Week 5 – Getting The Party Started!

I started to look around for a professional association to examine for the week five assignment.  I am very interested in the area of  Instructional Design – so I found the Association for Instructional Design site:

http://www.industrial-design-schools.org/instructional-design-blogs

It seemed a little intense – but, I found the link where they recommend a list of their favorite blogs.  They include what the blogger’s main interest is and why they like the site.  I cruised through the list of 50 or more and pulled out five of them that I found most interesting.  They are listed below.  I went to each blog and lurked around reading and checking out links on the pages.  If I got a good feeling about the conversations – I kept them on the list.  In cases where the link was dead – or the person’s direction did not feel like a good match for my interests – I deleted them from my list and went back to pick out another one form the Association’s recommendations.  I ended up with the five here and subscribed to receive each of their blogs via email.

Meanwhile – I had wandered onto a blog that was not listed on this Association’s favorite blog list – but, I was so fascinated by the topics that were covered – that I found myself spending hours reading through all the stuff the author, “Tom Kulhmann” had put forward about being an Instructional Designer.  He had a seemingly endless array of tricks and tips, and links to instructions and videos on how he had done things.  Some of the posts went back quite a few years – so there was a lot to choose from.

After awhile I started reading what his followers were talking about – and I began to feel excitement about the conversations they were having with each other.  It reminds me of the class discussions we have in the forums of our classes at UD.  It made me think about how I felt when after watching the video of Mat’s chat with Laura Gibbs – I had sent a Thank you comment to her – and was stunned when she answered me!  It occurred to me that we could actually have a conversation at some point.

I guess when I started this week’s assignment – I was finding the links and the conversations – but, it was like being at a party where you don’t really know anyone and they aren’t talking about stuff you feel you can contribute to.  But, when I stumbled upon “Tom Kuhlmann’s” blog:

http://www.articulate.com/rapid-elearning/about-tom/

I felt engaged with the topics.  I became more and more eager to read the next post.  I found myself interested in what the conversation was and look forward to joining in.  I guess this is what social networking is all about!  It’s got to be a party that you want to be at to be truly rewarding.

Sorry it took all these words to get to this point – I guess sometimes it’s that kind of a journey.  I look forward to reading the other sites’ blogs as they come in – and hope that some of them prove to be as interesting as the one I am following.

#1  http://elearningtech.blogspot.com/

What the Association said about it:

“eLearning Technology: eLearning Technology is written by Tony Karrer, an expert on the subject of eLearning and how technology can affect education. The blog contains information on topics such as low-cost quiz tools and how to hold effective web conferences.    Why We Love It: The blog’s posts are detailed, and the information in them is highly useful. The blog is also updated frequently.

    Favorite Post: Low-Cost Test and Quiz Tool Comparison: eLearning Technology”

#2  http://usablelearning.wordpress.com/

What the Association said about it:

“The Usable Learning Blog: The Usable Learning Blog is a great resource for instructional designers. It has a very clean and readable format, and it includes posts ranging from how learning games relate to movies and sports to how there is a pay gap in e-learning.     Why We Love It: The blog is fun to read—besides being extremely instructive, the posts are written well and formatted nicely, and are often accompanied by great pictures and illustrations.     Favorite Post: Fraught Decisions”

#3  http://blog.thewritersgateway.com/

What the Association said about it:

“The Writers Gateway: This informative blog packs a wealth of information into its posts, covering everything from how to use software tutorials effectively to how augmented reality games are the future of learning. It is a great resource for instructional designers.     Why We Love It: The blog doesn’t have a fancy format, but it utilizes its simplicity to great effect and has a great variety of useful advice and information.     Favorite Post:Introduction to the Instructor Led Training Toolkit”

#4  http://angelaathomas.com/

What the Association said about it:

“Angela A Thomas: This blog, written by a lecturer in English & arts education, includes fascinating posts on how virtual worlds affect learning and literature. It is a great read for anybody interested in instructional design.”

#5  http://blog.avantgame.com/

What the Association said about it:

“Avant Game: This blog, written by a game designer and researcher, looks at how gaming and game technologies are shaping education, learning, and society in general.”

This adventure took me to : Gameful

http://gameful.org

It looks like a lot of fun – but, it does not look like my niche.  I do like the focus – on games for good.

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