e-Learning Book Reviews

Our e-learning book reviews cover many of the areas that online learning techniques and technologies seek to address. Topics range from informal and social learning to talent management and much more – we hope they will be of value to you!

We’ll be producing regular reviews of publications – if you have published a book and would like a review, contact us.


e-Learning Book Reviews


53 Interesting Ways to Support Online Learning

by Rhona Sharpe, 2016. A handbook for teachers, tutors and trainers who are looking for proven and practical ideas that make online learning work in education and in the workplace. A really good book to be dipped in and out of when looking for ideas to make online learning in its many formats engaging and effective.


Next Learning Unwrapped by Nick van Dam

Next Learning Unwrapped by Nick van Dam. This is not a book predicting the future of e-learning and learning technologies, though some of the early chapters do discuss new learning approaches. However, the principle content that makes up this work is given to showcasing corporate distance (e-learning or online) success stories.


Online Colleges and E-Learning Best Practices

Affordable Colleges Foundation has created an e-learning guidebook. The main goal of the book is to help students learn online more effectively.

This includes 20 pages dedicated to distance learning basics, critical how-tos, and many of the misconceptions that surround the virtual classroom. And to make sure students have the right information from the right people, Affordable Colleges Foundation interviewed experts at The Sloan Consortium, The Open University, and more than a dozen other distinguished institutions.


Digital Learning Content A designer guide by Clive Shepherd

Written by renowned e-learning expert Clive Shepherd, and published by Onlignment, this super book provides an excellent guide to using the many genres of digital learning content to support education and training.


A Guide to authentic e-learning Jan Herrington, Thomas C Reeves, Ron Oliver

The book explains how when e-learning is designed to reflect realistic and authentic situations to explain often complex activities the learner achieves a much higher level of understanding, maximising their learning potential.


Michael Allen 2012 e learning annual

Still an excellent read – a collection of the e-learning industry’s brightest minds sharing their insights.


E Learning and the Science of Instruction by Clark & Mayer

E Learning and the Science of Instruction by gurus Ruth Colvin Clark & Richard E Mayer sub titled “Proven Guidelines for Consumers and Designers of Multimedia Learning”.


Rethinking pedagogy for a digital age

Rethinking pedagogy for a digital age, designing and delivering e-learning, edited by Helen Beetham and Rhona Sharp.


E-learning by design by William Horton

An excellent guide to key design principles.


E-Learning Theory and Practice by Caroline Haythornthwaite and Richard Andrews

This 2011 work, with a very simple but accurate title is aimed primarily at the education sector, but in our view contains several chapters that are of value to all those interested in e-learning, meaning- those in the corporate sector!


Live online Learning

Live online Learning – a facilitators guide is produced by onlignment and is available as a free publication under the Creative Commons license.


Designing mLearning by Clark Quinn

There seems to be little doubt that the introduction of smartphones and handheld devices have ushered in a new age of mobility that will have profound implications on how people interact with the world and with each other. In his book, Designing mLearning, Clark Quinn gives readers a solid understanding of how the concept of learning can work synergistically with mobile devices to create “m-learning.”


Social Learning by Jane Hart

Social Learning is, after all, not something you just talk or read about; it’s something you do! This Handbook looks at both the theory and practice.


Learning with Online and Mobile Technologies by Janet MacDonald and Linda Creanor

Subtitled ‘a student survival guide’, the publication (Gower, £15.99) – available in paperback and ebook formats – sets out to provide advice and tips on using technology to access, record, share and revise information.


The New Social Learning: A Guide to Transforming Organizations Through Social Media by Tony Bingham and Marcia Conner

Tony Bingham and Marcia Conner explain why social media is the ideal solution to some of the most pressing educational challenges organizations face today, such as a widely dispersed workforce and striking differences in learning styles, particularly across generations.


The Working Smarter Fieldbook September 2010 editionp

The Working Smarter Fieldbook, September 2010 (its third edition) is a work by the Internet Time Alliance, made up of Jay Cross, Jane Hart, Harold Jarche, Charles Jennings and Clark Quinn.


