Wednesday, 26 October 2011

CPD23 Thing 23

Image by Jcgoforth
…And so here we are: Thing 23. 'The End'.

CPD23 Things has finally come to a close and I’ve blogged my way through each Thing over the past few months. The final Thing is to produce a six-word story to sum up the experience, and I’ve wracked my brains for this. I can’t adequately condense it into so few words, but here is my attempt: ‘hectic but enjoyable; I learnt lots!’

What was good about CPD23 Things?
I really enjoyed this course, so so soooo much! I hadn’t heard of some the tools introduced to us, and others I was already familiar with. Highlights for me include Thing 2 browse other blogs. I felt this worked well with Thing 3, as it reinforced the ideals of personal brands. In the early days of CPD23, I decided to follow various blogs purely by their layout; at this stage blog content was low, so aesthetic first impressions played a part in deciding which to follow. It really made me think about the first impressions my blog created for readers and I was thrilled to have positive comments posted regarding it.

Thing 3 personal brand. I’ve been in touch with a graphic designer where I work and he has agreed to create a logo for BtB. This had long been in the back of my mind, but Thing 3 impressed upon me the importance of personal brand when considering my online presence.

Thing 4 introduced me to Twitter. I’d be meaning to explore Twitter for yonks but never got round to it. It took a while to get ‘into’ it, but I’m glad I stuck with it. I keep it as a professional profile and follow only accounts related to libraries and the information profession. I’ve picked up some really valuable information from Twitter (it’s how I first heard about Library Camp) and made some connections through it. I’ve both given and received information requested through Twitter which I wouldn’t have been able to do elsewhere.

Thing 7 professional networks. Thanks to Thing 7, I am currently waiting for a handover of the secretarial archive for the Cilip West Mids branch. I blogged that I’d like such a role and people commented that – coincidentally – such a role was vacant. I enquired, attended a meeting and volunteered. Great stuff!

CPD23 also helped me at work a great deal. Being an experienced blogger, I helped other team members who were less certain of it. At the time the course started, I had been in my new job just a few weeks and it really helped break the ice with some people. It made me feel valid too – I didn’t know anything about my new work environment but I was still able to contribute.

What was bad about CPD23 Things?
I thought Thing 6 and Thing 12 repeated themselves. I tried not to rehash what I’d already written, but I wasn’t quite clear in the distinction between them.

I felt the workload was a little unbalanced. Some weeks only one tool was introduced, other weeks it was three. Sometimes it was pretty hectic trying to master each of the tools, and I’m afraid during these particular weeks I just focussed on one.

I couldn’t see a use in some of the tools. Pushnote, Evernote etc didn’t suit me or my needs. However, my awareness has increased and I am thankful for that. Although I may not know how to utilise all these tools I can at least suggest them to library users looking for such things.

What next?
I’ve not quite finished! Thing 17 data visualisation really interested me. I like the look of Prezi and I am determined to have a crack at producing one. I’ve genuinely not had time to do so yet but - at some point in the future – I will get round to it. I promise!

CPD23 has also made me think of my future; I wonder where I’ll be in 5 years time, careers-wise? I discussed my aims as part of Thing 10 and am hopefully on the way to achieving one of them (being active on a library committee).

I really took well to some of the tools introduced to me by CPD23 and intend to continue using them. I’ve made a few connections and found some great blogs to follow. It also reignited my blog; I devoted more time to it and made a conscious effort to use images to make posts more user-friendly. I’d never done a self-directed online course before, but I really enjoyed it. I do, however, wish there was a downloadable certificate of some sort. I’ve spent many hours working through the programme over the past few months and it’d be nice to have something to mark the completion of it.

My final thoughts on the matter: Well done to the CPD23 team, and to everyone else who completed it!


  1. congratulations on finishing cpd23! I agree that having something fresh and agenda-free to contribute to the workplace was a main benefit of the course.

  2. Well done! I enjoyed your reflection on CPD23.