Archive for June, 2014

Weekend Reflection – The Economic Threat of Climate Change: ‘Business-as-Usual Is Actually Radical Risk-Taking’

Saturday, June 28th, 2014


Phone junkies test your attention span

Thursday, June 26th, 2014


Weekend – Take a deep breath

Saturday, June 21st, 2014

It’s exam time for students, marking for academics, and reports for teachers.

Just focus – one last push – then a break.

double rainbow awesome

See the full size, wide screen version here –
A bit of background about the photo –!0jvky

To all budding eLearning designers (administrators, entrepreneurs) – Read this before doing anything else.

Thursday, June 19th, 2014

I think I may have mentioned in the past that I believe Audrey Watters is probably the best professional EdTech journalist on the planet at the moment.

She, like myself, has been uncomfortable about the re-writing of history by the latest round of cashed up ‘Flash Harry’s” seeking to lure unwitting administrators and naive academics into the mirage of educational nirvana.

Un-Fathom-able: The Hidden History of Ed-Tech #CETIS14


I would point out one area that never gets a mention, the Australian Flexible Learning Strategy and in particular the Flexible Learning Toolboxes.
Every year a about half a dozen government funded VET related resources are produced, and their use and implementation evaluated.


This has been going continuously since 1999

I’d recommend anyone who wants to get a serious perspective on the successful development and implementation of eLearning resources have a chat the Rodney Spark at eWorks who has been managing this from the start.

Something to help you understand 1st years

Tuesday, June 17th, 2014

The teenage brain explained


Spacing Learning to improve outcomes

Monday, June 9th, 2014

This report from Will Thalhiemer is worth a read.

So what is the spacing effect? It is the finding that spaced repetitions produce more
learning—better long-term retention—than repetitions that are not spaced. It is also the
finding that longer spacings tend to produce more long-term retention than shorter
spacings (up to a point where even longer spacings are sometimes counterproductive).

“So what is the spacing effect? It is the finding that spaced repetitions produce more learning—better long-term retention—than repetitions that are not spaced.  It is also the finding that longer spacings tend to produce more long-term retention than shorter spacings (up to a point where even longer spacings are sometimes counterproductive).”

CC Attribution  NASA Goddard Photo and Video
CC Attribution NASA Goddard Photo and Video

“Spaced repetitions need not be verbatim repetitions. Repetitions of learning points can include the following:

  1. Verbatim repetitions.
  2. Paraphrased repetitions (changing the wording slightly).
  3. Stories, examples, demonstrations, illustrations, metaphors,and other ways of providing context and example.
  4. Testing, practice, exercises, simulations, case studies, role plays, and other forms of retrieval practice.
  5. Discussions, debate, argumentation, dialogue, collaboration, and other forms of collective learning.
  6. Repetitions can also be delivered to different perceptual modalities (visual, auditory, olfactory, kinesthetic) and through different learning media (text, audio, video, computer, internet, classroom, etc.).

“Regardless of the way repetitions are manifested, if two or more presentations of the same learning point are repeated with some sort of time delay between them, they are likely to produce the spacing effect.”

See more from Will at

What is Net Neurtality and how does it effect Australia?

Thursday, June 5th, 2014

John Oliver of ‘Last Week Tonight’, provides probably the best (or at least the most entertaining) description of the US Net Neutrality issue is and why Net Neutrality should be protected.

Net neutrality

My favourite quote from this is “they shouldn’t call it protecting net neutrality, they should call it preventing cable company f**kery.”

What does this mean in Australia?

“The Conversation”, which despite being populated by academics, often has informed articles, has this to say.

“The possibility of true net neutrality in Australia has been lost a long time ago.”

But the risk of going down the US path is limited by 2 factors

“Solid competition across most of Australia: Thanks to Telstra’s ADSL network being open to use by competitors, most Australians have a choice of which broadband provider they use, and so can switch providers if their provider restricts part of their internet service. This follows through to the National Broadband Network. Once a house is connected to the NBN householders can choose from a number of competing providers.”

“Strong consumer protection laws: Australian consumer law – usually enforced by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission – is a world leader in protecting consumers. Any attempt by a large carrier to engage in anti-competitive conduct such as blocking or limiting access to a competitor’s service will invite long and costly action by the ACCC.”

I suspect this article from the Sydney Morning Herald has it right.

“If the US moves further away from the concept of net neutrality, and the perpetrators get away with it, then you can expect to see roadblocks start to appear on Australian internet services. They’ll be subtle at first, but if they’re met with little resistance they’ll grow – especially as bandwidth-hungry streaming video services take off.–a-debate-we-cant-afford-to-ignore-20140226-33hco.html

Oh no, they sent me an image but I need the text! – try Project Naptha.

Wednesday, June 4th, 2014

If you are a teacher/researcher/project collaborator and you are dealing with people whose digital skills are a bit shaky, sooner or later you are going to need this (probably at 2 a.m. just before a deadline).

Add this to your tool kit.


Crack for Culture Vultures – Google Cultural Institute

Monday, June 2nd, 2014

If you interested in Art/Archaeology/Museums, and you are at work, do not go to this site now.


This is a fantastic resource for Arts teachers

“Discover exhibits and collections from museums and archives all around the world. Explore cultural treasures in extraordinary detail, from hidden gems to masterpieces.”