Skip to main content
The iDeas Podcast

The iDeas Podcast

By Tom McDowall
Instructional Designers sharing ideas and drinking tea (and other assorted beverages) really says it all. I'll be sharing conversations and a cup of tea with people from every part of the learning and development community.

If you'd like to support the show, why not buy me a beer:
Listen on
Where to listen
Apple Podcasts Logo

Apple Podcasts

Breaker Logo


Castbox Logo


Google Podcasts Logo

Google Podcasts

Overcast Logo


Pocket Casts Logo

Pocket Casts

RadioPublic Logo


Spotify Logo


Currently playing episode

Episode 10. The Challenges of Adult Learning (ft Cheryl Oberlin)

The iDeas Podcast

The Big Fat Instructional Design Review of the Year (2020)
2020 has been rough. So why not round out the year with some fun? Join me and panel of my fellow learning geeks for an honest, and hopefully entertaining, review of instructional design in 2020. See the original show here: VOTE FOR THE L&Dism OF THE YEAR HERE: The deadline for voting is 10PM UK-time on the 18th December. Your host: Tom McDowall - The Panel: Cara North: Julia Huprich: Joey (Joseph Senart: Dr Robin Sargent: Anja Hartleb-Parson : Support the channel: Cara's awesome L&D merch:
December 11, 2020
Episode 12. Visual Design in eLearning (ft Craig Sybert)
In this episode, I chat with Craig Sybert about the role of visual design in creating effective eLearning. We also discuss why LMSs look the way they do, our personal preferences when it comes to background music whilst learning and if gravity is real (sort of). If you'd like to keep the conversation going, you can find out details and details about the Big Fat Instructional Design Review of 2020 below. Craig Sybert LinkedIn: Envolve Media: Tom McDowall LinkedIn: The Big Fat Instructional Design Review of the Year 2020 YouTube: Twitch: Support the Show:
December 2, 2020
Episode 11. From Teacher to Instructional Designer (ft Justin Talbot)
This week I spoke with Justin Talbot, a teacher and educator currently expanding his experience and skills into the wider digital learning world. he shares his experience of pivoting between the two fields and we discuss some of the big things the corporate and educational worlds can learn from each other. If you'd like to keep the conversation going, get in touch: Tom McDowall Linked In: Justin Talbot LinkedIn: Portfolio: Twitter: @talbotteach Blog: Support the Show: Resources from this show: *Dual Coding with Teachers: Any links marked with a * are affiliate or in some way monetised links that help support the show and other related projects.
November 20, 2020
Episode 10. The Challenges of Adult Learning (ft Cheryl Oberlin)
In this episode, I chat with Cheryl Oberlin about the challenges and opportunities of adult learning. Cheryl shares her own experiences in creating safe and effective learning environments as well as some key things we should all be considering. If you want to continue the conversation, you'll found our details below: Tom McDowall: LinkedIn: Cheryl Overlin: LinkedIn: During the show, Cheryl mentioned a platform called elearning launch. Check it out here:  Support the Show:
November 14, 2020
Episode 9. Building Your Brand (ft Vanessa Alzate)
ATTENTION: The recording quality of this episode is significantly lower than usual. Please be assured the problem microphone has now been identified and dealt with (fixed, don't worry, we didn't hurt it). In this episode, I chat with Vanessa Alzate, CEO of Anchored Training about the process she went through when creating her brand. We also talk about some of the biggest mistakes L&D professional make when creating their brand and what we should all do the start the process the right way. If you want to keep the conversation going, you can find us using the details below: Tom McDowall LinkedIn: Vanessa Alzate Youtube: LinkedIn: Instagram: Website: Support the Show:
October 30, 2020
Episode 8. A.I Revolution or Marketing Buzz? (ft David Kofoed Wind)
In this episode, I chat with David Kofoed Wind about his career in EdTech, the power of peer review and how A.I is reshaping the learning landscape. If you want to keep the conversation going, get in touch: Tom McDowall: David Kofoed Wind: Support the Show: Join of FREE Discord community:
October 16, 2020
Episode 7. Awesome Portfolios and IDOL Courses Academy (ft Dr Robin Sargent)