The Mobile Learning Edge by Gary Woodhill and David Fell

The Mobile Learning Edge with a subtitle of “Tools and Technologies for Developing Your Teams”


Informal Learning: Rediscovering the Natural Pathways That Inspire Innovation and Performance by Jay Cross

A practical handbook on informal learning, learning cultures, organisational bio-systems and how to get the best out of organisational and peer dynamics.


30 ways to use Social media to work and learn smarter by Jane Hart

There are 30 different sessions, each of which contains some introductory reading, examples, links to further resources and articles, as well as an activity to work on and a discussion topic. Purchasers also have free access to the online, social version of this Guide.


Disrupting Class: How Disruptive Innovation Will Change The Way The World Learns by Clayton Christensen, Michael B Horn & Curtis W Johnson

Latest in a series of works from Christensen a professor at Harvard business school, following the themes of innovation.


Creating Successful E-Learning by Michael Allen

A rapid system for getting it right, first time, every time. One of our very firm favourites, we have advised clients to use this approach several times and it works.


The Blended Learning Book by Josh Bersin

Best practices, proven methodologies and lessons learned.


Total Engagement: Using Games and Virtual Worlds to Change the Way People Work and Businesses Compete by Byron Reeves and J Leighton Read

Bryon Reeves and J Leighton Read believe that multiplayer games will redesign the parameters of ‘work’. To reinforce their beliefs and help them come to fruition, they have written ‘Total Engagement’ (Harvard Business Publishing, $29.95) and subtitled it: ‘using games and virtual worlds to change the way people work and businesses compete’. Reviewed by Bob Little.


Developing Innovation in Online Learning by Maggie McPherson and Miguel Nunes

“Developing Innovation in Online Learning: An Action Research Framework”. This book introduces action research as a method of developing e-learning modules and courses. It covers both the theory and practice of applying action research principles to develop online learning.


Learning Paths: Increase Profits by Reducing the Time it Takes Employees to Get Up to Speed by Jim Williams and Steven Rosenbaum

Increase profits by reducing the time it takes employees to get up-to-speed.


e-learning 2.0 by Anita Rosen

Proven practices and emerging technologies to achieve real results.


The Handbook of Blended Learning by Curtis Bonk and Charles Graham

The authors provide an important resource for the providers of adult learning to better understand the wide range of possibilities available when designing blended learning environments.


Designing Successful e-Learning by Michael Allen

Forget what you know about instructional design and do something interesting!


If Disney Ran Your Hospital by Fred Lee

What…take a look if your e-learning project is struggling to overcome organisational inertia and complacency (or at least read the review.


Interaction Design by Jenny Preece, Yvonne Rodgers and Helen Sharp

Beyond human-computer interaction.


E-tivities: The Key to Active Online Learning by Gilly Salmon

Five-stage model for learning on-line.


Made to Stick by Chip and Dan Heath

Illuminating, interesting, wiity and even inspirational book for everyone who wishes to communicate, influence or inspire others. Why do some ideas thrive while others die? And how do we improve the chances of worthy ideas succeeding?


Just Ask Leadership by Gary Cohen

Although this is primarily a book on business leadership, it offers real insights in terms of knowledge delivery : we can elicit partial or subconscious knowledge from learners with surprisingly good results and move them quickly into new areas of knowledge.


The Accelerated Learning Handbook by Dave Meier

Accelerated learning can deliver contextual, enjoyable and effective learning within the workplace. Although originally designed to link the classroom to the workplace it clearly offers opportunities for the use of online diagnostic tools, games, e-stories, Learning 2.0 and Web 2.0 and e-learning.


The Art of Changing the Brain by Dr Zull

The physical activity of learning in the brain and how to deliver great learning.


Blended Learning and Online Tutoring: Planning Learner Support and Activity Design by Janet MacDonald

Janet MacDonald’s book offers advice on strategies for successful blended learning programmes.


