More conference catch-ups: Reflections on the OER23 conference

Catriona Matthews and Paul Astles ~ Learning Designers

We had the honour and privilege of discussing this very blog site at the ALT Open Education Conference (#OER23) this year. OER, if you haven’t come across the term before, refers to Open Educational Resources.

Our talk, held on the second day of the conference and titled “Read all about it!! The benefits and challenges of creating a high-quality open access blog”, can be viewed here on YouTube. The last slide of the talk is represented in an image below. We would love for you to follow the QR code at the bottom of that slide and tell us how a particular blog post on our site may have inspired you to reflect on and develop your practice.

Image with QR codes to scan to share with us how a particular blog post on our site may have inspired you to reflect on and develop your practice.

During the conference we were on Twitter, live-tweeting our thoughts and reflections. Some of these were being re-tweeted by the team account. If you haven’t had a chance yet, please follow the OU Learning Design team Twitter account. You will get a good flavour of our experiences and takeaways on there.

Continue reading “More conference catch-ups: Reflections on the OER23 conference”

Remixplay 5: Conference-in-a-pod

In January, I had the privilege of attending the GameChangers Remixplay 5: Secret agents of change conference in Coventry, a space for those who use playful practice to engage and build communities, and to then set that community loose on projects of monumental societal change.

I had a blast at the conference, and came away with new ideas around the place of community in change efforts and projects, some fabulously creative approaches to making STEM engaging, and about over five hours of recorded audio. As with my post on the Playful Learning conference last year, I’ve pulled my experience of the day in the form of audio snippets together with my subsequent reflections to form a conference-in-a-pod, a flavour of the day, my lessons learned – and some bonus discussions with the conference organisers. You can listen using the player below, or via the Pedagodzilla Podcast website.

There’s a few links mentioned in the interviews with Alex Masters and Sylvester Arnab at the end. I’d encourage you to go check out the ACES and GameChangers stuff, it’s unsurprisingly ace.

Help! A robot wrote my essay!: Reflections on webinars about ChatGPT

Eleanor Moore ~ Learning Designer


With experts across the world sounding alarm bells about the impact of AI (disappearing jobs and widening wealth inequality to name just two issues), how worried should we be about its potential in education?

When ChatGPT burst on the scene in November 2022 with its human-sounding prose and extensive knowledge base, the worried frown in academia suddenly got a lot deeper. With the last bastion of academic excellence – the essay – under threat, learning technologists and academics across the globe are asking: what are we going to do? It will therefore come as no surprise that the recent University of Kent webinars on ChatGPT exceeded the maximum user limit in Teams with 1337 attendees.

Continue reading “Help! A robot wrote my essay!: Reflections on webinars about ChatGPT”

From email alert to delivering a talk: Unexpected scholarship

Paul Astles and Catriona Matthews ~ Learning Designers


Scholarship can happen in unexpected ways and an opportunity can present itself when you least expect it. In this instance, a colleague from the Open University Library shared a call for content at a webinar series curated by the University of Kent. The theme of the event was around the role of the ‘learning designer’ in supporting student retention and success. We felt that this provided an excellent opportunity for us to share the role of the Learning Designer at the Open University and to specifically discuss how we support module teams in relation to student retention and success. Continue reading “From email alert to delivering a talk: Unexpected scholarship”

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