#12×12 Day 1: Learning Tools

I can’t tell you how important I think learning is to everyone. Regardless of your age, your career or anything else if you’re not continually learning new things, you’re falling behind. So in that context, I’d like to kick-off this #12×12 series with 12 of my favorite learning tools.

For the past several years I’ve shared my Top 10 Learning Tools as part of Jane Hart’s awesome Top 100 Learning Tools project.

This list is very similar with a couple extras for good measure. How does your list compare to mine? Reply with a comment below or via social media using the hashtag #12×12


While Twitter fell from number one in Jane’s list this year, it still holds the top in my list. There is no better place to discover, connect, and learn with smart people in your field.  If we’ve not connected there yet, you can find me on Twitter as @tmiket.

If curious about how I use Twitter, take a minute to listen on this podcast where I talk about how I use Twitter and how a few other tools on this list relate connect with my personal knowledge management (PKM) system.



Feedly is the best way  to keep up with everything I want to keep up on. Feedly allows me to set up my own personalized flow of information, keep it organized exactly the way I want and makes it easy for me to share the best things I find with others via Twitter and other social media platforms.  Feedly is the hub for my personal knowledge management system (PKM).


Watch the video above to see how Buffer fits into my PKM system. In short, Buffer really simplifies how I share most of my social media posts and saves a lot of time by removing the inefficiencies of a more manual approach.


PowerPoint often gets a bad wrap. To steal a line from David Anderson “Blaming #PowerPoint for bad #elearning is like blaming #Word for poor instructional design.”

PowerPoint is an excellent option for:

If you’re interested in digging in deeper, I curate a continuously updated collection of PowerPoint resources over on Zeef.


WordPress is such a super useful tool with a wide variety of uses including  personal websites , grad school portfolio project, newsletter websites, and even a type of online “course” like this online social learning course, Learn Camp,  that has attracted participants from around the world.

Google Drive/Docs

Often the simplest tools are the ones that get used the most. Also, I am a big believer in removing as much friction as possible when collaborating with others. The Google suite of apps hits the sweet spot for capabilities and ease of use while allowing everyone to work right from their web browser. The co-authoring / file sharing features alone should make it part of your personal toolkit.

Friends don’t let friends email file attachments! 😎

If Google isn’t an option for you, check ot Office Online.


YouTube ranks high for me when I need to learn how to do something fast. From fixing lawn movers to replacing the lift gate struts on the family mini-van YouTube is often there for you in your time of need.


There is very rarely a work day that goes by without me using SnagIt. I’ve used a lot of other tools for capturing and annotating screen shots but none compare to SnagIt.


Need a professional looking graphic but you’re not a designer and you don’t have much time? No sweat! Pop over to canva.com and use one of their fantastic templates to crank out what you need in no time. They’ve got you covered for everything from social media graphics to presentation designs and much, much more.


Almost everyone has some kind of mailing list that can benefit from using Mailchimp. This is a huge time-saver and for L&D types you can extend and supplement your existing training/learning content; even tap into a self-running email course like this one for a recent Online Training Conference session I did with Brian Washburn.

Sign-up for the free “What L&D Should Steal from Marketing” email course. 


For a long time, I’ve been searching for a good way to organize and share the best resources around a particular topic. Zeef is designed to help people cut through the noise and help you point them to the best resources. For example, check out my pages:

Another really good one is Tracy Parish’s Free E-Learning Tools page.

Thanks for reading! I’d love to hear what else is on your list of top tools. Reply with a comment below or via social media using the hashtag #12×12

Day 1 of 12 | Check out the entire series here

Published by Mike Taylor

Born with a life-long passion for learning, I have the great fortune to work at the intersection of learning, design, technology & collaboration.

2 thoughts on “#12×12 Day 1: Learning Tools

  1. I also use Slack for group conversations with my PLN.
    And Audacity! Now that I’m a team of one, and also our voice-over talent, Audacity is a must-have for me.


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