Ian Watson will be joining the eLearning Alliance at our Learning Essentials Conference on 31st October which we're holding at West Lothian College.  During his session, Ian will look at the increasing role social media is playing in learning, and how it is being used to share knowledge and build networks.

Ian is Knowledge Media Programme Manager with the  Institute for Research and Innovation in Social Services, and has a background in the legal and technical aspects of sharing knowledge and information.  Ians current interests include the use of social media to support and enhance learning, and it's this topic which he will explore with us at Learning Essentials.

Continuous learning is less about courses and more about people sharing knowledge, experience, ideas and resources as part of the daily workflow.  Ian will discuss this aspect of learning, and how social media can play an important role in enabling us to find, share and build on existing knowledge.

Ians session will look at the emerging role of personal learning networks and environments, drawing on the work of Jane Hart, Jay Cross and Harold Jarche, and look at how we can build networks using, for example, Twitter or LinkedIn which allow us to tap into the experience of seasoned experts who are more than willing to share.  These networks will not replace formal courses but they can make them more effective.

Learning Essentials 2014 takes place at West Lothian College on 31st October.  The cost for Alliance Members to attend the days event is only £99.


Martin Gower will be joining the eLearning Alliance at our Learning Essentials conference on 31st October which we're holding at West Lothian College.  During his session, Martin will tell us more about the successful use of eLearning during the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games.

Having started his eLearning career as an Authorware programmer in 1997, Martin progressed to an Instructional Designer, Learning Consultant and Project Manager.  During this time, Martin has worked in Learning Technology as a supplier and a customer, within organisations such as Department of Health, VEGA Group, Cable&Wireless, Howden, Atos & eCom Scotland, and now with DirectLine.

But when you speak to Martin, he will tell you that managing the eLearning project for Glasgow 2014 is one of the highlights of his career, and it's some of the experiences from this project which Martin will share with us at Learning Essentials.

When Glasgow 2014 commissioned the ‘Games Exchange’ it had 2 main objectives in eLearning :
1. To deliver volunteer and contractor eLearning and Health & Safety eLearning
2. To relay information in a systematic, structured format to a diverse target audience

During Martins session, you will learn how the Glasgow 2014 eLearning solution was successfully implemented, gaining an understanding of how a Games based Organised Committee works and fits in with other organisations.  In addition, you will learn how the project included not only rolling out a Learning Management System (LMS), but also how the challenge of adding 15,000 volunteers, 1,000 paid staff and up to 30,000 contractors onto the eLearning platform was achieved via self-registration – all within tight resources and a defined budget.

Learning Essentials 2014 takes place at West Lothian College on 31st October.  The cost for Alliance Members to attend the days event is only £99.


eLearning provider Learning Nexus and its partner, awarding body AIM Awards, have launched two qualifications that are delivered and assessed entirely online.

The qualifications are the Level 2 Award in Food Safety in Catering (QCF), which meets EU Food Safety legislative requirements, and the Level 2 Award in Health and Safety in the Workplace (QCF), which covers fundamental health and safety principles and legislation for the modern workplace.

These two qualifications include cost effective, high quality learning materials, and are delivered online to provide maximum learning flexibility. A person can complete a series of interactive learning sessions that are mapped to each qualification and that are followed by an online, multi-choice assessment.

Learning Nexus and AIM Awards have been working together to develop a range of qualifications and to allocate Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Points to Learning Nexus eLearning Courses.

Martin, from Voluntary Action Leicestershire (VAL), is one of the first people to access the new online qualifications. He said: “As a recognised AIM Awards approved centre, we have previously used AIM Awards products for training. These new qualifications delivered via online learning offer our organisation the fantastic benefit of flexibility; and also saves time, without compromising the quality factor. We are pleased to be one of the first organisations to be offering these new qualifications to voluntary organisations in Leicester and Leicestershire”.

The Learning Nexus Managing Director, Peter Howell, said; “We are pleased to announce the launch of the first two qualifications from the exciting partnership with AIM Awards. We have many more qualifications and other exciting, related developments planned. Watch this space!”

The two new qualifications are available to directly purchase through AIM Awards. If you would like to find out more, please telephone 01332 861999 or email, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Simon Williams will be joining the eLearning Alliance at our Learning Essentials event on 31st October which we're holding at West Lothian College.  Simon will use his time with us to describe how we can make a business case for investing in eLearning.

We all know that the first activities which organisations tend to reduce when money is tight are training and development.  Now, more than ever, learning providers need to show the services they provide add value and a positive impact to our organisations – that there is a return for the investment made.

As a long time Member (and past Chairman) of the eLearning Alliance, many of you will know Simon well, and during his session at Learning Essentials, he will share with us some of his experiences and knowledge of Return on Investment, specifically within the training environment and how to show the impact, and the return on investment, to decision makers.

This session is an opportunity for suppliers and users of eLearning to discuss what impact organisations are looking for from eLearning services and products – and how to show the impact (the return on investment) to the decision makers and the holders of the purse strings.   

Learning Essentials 2014 takes place at West Lothian College on 31st October.  The cost for Alliance Members to attend the days event is only £99.


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The eLearning Alliance is pleased to announce that John Connell will be giving a keynote speech at this years Learning Essentials event on 31st October.

In John Connell, we have an educationist with wide experience across all education sectors, and founder of the ‘I Am Learner’ international education consultancy. He counts UNESCO, European Schoolnet, Promethean, the Maitri Trust, Skills Development Scotland and Pearson amongst his recent clients.

Many of you may know John from when he led the design, procurement and initial implementation of the Scottish Schools Digital Network project, now known as Glow.  Following this project, John was an education business strategist for Cisco, working across Emerging Markets, including Africa, Latin America, Middle East, Eastern Europe and Russia.  He's advised governments, universities, NGOs and other bodies on the potential of networked learning in education.

At Learning Essentials, John will speak about the conjunction of education and technology, sharing his views on how new technologies are impacting our learning environment, and how the reality of the learning revolution is that it is happening slowly, piecemeal, sometimes imperceptibly, around us, but its ultimate repercussions are likely to be deeper, broader and more thoroughgoing than even many of the enthusiasts are anticipating.

John will share how the critical factor in this slow but deep revolution is the fact that technology is changing education from the inside out. While the tools and platforms and systems being externally imposed on schools, colleges, universities and workplaces all play their parts in the 'revolution', the most profound effects are really arising out of the changes that digital and networking technologies have wrought in the way that people can now learn, in the re-shaping of traditional relationships between teacher and learner, and in the shifting of the locus of control over learning from the institution and the teacher to the learner.

John will use his experience of education across the world to provoke some thinking on the nature of this gradual and global revolution in learning.

Learning Essentials 2014 takes place at West Lothian College on 31st October.  The cost for Alliance Members to attend the days event is only £99.


Alliance Member, eCom Scotland, have announced plans to double it's staff numbers to 40, with an expectation that this will raise turnover to £1.6 million, up from £800,000 in the 2013 financial year.

The move is supported by a £100,000 loan from Royal Bank of Scotland through the government-backed Enterprise Finance Guarantee scheme.

Managing director Wendy Edie said new staff usually spend three months in training before taking on client-facing work, creating a lag between the costs of hiring these people and the revenues they generate. The loan will allow eCom to bridge that gap.

She added that the additional working capital would not only allow eCom to hire new people, but also “put them through the specialised training process which is essential with a business like ours”.

Steven Hunter, relationship manager at RBS, said: “ECom is a growth focused business. When you combine this with their strong reputation in the market, excellent client base and the ongoing rise in the use of e-learning across the corporate community you have a business with real scope for development and further success.”

Full story at The Scotsman.