I took part in my first webinar yesterday, as opposed to sitting on the sidelines observing. It was run by Donald Taylor of the Learning and Skills Group on the topic “Modern Myths of Learning: the creative right brain”. I enjoyed it.

It wasn’t a topic that I was particularly interested in – I am a little sceptical of the right brain /  left brain thing – but the webinar itself was a worthwhile experience.

There were over a hundred people taking part, mostly UK, but some from Europe. We all connected in to the WebEx system by following a link emailed to us. Having used WebEx on my computer before, there was no setup involved. Donald talked through a series of slides while we watched and listened. I used my computer headphones, a few participants had some trouble with the quality, but there was an option to listen by telephone.

During the presentation Donald posed a number of questions. We gave our answers via the chat feature, and he picked up on those that caught his eye. With so many participants the responses scrolled by very quickly, and I’m sure some very worthy comments passed me by. There is the option to get a transcript afterwards though.

So did I find it useful?

Yes. I had come across much of the material during my teaching degree, but it was a good refresher with some interesting comments in the chat feed.

Yes. I would not have attended the talk if I had had to travel.

Maybe. I did find myself switching away to my email and other tasks on my second monitor during some of the session. Perhaps another example of the multi-tasking we think we can get away with with today’s technology, but which in reality can dilute a learning experience.

Maybe. I did find the scrolling back chat while Donald was presenting quite distracting, and I’m sure I missed some of the nuances of the talk itself. But I could have minimised it except when interaction was required.

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