Reflecting on 2011

As 2011 comes to an end I thought it would be nice to reflect back on the year. This has certainly been a year of change for me, both personally and professionally. I have been involved in lots of fantastic projects; particularly on learning design and Open Educational Resources. The two main achievements for me this year were the submission of my book, ‘Designing for learning in an open world’, to Springer and starting my new job as professor of learning innovation at Leicester University.


The Design-Practice project with Cyprus and Greece came to an end in October. It was a great project, transferring the learning design methodology we developed at the OU to teachers in Cyprus and Greece. I am also continuing to be involved in the JISC OULDI project, which has been a great success and very much the foundation for much of my thinking on learning design. I have also been involved in the STELLAR network, LD Grid, and have had some excellent conversations with others passionate about learning design. Closely linked to this was a recent trip to Sydney as part of James Dalziel’s fellowship. For both networks we have lots of good ideas of how to take the area forward. With Tapio Koskinen, from Aalto University, I co-edited a special issue of e-learning papers on learning design; there are some great contributions in the issue.

In terms of OER I was involved in the Olnet initiative at the OU and contributions here include a recently published special issue of EURODL on creativity and OER, as part of Elsebeth Soreson’s Olnet fellowship. I have also been lucky enough to travel the world, literally – including Bali, Sydney and many European countries.

2011 was also the year in which social and participatory media became even more important for me, in both a professional and personal capacity. I continue to be an avid fan of Twitter, but this year has seen my use of Facebook increase dramatically. I am also connected in LinkedIn and Google+ but these tools haven’t, as of yet, really made an impact on my daily practice.

I am looking forward to working with colleagues at Leicester in the New Year and to continuing to build on the existing research work and international collaborations. Where will things be this time next year? I don’t know, but no doubt 2012 will be as busy and interesting as 2011.

Happy New Year and thanks for taking the time to read my blog and to post comments!