ALT Community Call: Rod Paley on blended learning resources – collecting from anywhere, sharing with anyone
For a couple of months we’ve been having a monthly Google Hangout On Air with members of the ALT community. These calls are an opportunity to hear about the areas of interest from members. In our latest call we spoke to Rod Paley Managing Director of Xtensis Ltd. Xtensis are the company behind XtLearn.net, an online platform for gathering and organising educational resources into visually engaging collections which can be shared easily on different platforms. We spoke to Rod about his expertise in learning resource management and recent involvement in the newly established Blended Learning Consortium, which now has buy-in from over 65 colleges and college groups* and whose resources are available on XtLearn. This BLC-branded site enables subscribing consortium members to browse for resources via subject classification trees and to deploy them either standalone or via collections which can combine BLC resources with those from the wider web and tutors’ own resources. This approach liberates the BLC resources to be useful in innovative ways, and the resulting collections – available in a modern, customisable visual style – can be published to different sites and/or embedded anywhere including VLEs such as Moodle. Here’s an example of a collection containing materials from multiple sources plus a couple of the new BLC resources.
As part of the call Rod spoke about his experience working with other content projects including the National Learning Network (NLN) which Xtensis operate on behalf of the Education and Training Foundation and various others such as Intute rescued from closure by providing hosting and free access to the sector. Rod highlighted the importance of building communities of practice to not only make but also share resources. In the case of XtLearn there is lots of clever technology that can detect useful information about shared resources which as far as possible is hidden from the end user.
In the call we also touched upon open education practices. As a platform XtLearn remains agnostic allowing the use and remix with any license. Rod is interested in the continual evolution of open education and projects focused on aggregating content and is keen to support the open education movement as it evolves. As an exhibitor at OER15 Rod was impressed with initiatives like DigLit Leicester OER Schools project and looks forward to OER17.
The recording from the ALT Community Call with Rod Paley is embedded below which is followed by some notes about things mentioned in the call:
*The Association for Learning Technology (ALT) is currently offering Blended Learning Consortium members a 20% discount on Organisations Membership and a 20% reduction in registration fees for CMALT. More information about this offer is available in this leaflet.
Managing Director, Xtensis Ltd.
Chief Innovation Community and Technology Officer, Association for Learning Technology
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