Thinking Out Loud

Curated contributions by Catherine Lombardozzi


A selection of representative works, as of an artist.

(Definition from Webster’s New World Dictionary)

Every professional should have a portfolio of their work, and I appreciate that the definition above highlights that a portfolio often represents some form of artistry. I do think that the work I do to conceptualize frameworks, design workshops, and write articles and posts is something of an art – albeit art that is often a work-in-progress since ideas evolve over time.

Writing and teaching allow me to satisfy my mission in life – to help learning and development professionals be the best they can be so they can have impact through the work they do. I see my role as a translator – taking useful frameworks and research-based recommendations and making them practical for use in the real world. I hope I achieve that with my writing, courses, workshops, and presentations. I relish sharing what I have learned and – just as importantly – engaging with colleagues around important techniques, trends, and ideas. Writing and talking about a subject are sure ways to explore ideas, clarify thinking, seek input, enrich mutual understanding, and hear differing views.

This page collates my portfolio of public contributions since opening my consulting practice, which has focused on a number of key topics. Full disclosure: this page is as much for me as it is for you. These are lists and links I need to reference with some frequency, and it’s quite handy to have them all in one place.

I do hope you find it useful!

If you would like access to any of these materials, please email me for a copy. And if you’d like to explore development programs or consulting in these areas, contact me for a free consulting session to explore the possibilities.

Curated Portfolio of Public Contributions

 How can I know what I think till I see what I say. ~ Graham Wallas

(Also attributed to E.M. Forster)

Modern Learning Strategy

For well over a decade now, it has been patently obvious that the L&D field needs to expand it scope of influence well beyond formal training to encompass a wide range of modes for learning. Learning strategists and designers need to curate from the internet’s treasure trove of materials and leverage emerging techniques and activities to create a cohesive strategy – at an overarching level, and at the project level. My work on learning environment design and modern learning strategy has been meant to give learning professionals a place to start.



Podcasts and Recorded Webinars

Curated Resources

Professional Development Workshops

  • Talent development in the digital age
    ATD ICE, 2017 (full day, face-to-face)
  • Learning Ecosystems
    eLearning Guild Academy, 201x-xx (2 days plus webinars / dates)

Conference Sessions

  • Modern Blended Learning Workshop (6 hours)
    Blended Learning Online Conference
    Learning Guild (June 2022)
  • Talent development strategy
    ATD ICE (2019)
  • Talent development in the digital age
    Philadelphia Area ATD Chapter Meeting (2018)
  • Courses vs. Content curation
    Learning 2017
  • Talent development in the digital age
    ATD Nebraska Webinar (2017)
  • Curation: How to find the best learning resources
    Learning and Performance Ecosystem Conference, Learning Guild (2016)
  • Talent development in the digital age
    InSync Learning Bytes Webinar (2016)
  • Scaffolding learning in the ecosystem
    Learning and Performance Ecosystem Conference, Learning Guild (2015)
  • Promoting learning in the digital age: Designing learning environments
    Penn State Harrisburg invited presentation (2014)
  • Learning environments by design: Your role as curator
    Training (2013)
  • Learning environments by design: Curating for complex learning needs
    ASTD ICE (2013)
  • Learning environments by design
    ASTD Regional Conference, Philadelphia Area (2012)
  • Creating learning environments
    LaSalle Lunchtime Learning Webinar (2012)

Manager-Led Development

As L&D has embraced building a learning culture, supporting informal and self-directed learning, and learning in the flow of work, it becomes increasingly clear that line managers are critical partners in developing employees. We need to do all we can to support them in this sometimes unfamiliar role. While they don’t need to know all we know about how people learn, we can equip them with guidance on how to develop people and how to ensure their efforts have impact. That’s the impetus for my “leader’s guide to developing people” work.

Curated Resources

Conference Sessions

  • A Leader’s Guide to Developing People
    ATD Forum Connect Spark (September 2022)
  • The Leader’s Guide to Developing People
    Learning Leaders Alliance Winter Online Forum, Learning Guild (March 2022) / Recording available to Learning Leaders Alliance members

Self-Directed Learning

Several forces have converged to make do-it-yourself learning more popular and possible than ever. People can access learning resources through the internet and their network contacts; companies are not offering as many formal training opportunities; and people aren’t willing to sit through a formal workshop when their needs are more focused. But self-directed learning isn’t as easy as it looks. I have enjoyed exploring what long-standing theory and research can tell us about how to support self-directed learning without overengineering it. And those insights help us as individual learners as well.

Research Report


Podcasts and Recorded Webinars

Curated Resources

Conference Sessions
(Recordings available to members; contact me for more info.)

Learning Culture

The success of modern learning strategies – which include informal, self-directed, digital, social, and experiential elements – hinges on the quality of the organization’s learning culture. The concept of learning culture has been examined by theorists for decades in the form of research and models on culture, learning organizations, and organizational learning and we can use that foundation to inform our efforts to influence and cultivate learning culture.