The 80/20 Principle by Richard Koch

Can achievement and success come from doing less? This is the claim of Richard Koch who has built his own career and reputation on the age old principle that 80% of our results flow from just 20% of the causes.


Communicating Strategy by Phil Jones

Designed to help readers communicate their strategy in a compelling and effective way.


Start Your Own e-Learning Business by Entrepreneur Press and Mike Hogan

Using computers for education and training, an industry that barely existed a decade ago, is a fast-growing business opportunity for enterprising people who enjoy helping others learn and who are comfortable with computers.


Managing Interactive Media by Elaine England and Andy Finney

This latest (fourth) edition of Elaine England and Andy Finney’s guide to managing interactive projects.


Everything You Ever Needed To Know About Training by Kaye Thorne and David Mackey

Not only examines identifying, designing, delivering and evaluating training but also offers advice on how to run a training business.


Free Learning Management Systems

A short work giving a very succinct overview of the available free Learning Management Systems.


The Guide to Learning and Study Skills by Sue Drew and Rose Bingham

Intended for those in higher education and the world of work, the book argues that skills are needed for reflection, analysis, communication and recording information in order to produce high quality work, engage with others and perform well in exams.


Beyond HR: The New Science of Human Capital by John W Boudreau and Peter M Ramstad

Managing people is vital to organisational success – and being able to do this well is among business leaders’ top concerns.


The Essential Guide to Managing Talent by Kaye Thorne and Andy Pellant

Kaye Thorne and Andy Pellant, explore the factors that tend to inhibit the release of talent in organisations and then encourage readers to apply the reverse logic that, by not inhibiting talent in an organisation, you can therefore encourage it.


The Talent Powered Organization: Strategies for Globalization, Talent Management and High Performance by Peter Cheese, Robert J Thomas and Elizabeth Craig

The ‘z’ in the book’s title, along with its subtitle of ‘globalization, talent management and high performance’, proclaims that the inspiration and impetus for this publication comes from the USA.


The Game-Changer: How You Can Drive Revenue and Profit Growth with Innovation by A.G Lafley and Ram Charan

AG Lafley and Ram Charan’s book (Kogan Page, £15) is intended to show business leaders how innovation can be an intentional, disciplined and reliable way to convert ideas into revenue and profit on a consistent, on-going basis.


Project Orientated Leadership by Ralf Müller and J Rodney Turner

In its pages, Müller and Turner set out leadership models of managerial, intellectual and emotional leadership. They also explain how these models can be applied within projects to lead processes, function and people – to ensure an ethical and inclusive approach to projects and programmes.


Managing Conflict at Work: Understanding and Resolving Conflict for Productive Working Relationships by Clive Johnson and Jackie Keddy

Conflict is said to cost UK businesses some £40bn a year, yet developing techniques to manage this conflict rarely makes it onto corporate training schedules and is usually absent from leaders’ priorities.


10 Steps to Successful Social Networking for Business by Darin E. Hartley

This is a useful little book, clearly laid out with 10 steps as the title suggests, looking at a wide range of social networking options. It focuses on business benefits, and on interaction with customers more than employees.


The World is Open: How Web Technology is Revolutionizing Education by Curtis J. Bonk

As technologies have become more available, even in the most remote reaches of the world, and as more people contribute a wealth of online resources, the education world has become open to anyone anywhere. In “The World Is Open”, education technology guru Curtis Bonk explores ten key trends that together make up the “WE–ALL–LEARN” framework for understanding the potential of technology’s impact on learning in the 21st century.


Empowering Online Learning: 100+ Activities for Reading, Reflecting, Displaying and Doing by Curtis J. Bonk and Ke Zhang

With a solid theoretical foundation and concrete guidance and examples, this book can be used as a handy reference, a professional guidebook, or a course text. The authors intend for it to help online instructors and instructional designers as well as those contemplating such positions design, develop, and deliver learner–centered online instruction.