In July and August ’07, the Centre forLearning and Performance Technologies polled “learning professionals”, bloggers, and others, asking these contributors to rank what their top learning tools were out of a list of 400 possible choices. The list ranged from the purchased and high tech software like Outlook to the old school paper and cardboard book.
Said one polled contributer, “The Book – if this weren’t a technology-focused list, this would be number one. Still, what other learning tool requires no power, is lightweight, carries so much information and can withstand being dropped in the bath? Gutenberg, 557 years on, we salute you!
Topping the list by order of popularity is the web browser Firefox – getting raves for it’s “ease of use,” functionality, and add-ons which “make it useful in many different situations.”
del.icio.us got the next most popular ranking among those polled. The social bookmarking tool was considered “indespensible” for 40% of the respondents for their personal learning.
And so the list went – Skype, GoogleSearch, PowerPoint, WordPress, Gmail, GoogleReader, and Word rounded out the top ten in popularity. Those creating the poll emphasized in their analysis that the rankings of any one individual item wasn’t really the point:
The ranking in the Top 100 Tools list is relatively unimportant – it is the range of tools that are being used for learning that is the key take-away here, and which demonstrates that (e-)learning is not just about online courses (which is still the view held by many people) – but includes education, training, information sharing, communication and collaboration.
I have to believe them on this one…after all, -“the written word” – the foundation by which all these other tools are creatively used, only tied as the 43rd most popular tool.