Home » E-Learning » Chapter 5 Choosing e-tools for blended learning.

Chapter 5 Choosing e-tools for blended learning.

The success or otherwise of a learning activity depends on the choice of learning tools or resources used to support that task as much as it much as it does on the use of the tools and resources. Littlejohn (2004)

These lessons will only be successful if the discussion is perceived by students relevant and timely, if the forum is structured and managed, and if the learners are given adequate support. (Conole et al,. 2004).

The matrix is based on five broad learning activity techniques based on Laurillard’s Conversational Model (2001).

Assimilative: process narrative information (reading books, e–books, attending talks, lectures and classroom teaching, watching a video or TV, including YouTube listening to the radio or a podcast). Then manage this information by taking notes (which may be blogged or managed in an e–portfolio or any old-fashioned exercise book or arch–level file).

Adaptive: Where the learning environment changes based in the learner’s actions, such as online simulations or computer games.
Communicative: discussion, ice–breaker, debate face–to–face or online (and therefore synchronous and asynchronous)

Productive: creating something, from an essay to a blog, a written paper in an exam and sundry diagrams, drawings, video, sculptures. Whatever is produced as a outcome from the learning activity. (Increasingly created online to share on a platform: blog, audio podcast, animation, photo gallery, video and any combination or ‘mash–up’ of these).

Experiential: interactive problem solving from a field trip to a role–play. Creative Problem Solving techniques might include Heroes, Human Sculpture, Time Line).

Dialog Plus Table
What How Tools and resources

Source. G.Conole. ‘Describing learning activities and tools and resources to guide practice’.

In H Beetham and R Sharpe (eds) Rethinking pedagogy for a digital age: Designing and delivering e–Learning (2007)

Gap between theories, tools and readily available learning tools to ‘afford particular learning advantages’.

Exciting emergent technologies: contextual, ambient, adaptive, augmented, distributed, social. 30% C6.

Towards social learning with blogs, wikis, podcasts (Conole and Oliver, 2007. Weller, 2007)

Three fundamental shifts from:

  • Information to communicaiton
  • Passive to active
  • Indivual learning to situative learning (in the pressence of others, face–to–face and virtual, synchronous and asynchronous: Skype, blog, Online game).

Littlejohn (forthcoming)
Digital assets: a single item, image, video or podcast.
Information objects: a structured aggregation of digital assets designed purely to present information.
Learning activities: tasks involving interactions with information to attain a specific learning outcome.
Learning design: structured sequences of information and learning activities to promote learning.

conceptualization: source information.
construction: repurpose and use in learner’s context.
integration: develop and use to inform others.

  • narrative
  • communicative
  • productive


Conole, G (2004)
Laurillard, D (2001)
Littlejohn, (2004)
Littlejohn, Falconer, McGill (2010) Characterizing effective eLearning resources. Computers in Education.

1 Comment

  1. I regard forum facilitation as a key variable for success

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: