Top Learning Tools 2018

Jane Hart’s annual list of the Top 200 Tools for Learning was released in late September. You can find the list with brief descriptions of all of the current year top tools for learning.

I’m going to talk about some great tools in this article, but I would encourage you to look to the bottom of the page for our more recent analysis of the top tools for learning.

I get excited to review this list each year for two reasons: 1) I’m curious how the tools I use rank in popularity across the L&D community (the list was compiled after 2,951 votes were cast from 52 different countries), and 2) I love scanning the list to see if there might be some digital tools I could add to my craft in the coming year.

This year, one thing that jumped out at me was the number of “Audience Response Tools” that are available.  Continue reading

Poll Everywhere Leaderboard Review

This week, Poll Everywhere released a new poll option with leaderboard functionality.  If you are unfamiliar with Poll Everywhere, check out this post. This week I reviewed this tool, and I am excited to share what I found.

Before I get to that, I should say that leaderboards are one of those gamification terms that I have to intentionally not roll my eyes when I hear. Continue reading

Cool Tools

I am a geek at heart. I love finding new software to play with and find a way to incorporate into training or training development. Let’s look at a few tools I discovered recently that you can use in your upcoming training.

Post-it Plus

Like many trainers, I have a pretty big affinity for sticky notes. After training, I often take photos of my participants’ sticky note creations and then send out the JPG in an email for reference. As an image, this is a static reference without an easy ability to update. Well, it used to be a static resource. With the Post-it Plus app, you and your participants can keep the conversation going outside of the classroom by updating your sticky note creation. Check out this video below.


The self-proclaimed Google, but for colors, Picular has been buzzing around my Twitter feed all week. has a simple interface with a familiar looking search bar and no menus or About Us section. Picular uses your search terms to crawl Google Images for the top results and returns a color palate base on the top results. It isn’t perfect, but it is a fun way to draw inspiration.

I look forward to playing with these new tools and seeing where they take my next training. What new tools are you using? Let’s talk about it in the comments below!

Tool Review: Screencast-O-Matic

When I have down time, I like to play around with some different tools to see if there’s anything I should be adding to my own catalog of technologies I can incorporate into my work flow.

Jane Hart’s list of Top 200 Tools for Learning is my go-to place for inspiration.

This past week I spent a lot of time talking with colleagues and potential clients about software training, specifically the importance of short, on-demand tutorials to help casual system users remember how to perform certain functions. With this in mind, I started to browse the Top 200 Tools list and came across Screencast-O-Matic. I took it for a spin and this is what I learned:   Continue reading

Heather’s Top 10 Tools for Workplace Learning

Earlier this week, Brian outlined his top ten tools for 2018 to vote in Jane Hart’s top 200 of 2018. I’d also like to take a chance to share my list. While there is frequent overlap in our job roles at Endurance Learning, my tasks can be a bit different with my focus on instructional design of Instructor-led and eLearning course. I use several tools to work remotely as an instructional designer. Here are the top ten I am using this year. Continue reading

Brian’s Top 10 Tools for Workplace Learning

Each year, Jane Hart at the Centre for Learning & Performance Technologies (C4LPT) compiles a list of the top 200 digital tools used for learning. She compiles this list by asking for people from across the world to submit the top 10 digital tools for learning that they use on a regular basis.

Below, you’ll find the 10 digital tools I’ve found most useful over the past year (in no particular order) as well as a link for more information if you’d like to submit your own list to C4LPT.   Continue reading

Looking for new training tools for your next project?

Each year Jane Hart’s Centre for Learning & Performance Technologies (C4LPT) publishes a list of the Top 200 Tools for Learning.

And each year, things like Google Search, PowerPoint and YouTube appear at the top of the list. Those aren’t surprising, but I love scrolling down the list in order to see what new training tools other people are using. I’ll inevitably stumble upon a few new technologies that I’ll incorporate into my own toolbox.

From past lists I’ve discovered new training tools like Kahoot! and PowToon, both of which I’ll still use to this day.

