#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

Developing Leaders for the 21st Century – TJ Event

News report originally published in Training Journal December 2012

“Coming along to a training programme no longer cuts it” said Larry Reynolds, Managing Partner of 21st Century Leader, about Developing Leaders for the 21st Century; the last L&D 2020 event of this year. Reynolds walked a the group through six principles of a Leadership Development programme that he and David Archer, Director of Socia Ltd, used to judge the Leadership category of the Training Journal Awards. Nick Brice, TJ Award winner and Managing Director of 360 Degree Vision, was one of the delegates and commented that Leadership Development was about focusing on “how do you do with your staff what you do with your customers”.

Reynold’s principles included ensuring that the objectives were routed in business need and had senior management commitment. This is something that was highlighted in the morning session from the Co-Operative Food group Organisational Effectiveness team. Sharon Douglas said of the beginning of the Leadership Development Programme for store managers at Co-Op that “Operations got that we needed to do something different, but perhaps not so different as the HR Director’s vision was.” Tracy Taylor explained that the programme meant a “move from skills based knowledge to transformational” and that the “leadership element needed to be engaging and authentic” in order to create managers that “appreciate operations, but could step back and lead – this was a change of mind-set.” Douglas highlighted of the success of the Co-op programme “as the momentum grew, the programme became business as usual and as people saw change-ready managers there was less pressure from Operations to fill vacancies.”

Reynolds facilitated a lot of discussion with the delegates, some of which were TJ Awards runner ups. Reynold’s principles also included to use a full palette of developmental activities, to innovate and to ensure close links to the job. Reynold’s advised “you can’t afford to not understand online collaboration. Get curious about that world” and Douglas said of developing a programme “don’t try to take it all on yourself: involve the right people… and think about who the right people are.”

Jo Cook

Learning to Learn in the 21st Century – TJ event

News report originally published in Training Journal May 2012

Celine Jacques, Principle Psychologist at CAPP, gave an overview of using positive psychology to understand what makes an “ordinary being flourish and succeed in normal life”. Jacques spoke of “flow”, being so engrossed in an activity that there is a loss of time and self-consciousness, and how a person “performs and learns to the best of their ability” in this state.

Myths of the brain were debunked beautifully by neuroscientist Trish Riddell, the most popular being “it’s all downhill after 60”, where Riddell highlighted that “the brain is still perfectly capable of learning, if you think you’re too old to learn, it’s in your head but not your brain!”

A lively debate was had around Clara Seeger’s work of using David Rock’s SCARF model for social drivers of behaviour “to avoid feeling of threat in today’s corporate world” that she uses in coaching, specifically in the banking area to create a balance between “money and meaning”. There was also insight into the social brain, with Seeger imparting that “the brain doesn’t distinguish social versus physical, exclusion from a group is still pain”.

“Coaching with EASE” is a model developed by EDF Energy Senior Training and Development specialist Phil Ball. Ball spoke passionately about using the model to create a coaching culture and of the success with Transactional Analysis and scripts, or beliefs, that we all hold. “Often people are struggling at work because of a limiting script”.

Kaizen Training’s Kimberley Hare delivered a rousing and powerfully creative session aimed at practitioners to enable them to create training that is “fast, fun, fit for purpose and sticky” and advised to be “obsessed to apply back to work place or life” in training. Hare practiced what she preached, making sure that “70% of the time the learner is doing something different to them listening to the trainer”.

Chief Executive for the Campaign for Learning, Tricia Hartley reminded of Learning At Work Day in May and that events in many companies take place all around the year. The link between educating the young child, young adult and the working professional was made clear and Hartley echoed the sentiment of the day by saying “absolute key and underpinning everything we’ve talked about today is responsibility. If the trainer can step back – it’s about giving the gift of responsibility”.

Jo Cook