My ten (work-related) highlights of 2022


Maren has done a Ten Milestones of 22 post, so I thought I’d tag along and think back on my highlights on what was not always an easy year. So in no particular order:

Publishing Metaphors of Ed Tech – I think that of the books I’ve written, this is the most ‘me’. It was great to get it out this year, through Athabasca University Press. It’s obviously brilliantly written and insightful (ahem), but what I like most about it is that I think it’s also playful and kind of fun. Not many books on ed tech meet those criteria.

A new Masters in Online Education from IET – although I didn’t do that much on this, it’s been a long, sometimes screaming into the void sort of journey to get a new Masters launched. So it definitely feels like an achievement for all of us in IET to have it real.

Resourcing the Open Qualifications – I’m the director of the open programme at the OU. This is probably a bit internally focused to mean much, but we had a 6 yearly quality review last year. One of the recommendations was to put in place proper resourcing and support for the programme. Many of you will be aware of how much it takes to negotiate such approvals through university systems, so that we end the year with this now set up is big tick in the To Do list.

GO-GN activity – we kept up a good year of activity with GO-GN including co-chairing OER22, publishing numerous reports and running webinars. Next year marks the 10th anniversary of this penguin themed OER community.

Blogging – I only published 31 blog posts this year, so it definitely took a dip, but I’ve enjoyed what I’ve written (it’s quality not quantity, right?). The Good Online Learning series was a useful means to think through some post pandemic criticism of online ed.

The (slight) return of travel and face to face – I only went to two conferences this year (OER22 and I-HE2022). That feels like enough, I have no desire to go back to continual travel, but it was a delight to see people again and engage in some of that face to face stuff.

Establishing home office – in contrast to the above, I also really enjoyed getting my home set up organised. Working from home has now become the default for much of the OU and I no longer feel like the inconvenience joining a meeting remotely, or enjoy the delights of sitting on the M4 for hours at a time.

Podcasts and fun stuff – around the book in particular I got to do some fun promotion, including guesting on a few podcasts and doing a DS106 radio show. This reminded me of the playful stuff we used to do when this blogging lark was all new.

Keynotes and talks – I gave 5 or 6 invited talks this year (all online), and it’s always pleasing to be active outside of your institution. I organised a webinar in conjunction with the Ukrainian Ministry of Education and the OU, where we presented different perspectives on delivering distance learning. Over 800 educators in the Ukraine attended, much to everyone’s surprise and delight.

Getting over a wobble – I had a bit of a crisis this year, which meant I was off work for the first time in years. It was touching to get lots of individual messages from people checking in with me, and the support of colleagues meant I have come back even more annoying than ever.

Of course, I could do a 10 (or more) completely crap things relating to work this year too, but let’s go out of 2022 on a positive note. I hope you can find ten things that brought you pleasure and satisfaction at work this year.

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