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7 Reasons and 7 Ideas About 7 Things
January 20, 2010 - 8:11pm

The EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative's (ELI's) 7 Things You Should Know About series is one of my favorite monthly publications.

Recent 7 Things publications included briefs about Next-Generation Presentation Tools, Google Wave, collaborative annotation, telepresence, data visualization, and microblogging.

The 7 Things on lecture capture proved enormously useful at my institution as a tool to make sure everyone involved in the project started with a similar understanding of the service and were all using a common language.

7 reasons why I love 7 things:

1. Timeliness: The topics are always just at that leading edge, where there is an awareness of the issue or technology but not a good shared understanding.

2. Style: The 7 Things publications are always written in a clear, concise and "jargon free" style.

3. Learning Focussed: The 7 Things topics always have a direct learning focus and application.

4. Frequency: The monthly format of the 7 Things insures that a critical mass of topics are covered without being overloaded.

5. Future Oriented: Each 7 Things provides a roadmap to understand how the topic covered is likely to impact the future of teaching and learning.

6. Faculty Friendly: The 7 Things work great as pieces that we can share with faculty colleagues, providing a 3rd party credible source to initiate discussions and engage in faculty development.

7. Balanced: Each 7 Things strikes a nice balance between the innovative and the practical. The publications can provide an excellent opportunity to engage in dialogue with senior administration around priorities, resources and investments.

Here is my list of 7 topics I'd like to learn more about and discuss with my colleagues:

7 ideas for 7 things:

7 Things to Know About EDUCAUSE

7 Foremothers and Forefathers of Learning Technology

7 of the Most Important Innovations in Learning Technology

7 of Elements of Constructivist Learning Theory

7 Common Tasks of a Learning Technologist (to be given to one's mother-in-law to explain son-in-law's job).

7 Essential Steps in Building a Career in Learning Technology

7 Learning Technologies That Did Not Live Up Their Hype

Reading over my suggested 7 Things list I realize that I might be stretching the format beyond what it is designed to accomplish. My list perhaps pushes more into the realm of opinion and commentary, where the 7 Things series is about information and application.

What 7 Things publications would you like to see?


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