The Really Useful #EdTechBook

The Really Useful #EdTechBook, edited by David HopkinsTitle: The Really Useful #EdTechBook
Editor: David Hopkins
Word count: est. 61,000
eBook: £5.00 / $6.99 / €6.20
Paperback: £20 / $30 / €25
Publish date: 28 January, 2015
Available: Paper and eBook editions are available from the following online stores.

(Note: Tax will be applied to the eBook by the online store, based on your location).

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Book description:
Technology has invaded our working and recreational lives to an extent that few envisaged 20 or 30 years ago. We’d be fools to avoid the developments in personal, mobile, and wearable technology. Even if we tried we’d still have to deal with other developments and distractions in classroom and learning technology like smart boards, blogs, video, games, students-led learning, virtual learning environments, social media, etc. More than this, however, is how the advances in technology, the economic and physical miniaturisation of computing devices, have impacted education: the students, the teachers, the classrooms, the spaces, the connections, the aspirations, etc.

The Really Useful #EdTechBook‘ is about experiences, reflections, hopes, passions, expectations, and professionalism of those working with, in, and for the use of technology in education. Not only is it an insight into how, or why, we work with these technologies, it’s about how we as learning professionals got to where we are and how we go forward with our own development.

In this book respected individuals from different education sectors write about many aspects of learning technology; from Higher Education (Sue Beckingham, Peter Reed, Dr David Walker, Sheila MacNeil, Terese Bird, Wayne Barry, Inge de Waard, and Sharon Flynn), Further Education (Rachel Challen), to Museums (Zak Mensah),  workplace learning (Julian Stodd, Julie Wedgwood, and Lesley Price) and primary schools / early years education (Mike McSharry). With a foreword written by Catherine Cronin, from the National University Ireland, Galway, the breadth and depth of the experiences here are second to none.

The knowledge these leading learning practitioners, researchers, and professionals, share, under the same cover, is a unique opportunity for you to read about the variety of approaches to learning technology, the different perspectives on the same technology, and how technology is impacting our culture and learning infrastructure, from early-age classrooms to leading research Universities and from museums and workplace learning providers. It is about our passion for our work and our desire to make our work better through our own learning and development.

Contributory authors:

  • Catherine Cronin: Foreword
  • David Hopkins: Introduction
  • Wayne Barry: “…and what do you do?”: Can we explain the unexplainable?
  • Zak Mensah: “Why do we do what we do?”
  • Peter Reed: “The structure and roles of Learning Technologists within Higher Education Institutions”
  • Rachel Challen: “Learning Technologists as agents of change? Blending policy and creativity”
  • Julie Wedgwood: “Developing the skills and knowledge of a Learning Technologist”
  • Dr David Walker and Sheila MacNeill: “Learning Technologist as Digital Pedagogue”
  • Lesley Price: “Times they are a changing …or not?”
  • Sue Beckingham: “The Blended Professional: Jack-of-all-Trades and Master of Some?”
  • Julian Stodd: “How gadgets help us learn”
  • Terese Bird: “Students Leading the Way in Mobile Learning Innovation”
  • Inge de Waard: “Tech Dandy, or the Art of Leisure Learning”
  • Sharon Flynn: “Learning Technologists: changing the culture or preaching to the converted?”
  • Mike McSharry: “This is your five-minute warning!”


The Really Useful #EdTechBook

Reviews:

  • Steve Wheeler, Associate Professor of Learning Technology, Plymouth University:

“The Really Useful #EdTechBook does exactly what it promises on its cover. It draws together a useful, diverse, eclectic set of visions and commentaries that together provide the reader with a lucid and comprehensive vista of educational technology. It traces the history of learning technology, catalogues the present state of play, and envisages the future. David Hopkins has done extremely well to gather this band of authors together, because they represent a vast amount of experience. Many have been at the forefront of development and innovation in their respective fields – in Further and Higher Education, and corporate training. The mix of academic, practical and theoretical offerings is a useful recipe book for any aspiring Learning Technologist.”

  • Maren Deepwell, Chief Executive, Association for Learning Technology (ALT):

“The Really Useful #EdTechBook is an insightful and thought-provoking read for anyone with an interest in the role of technology for learning, teaching and assessment today. Decision makers will find it a useful resource to gain a deeper understanding of the key issues involved. It does more than bring together a collection of interesting accounts from across Further and Higher Education, it demonstrates why open collaboration and knowledge exchange are key characteristics of those who successfully meet the challenges learning technology poses in a rapidly evolving landscape. You don’t have to be a Learning Technologist to read this book, but you might wish you had more of their expertise at your side when you’re finished.”

  • Chrissi Nerantzi, Principal Lecturer in Academic CPD, Manchester Metropolitan University:

“A very insightful and extensive collection of authentic accounts by practitioners who identify themselves as Learning Technologists in a variety of educational settings.  This reminds us of the fast pace of change in this relatively new profession, the variety of roles and responsibilities as well as the passion of these individuals for supporting change, innovation and transformation in the digital age. Challenges and opportunities linked to professional identity, engagement and positioning are discussed.

“As an Academic Developer in Higher Education, the book made me reflect on our professional relationship with Learning Technologists. Sue Beckingham in her chapter talks about the hybrid or blended professional for example, a mix between Learning Technologists and Academic Developer and the need to work together. David Walker and Sheila MacNeill take it one step further and raise an  important question about the future of Learning Technologists: “Is there something fundamental that distinguishes Learning Technologists from educational developers? Do we still need both roles?”  This question, I feel, could form the basis for further collaborative exploration between Learning Technologists, Academic Developers and the wider academic community.”

  • Neil Withnell, Associate Head Academic Enhancement, University of Salford:

“It is a fascinating read and the title encapsulates the content of the book, I found it ‘really useful’ to read! The book is logical, insightful and provides the reader with a rich array of both personal experience and “tools” for use in education. The book will appeal to anyone who is interested in the use of technology in teaching and learning, highly recommended!”

  • Chris Rowell, Deputy Learning Technology Manager, Regent’s University in London:

“The ‘Really Useful #EdTechBook’ gives some really useful insights into the diverse nature of ‘third space’ professionals working with learning technology such as Learning Technologists, eLearning Consultants and Educational Developers. It doesn’t just list what they do but discusses how they interact with other staff, differences in the institutional culture and probably most importantly ‘how they make a difference’ to the learners experience.” 

  • Helen Blunden, Activate Learning Solutions:

“The Really Useful #EdTechBook is a collection of resources from Learning Technologists that can be applied in education, research and work.  One of the things that stood out for me in this book is finding out that Learning Technologists wear many hats: they undertake roles and responsibilities in learning, communication, information technology, teaching and assessment. What I enjoyed reading in particularly were the personal stories of how Learning Technologists made an impact in their work and to those around them.  For example, Zak Mensah encourages us to start with the why; Lesley Price brings back memories of the old learning tools and technologies and links them to the lessons she learned over the years, while Sue Beckingham encourages continual learning and innovation.  The book also includes a fabulous chapter that I pored over by Julie Wedgewood where she provides a Learning Technology Skills and Assessment checklist that you can undertake.  If you find any gaps, don’t worry! She also includes many other resources to close those gaps.  I highly recommend the Really Useful EdTech Book for those who would like to read about the personal stories ofLearning Technologists.


Free download
As well as buying the print or Kindle/eBook editions you can also download a full PDF version of the book (click the big orange button below!). We are providing this option in order to promote openness and collaborative learning practices. I hope you will join me in thanking the contributory authors and, if you like this free content, consider purchasing the book in the format (electronic or paper) of your choice from the list above.


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