In this episode, I chat with Dr Robin Sargent about how she became an instructional designer, what changes she's seen in the industry during her career and what makes an awesome portfolio. We also discuss why IDOL Courses Academy has been so successful. If you want to keep the conversation going, our details are here: Tom McDowall: Dr Robin Sargent: IDOL Courses: IDOL Courses Academy: Join the Discord server today:
October 9, 2020
Episode 6. The eLearning Revolution (ft Allie York)
In this episode, I chat with Allie York, learning a development specialist and founder of York & Yours - Creative Education Solutions. We discuss her route to starting her own business, the divide between the corporate and academic learning worlds and the ongoing eLearning revolution. Allie shares some insights into the role digital learning can play in driving interest and engagement in STEM subjects and we define what we mean by meaningful interactions. Contact Details You can get in touch with me or Allie using the link below. Tom McDowall: Allie York: York & Yours: York & Yours: Supporting the Community Love the show and want to be part of our new learning community? Join the discord server today! It's totally free and all about sharing ideas and experiences.
September 11, 2020
Episode 5. Build your own toolkit (ft Amanda Nguyen)
This week, we hear from Amanda Nguyen about her career in L&D, how her journey has shaped her design philosophy and the need for us all the build our toolkits. We'd love to hear which tools are in your tool kit from software to gear and anything else you use to create great content. You can get in touch with us using the details below: Tom McDowall: Amanda Nguyen: Amandalxd:
August 28, 2020
Episode 4. Variety is the spice of L&D (ft Shirleen Wong)
In this episode, I have a chat with Shirleen Wong following her being named "Best Learning Designer 2020" by winning The Show as part of The Learning Con. We discuss how we ended up with careers in L&D, good whiskey and why the variety of paths people to take into L&D is a wonderful thing. If you'd like to get in touch, all our details are below. Tom McDowall: Shirleen Wong: If you'd like to be on the show, drop me an email: or message me here on the Anchor platform.
August 21, 2020
Episode 3. Do I have to become a graphic designer? (ft Joe Senart)
In this episode, I chat with Joe Senart, trainer, instructional design, graphic designer and author of the brilliant 'Training is BLANK' blog and YouTube channel. Between talk of beer, Star Wars and Joe's Dog, we discuss the role of graphic design in learning design, what you can do without any specialist software, and why we all need to respect fonts more. If you'd like to get in touch all our details are below. AND make sure you check out Joe's blog and YouTube channel. Tom McDowall: Joe Senart: Training is BLANK: If you want to come on the show, get in touch using the message button on our homepage or drop me an email:
August 14, 2020
Quick Thought: Desirable Difficulty
In this series of short episodes, I give my take on key learning design principles and theories. In this thought, what is desirable difficulty? And what role does it play in effective learning design? Resources on desirable difficulty: Teaching with desirable difficulties: The modern language journal:
August 12, 2020
Episode 2. Developer or eLearning Creative? (ft Luke Westwood)
This week I'm catching up with Luke Westwood, founder of 'The eLearning Mentor' and full-time developer. We talk about career opportunities in digital L&D and what we can all do to help people find their feet as they start out. If you’d like to get in touch you’ll find our details below. And, if you’d like to come on the show for a chat, get in touch using the link below. Luke Westwood: eLearning Mentor: McDowall: on the show:
August 7, 2020
Episode 1. UI & UX in digital learning design with Phill Lord-David
In the first episode of this podcast, I catch up with Phill about the role of UI and UX in digital learning design. How visual design should play a supporting role and reveal my distaste for the term ‘gamification, without using a single word. If you’d like to get in touch you’ll find our details below. And, if you’d like to come on the show for a chat, get in touch using the link below. Phill Lord-David: McDowall: on the show:
July 31, 2020