busuu.com is inconceivably big. It is in fact the largest social network for language learning in the world with over 30,000,000 users from 200 countries. That’s more than the population of Uzbekistan. It’s more than the populations of the Czech Republic, Sweden and Austria combined. It’s more than 800 times the size of Liechtenstein, the homeland … Read more
During TechCrunch’s Disrupt conference in San Francisco on Monday Udacity‘s CEO, Sebastian Thrun, announced the launch of the Open Education Alliance (OEA). The alliance represents the efforts of Google, AT&T and a range of educational organizations (Khan Academy, cloudera, etc.) who are combining forces with a view of developing and providing learning tools to help … Read more
The folks over at Polish startup LangApp have come up with something rather special; a heady mix of vocabulary tutor, social network and shareable media library. It’s a potent brew. Vocabla is a powerful demonstration of how addictive language learning can be whilst also being both effective and entirely free. Its premise is a simple … Read more
More interesting news from adaptive learning technology provider Knewton today, as they announced their latest publisher partnership, this time with Cambridge University Press, and the opening of a new office in London. The partnership will see the Knewton API integrated with the Cambridge LMS platform, which currently serves over 250,000 students and teachers globally. The move … Read more
It’s a common occurrence; as the projects and deadlines start to stack up it gets increasingly difficult to get to the bottom of your inbox let alone move ahead with organising the work that actually needs to be done. Keeping on top of the correspondence and coordinating a team has a knack of becoming an … Read more
We at eltjam are always looking for a more innovative, intuitive way of doing things. One such ‘life hack’ that works incredibly well for managing or collaborating on ELT projects is good ol’ twitter. It can be used as a very slick (and free) platform for communicating and coordinating with your project team. As any … Read more
Back in June, Laurie wrote a piece on crowdfunding in ELT, which lamented the fact that nothing much ELT-related was happening on crowdfunding sites such as Kickstarter. Well, there’s one recently launched project that’s definitely worth a look. Atama-ii Books is the brainchild of, amongst others, Marcos Benevides, a Japan-based teacher, publisher and author. Marcos is well … Read more
I don’t know what it is but we at eltjam are feeling a little nostalgic. It might be that we’ve met our 500th follower on twitter this week. It might be the spate of glorious weather that the UK is revelling in. Who knows? Either way, it’s at times like this that it makes sense … Read more
Is the linear ELT course on the way out? There’s a growing trend towards the provision of modular mix and match content, or even completely ‘atomised’ content. There are four key things driving this trend: The need to make content development faster and more efficient The potential for huge improvements in production efficiency The rise … Read more
The way learning activity is recorded by LMSs is about to undergo a long over-due shake up. If you use an LMS as either a student, a teacher, an administrator, or even as an LMS provider, you no doubt already have some misgivings about the way in which learning activity is tracked by the system: your LMS is probably too rigid to track all the results at the level of granularity you want; it is likely to be a painful process to conform your learning content to work with the way outcomes are tracked; and almost definitely your LMS is unable to track informal or non-curricular learning activity at all. You are not alone in your dissatisfaction. Fortunately, inroads are being made into redefining the way in learning experiences can be tracked and recorded.
A recent scary-sounding post on FutureBook (Will you be in the nine percent of publishers that survive?) about recent research into disruptive innovation got me thinking about what it might mean for ELT publishing. A few weeks ago I posted a primer on disruptive innovation in which I made the case for EdTech as a disruptive force in ELT. I thought it might be interesting now to delve into this a bit more and explore what it is that a disruptive ELT publisher might do, and how to avoid being among the ranks of the disrupted.
The typical creation, development, production and publication of an ELT title is an often gruelling process. The sheer amount of meetings, emails, phone calls, emails, meetings and Word docs is overwhelming to the point of maddening. But … that’s the way books are born, right? The key project team (publishers, editorial, production) correspond with each … Read more
Learning management systems were supposed to have died out by now, weren’t they? Swept away by a wave of 21st century platforms, mobile apps and MOOCs. In fact, in ELT, it feels like they’re only just getting going. Let’s have a look at the LMS market in general and see what the main ELT publishers … Read more
In Part 1 of this post, we had a quick look at the current state of the ELT self-publishing market. If that didn’t scare you off — and I hope it didn’t — here are five tips to help make sure your own self-publishing venture is a success.
ebooks are fast becoming something that ELT publishers simply have to be able to deliver in a world that’s lurching towards the paperless classroom. However, moving from print to ebooks is much easier said than done, especially if you’re adapting an existing (and possibly old) print book, and there a number of hurdles which might not be immediately obvious. Here’s my starter for 10. Each of these is a whole topic in itself, and I’ve raised more questions than answers, so let’s consider this just a starting point!
It’s appears truer then ever that a rolling stone gathers no moss as Rosetta Stone follows its recent acquisition of Livemocha by taking on the services and systems of Lexia Learning. The $22.5 million deal represents Rosetta Stone’s leading edge strategy of moving towards being an education solutions provider in U.S. schools as opposed to exclusively … Read more
My recent post on whether ELT brands had become more important than ELT authors generated lots of interesting discussion in the comments, and a few things in particular jumped out: Jason R Levine: … in the age of education 2.0-3.0, have the ELT teachers, content creators, and curators become more important? Eric Roth: Given the … Read more