Back to School Reading List

Summer’s winding down here in the northern hemisphere and the kids are getting ready to go back to school.  Although it’s been a while since most of us were in school, we still get the urge every autumn to buy new pencil cases, new clothes, new shoes and lunchboxes.  And then we’re ready to sink ourselves into some good old fashioned learning.  Our favourite subject?  Why elearning of course!

Take a look at some of the old classics we’ll be cracking open again this autumn, as well as some new books we’re planning on stuffing into our book bags and backpacks.  Whether you’re new to elearning or doing a refresher course, why not read a few of these yourself?

eLearning and the Science of Instruction by Ruth Colvin Clark and Richard E. Mayer

We love this book. We’re practical people and this book helps you put theory to work.  
Lots of examples illustrate some key principles:  multimedia, contiguity, modality, redundancy, coherence, and personalisation.  Sound theoretical?  Don’t be scared.  Clark and Mayer present these concepts in terms you can understand and put to immediate use.  If you haven’t read it yet, why not?

Michael Allen’s Guide to eLearning by Michael Allen

Another elearning classic.  Michael Allen presents example after example of ways to put a new twist on your old, static elearning.

We love the chapters on motivating your learners.  So get motivated and get this book!

Gadgets, Games, and Gizmos for Learning:  Tools and Techniques for Transferring Know-How from Boomers to Gamers by Karl Kapp

Karl Kapp presents some fabulous ideas for spicing up your courses with learning games – from the simple designs to the more complex.

Be sure to check out Chapter 2 if you're about to start a new project and need some juice before you start brainstorming. Lots of practical ideas and examples for turning basic teaching points into learning games -- from casual games to teach facts and concepts, to detailed simulations that teach procedures and problem solving.

Read Cammy Bean’s more detailed review of this book at her blog.

Visual Learning by Connie Malamed

We haven’t all read this one yet, but understand it’s a must read for those interested in creating better graphics in their e-learning courses.  It’s going in the back pack.

Our friend Clive Shepherd recently reviewed this book on his blog. And check out our top tip number 27 for more on visual learning.

e-Learning by Design by William Horton 

This is now an elearning classic.  Definitely worth a look.


Moodle 1.9 Multimedia  by João Pedro Soares Fernandes

This new book is aimed at helping educators, trainers and teachers create instructional materials and design students' multimedia activities in Moodle.   It’s organised around a case study – creating a course on music appreciation.  We’re excited to add this one to the autumn reading list. 


Amazon Tip

This might be obvious to everyone else, but we’ve recently started making use of the used book feature on Amazon.  A great way to get top notch elearning books, gently used, at great prices!

Book Reviews

Interested in what else we’ve been reading?  Check out our Book Reviews.  

Which reminds me, we now have a lot of book reports due, don’t we?  Ahh, back to school.



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