from being part of what’s called a back channel, whereby you report and converse on Twitter about an event. This is great for people to follow up afterwards, to find resources (something I find particularly gratifying to share) and follow the key points and insights from well-known thought leaders even if they can’t be there in person.

One piece of constructive feedback was around Tweeting quotes or elements that are stating the obvious. It’s a fair challenge and one to appreciate that some things might seem basic or obvious. However the conclusion I came to when these Tweets were commented upon was that this might be obvious for some who have done research, who are leading the way, who are actually doing some of these things. However for others this isn’t the case. They are still developing their skills or learning new ways of doing things. Even if we are, it can be good to see things that reinforce we are working or approaching in a way in which industry leaders are advocating. Or perhaps it’s seeing a quote, saying or reference to backup an approach we are trying to get signed-off or read in a new way.

At Learning Technologies this year it was gratifying, if a little embarrassing at times, for people to come up to me, say hello and that they are following my conference tweets and how much they appreciate them, or comment on how fast I’m able to do them. Partly this is due to the effort as described above. It’s also partly having the right kit. I use a mix of my phone, mostly for photo’s as it’s easy to point, focus and put on Twitter; my iPad, often with Logitech keyboard for speed and accuracy of typing (once the blue tooth connected!); and a laptop, as I find it even quick and easier, having been typing on computers since I was a child.

A friend in the exhibition tweeted me a picture of my profile image on the large screens, with one of my tweets, which were showing around the building. He said I was “famous”. It’s obviously a relative term but fun none-the-less! The most gratifying piece of feedback from this conference was being listed in the HR Zone’s top 50 conference tweets.  Not only was one of my tweets in at number two, I was listed three times in all. That made the effort I’ve put it on behalf of my own skills and of getting the information from the Conference out to a wider audience very worthwhile!

Jo Cook