On becoming a Certified Member of ALT #CMALT

After many years of procrastination and several long haul flights was successful in completing my CMALT Accreditation. For those that don’t know the ‘CMALT Accreditation Framework provides pathways to peer-assessed accreditation for Learning Technology professionals in the UK and internationally’ and is administered by the Association for Learning Technology.

Gaining CMALT has been on my list for a number of years, and if nothing else I wanted to do it to avoid those awkward conversations when I was pitching CMALT to colleagues or asked to provide feedback on other people’s portfolios without having completed the accreditation myself.

My portfolio is available for anyone to view/comment and has also been added to the list of shared portfolios (you will need to be logged in to the ALT site as a member to view the list).

Over the years my portfolio has been drafted in different formats. First it was written in markdown with the idea of committing it to a Github repo, then it was a Google Doc (the version I submitted), which I exported to this site. I’m in complete admiration of people like Lorna Campbell who worked on an open portfolio. At the end of the day I think completing your CMALT is about finding what process is going to work for you. Below I’ve included some tips that worked for me:

Distraction free writing

For the last 5 years I’ve been fortunate to have been invited to the global summit of Google Developers Experts which is usually hosted in Mountain View. Whilst traveling across the Atlantic I found having 8 hours where I was completely uncontactable perfect for drafting my CMALT … unless you could find my fax number:

Best before date

When you have to rewrite sections because they are now out of date, it’s time to knuckle down and get across the finish line.

The guidance is your friend

Keep looking at the Guidelines for CMALT candidates and assessors. I found it useful to remind myself of the four principles and values, to the point that I copied them in to the beginning of each section I was writing:

  • A commitment to exploring and understanding the interplay between technology and learning.
  • A commitment to keep up to date with new technologies.
  • An empathy with and willingness to learn from colleagues from different backgrounds and specialist options.
  • A commitment to communicate and disseminate effective practice.

It was also useful to keep in mind the examples of strong and weak statements and in particular that keeping your portfolio succinct will make both your and the assessors life easier.

Final tip is don’t forget there is an amazing CMALT community out there willing to provide help and guidance. Not only will you find lots of shared portfolios, but also posts like this one with our personal tips and those connecting in the #CMALT hashtag.