Curated Resources

Professional Development Workshops

  • Cultivating a vibrant learning culture
    Learning 2021
  • Cultivating a strong learning culture
    Learning Solutions Digital experience, Learning Guild, 2021 (full day, online)

Conference Sessions
(Recordings available to members; contact me for more info)

  • Building a learning culture
    Learning Leaders Online Forum, Learning Guild (2021)
  • Role of learning culture in facilitating change
    Supporting Your Workforce Through Change, Learning Guild Online Conference (2020)
  • Fostering a learning culture
    ATD ICE (2015)

Social Learning

So much of what we learn is through and with other people; therefore, understanding the dynamics of social learning is critical to making effective recommendations. Theory and research in this arena divides by type of social relationship – communities of practice, coaching, peer-to-peer learning, mentoring, personal knowledge networks, and more. But some core principles emerge across those separate streams of literature, and we can draw from these foundations to support social learning in all forms.

White Paper


Curated Resources

Conference Sessions

  • Cultivating peer-to-peer learning
    Learning and Performance Ecosystem Conference, Learning Guild (2017 and 2018)
  • Connected: Research-based principles for enriching social learning
    Learning Solutions, Learning Guild (2015)
  • With help from our friends: Research-based social learning strategies
    ATD ICE (2014) and
    ASTD Regional Conference (2014)
  • Getting social: Professional development through social media
    Central PA ASTD Webinar (2013)

Scholarly Practice

I learned to appreciate the treasure trove of theory and research in our field through my doctoral studies and have since been a strong advocate for grounding our practice in the theory and research of the field. That mode of operating goes by several different names: scholarly practice, research-informed practice, evidence-based practice and more. In my work in this arena, I’ve tried to provide some guidance on how to be a scholar-practitioner with emphasis on doing that as a practitioner in the field, with all the opportunities, challenges, and constraints that brings.


Curated Resources

Professional Development Workshops

  • Mining for gold: Translating HRD theory and research for practice
    Academy of Human Resource Development Conference, 2013 and 2014
    With Martin Kormanik (half day, face-to-face)

Conference Sessions

  • Being SMART about practice: Practical guidelines for integrating research and practice
    ASTD Regional Conference, Philadelphia Area (2013)
  • Promoting brilliant ideas
    LaSalle Lunchtime Learning Webinar (2013)

Thriving as a Learning Professional

People who work in L&D roles often have trouble making room for their own professional development, but it’s critical that we do so. The skills that are needed are many and complex. Our work is changing fast, and new roles open up every day. Having been a learning professional for my entire career, I’m full of advice about how to succeed in this field. Hopefully, it’s good advice; certainly, I try to ensure it’s both evidence- and experience-based.

Book Chapter

Conference Sessions

Blog Series for InSync Training



Design Skills

Instructional design, which these days includes learning strategy design in all its forms, is at the core of my work. In developing professionals in our field, I’ve spent time analyzing both the art and the process of design as well as the expansive set of skills that are needed for mastery in this ever-evolving activity.

Curated Resources

Professional Development Workshops

  • Honing your consulting superpowers: A focus on needs analysis
    Learning Solutions, Learning Guild, 2019 (full day, face-to-face)
  • Unlocking creative solutions through design thinking
    L&D Phily, 2018 (half day, face-to-face)
  • ATD Essentials: Design thinking, 2017-2020
    ATD Education (3 1.5-hour webinars plus online activities)
  • Introduction to instructional design, 2012
    Trainer’s Edge Special Interest Group, Philadelphia ASTD (half day, face-to-face)

Conference Sessions

  • Brilliant ideas: Power of Design Thinking
    Delaware ATD Interest Group (2020)
  • Learning experience design
    PADLA (2018)
  • Nurturing creativity
    ATD ICE (2017)

Graduate Courses

It is my honor to serve as adjunct faculty for several graduate programs in human resource development. The professionals I meet in these classes give me faith in the future of our profession. I teach online, and I appreciate the opportunity to design these courses myself (for the most part). Syllabi available on request.

Clemson University
MS Human Resource Development (2022-present)
> Instructional Systems Design – MHRD 8470
> Consulting for Education and Industry – MHRD 8700

University of Georgia
MEd Human Resources and Organizational Development (2015, 2020 – present)
> Training Design and Delivery – LLOD 7040
> Career Development – LLOD 8410

LaSalle University
MS Instructional Design (beginning Fall 2023)
MS Instructional Technology Management (2012 – 2018)
> The Adult as Learner – ITM 605
> Emerging Technology – ITM 672
> eCollaboration – ITM 640
> Client Communication and Consulting – ITM 630

George Washington University
EdD Human and Organizational Learning (2008, 2011, 2017-2019, 2021-22)
Classroom-based executive program (courses co-designed and co-taught)
> Doctoral Dissertation Practicums
> Foundations of Human and Organizational Learning – HOL 8700
> Adult Learning – HOL 381

University of Louisville
MS Human Resources and Organizational Development (2018-2021)
> Instructional Design and Development – ELFH 672
> Adult and Organizational Learning – ELFH 661
> Performance Improvement – ELFH 671
> Strategic HR Leadership – ELFH 611

Gwynedd Mercy University
EdD Leadership in Higher Education (2016-2020)
> Dissertation Chair


Drexel University
MS Human Resource Development (2012 – 2014, 2016-2018)

Pennsylvania State University, Harrisburg
MS Training and Development (2014 – 2016)

Pennsylvania State University, Great Valley
MS Instructional Systems (2005-2012) | Classroom-based program

Chestnut Hill College
MS Instructional Technology (2007-2011) | Hybrid program

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Last updated: August 18, 2021 by Catherine Lombardozzi
This page is part of a collection of resources curated by Learning 4 Learning Professionals
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