Working in a field that is “cutting edge” (relatively speaking) such as online education, e-learning, etc can sometimes feel like playing with a double-edged sword. Not that I have actually used such a sword in real-life (and I haven’t used a light sabre either, unfortunately). But my point is this – in any field that is characterized by innovation and growth, it is sometimes tempting to use a “new tool” simply because it is there. There is something cool about being one of the first to do something (eg, first to use YouTube, Facebook, Digg, Twitter, etc). However, there is also a downside to leading the way – sometimes we choose tools, resources, etc that do not work out as advertised, partly because no one else has field-tested them yet.
So … to help you navigate this process, I recommend that you read this brief article called “Web 2.0 Selection Criteria: Save Time Choosing an Appropriate Tool“, that lists five specific criteria that are relevant to online education. Also, go over to Go2Web20 and browse their list of resources – it is quite informative and helpful.
Have fun being innovative!