This year, I came across two new training technologies that seem like they could be really useful (or at least really fun) to begin playing with.  One focuses on interactive video, the other on augmented reality. Continue reading

Twitter as a Learning Tool

I’m still not sold on Twitter.  There’s been lots of buzz about Twitter as a learning tool for years, but I didn’t bite.  Sure, I signed up for an account and I’ll tweet from time to time and I follow some folks – Buffalo Bills running back CJ Spiller (go Bills!), some conference speakers I was impressed with, some of my favorite bloggers who focus on training and development – but it’s never been a key piece to my own professional development strategy, let alone a tool I’ve ever used in my own training design.

This week, as I was in the midst of leading a training event, the following tweet caught my eye:


It was timely since I was desperately seeking some inspiration on what I should say in order to wrap up the 2.5 day series of workshops.  Perhaps it’s time to give Twitter a second look when it comes to a tool for my own professional development as well as a tool that can be used in my training efforts.

I still wonder: with sooooooooo many tweets cluttering up my Twitter feed, how can I cut through all the noise and find more 140-character pieces of wisdom like the timely tweet I found last week?  And perhaps more importantly, how can I cut through all the noise and reach my learners beyond the training room via Twitter?

Have you found Twitter useful?  How so?

The Train Like A Champion Blog is published Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.  If you think someone else might find this interesting, please pass it along.  If you don’t want to miss a single, brilliant post, be sure to click “Follow”!  And yes, you can find sporadic, 140-character messages from me on Twitter @flipchartguy.

“I always run out of time”

You put together an amazing design and your audience is completely engaged.  They’ve been participating throughout the session.  They’re loving it.  You’re loving it.  There’s only one problem.

You still have about 30 minutes of material left to present.  And you only have 5 more minutes remaining in your session.

Getting through your complete lesson requires time management on two fronts:

  1. Time management for the facilitator(s)
  2. Time management for the participants

Facilitator Time Management. As the facilitator, there are two points in time that are essential to your time management: 1. the planning stage and 2. the delivery.

During the planning, it’s a good idea to use a lesson plan in which you can estimate the amount of time you should spend on any given activity.  While some activities may take a little more (or a little less) time than you’ve estimated, you’ll know that if you want to get through your entire lesson, there shouldn’t be much variance from your initial plan.  Sometimes it’s difficult to estimate the time it will take to complete an activity, which is why it’s also a good idea to do a rehearsal in order to refine your time estimates.

During the delivery, it’s helpful to have a clock someplace in the room.  If there’s not a clock, then your watch or your mobile phone will do.  You’ll want to take your watch off or take your mobile phone out of your pocket and put it someplace where you’ll be able to check it discreetly.  If you get caught looking at your watch or pulling your mobile phone out of your pocket to check the time too often, your audience may feel you’re not very interested in them.

Participant Time Management. Breaking participants up for small group discussions, role plays, skills practice or other small group work is the best way to engage your audience and ensure they’re “getting it.”  However, this requires giving up some control.  It also requires active monitoring on the part of a facilitator to ensure the group is on task.  Giving clear instructions and a clear time limit are key pieces to successful small group work.  If the participants are not clear on how much time they’ve been given to complete the task or if they’re unclear on how much time remains to complete the task, small group activities can last much longer than you’ve budgeted in your lesson design.

The Mega Timer

The Mega Timer

Free Online Countdown Timer

Free Online Countdown Timer

When I break the audience up into small groups, I always show the audience exactly how much time they have for their work by using a Mega Timer placed conspicuously at the front of the classroom or by using an online countdown timer that can be displayed on the projection screen.

Do you have tips to stay on topic and on time?  Please add your thoughts to the comments section.

The Train Like A Champion Blog is published Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.  If you think someone else might find this interesting, please pass it along.  If you don’t want to miss a single, brilliant post, be sure to click “Follow”!  And now you can find sporadic, 140-character messages from me on Twitter @flipchartguy.