When we thought about having an international online Gasta a year ago, few of us could have imagined the impact that the pandemic would have on all of us. Sadly, at the time of writing the WHO has reported over 123 million caes and over 2.71 million deaths, millions have lost their livelihoods and life as we know is so far from normal that I have run out of superlatives.

The original plan of #GastaGoesGlobal was that I would ask seven leading people in the TEL community and invite them to reflect on what (online) education might look like going forward. The past year has provided us with insight and experiences that may well temper; it will certainly inform our thoughts about where the future lies.

The idea of the Gasta is to get people involved and keep the seven presenters (Maha Bali, Martin Weller, Leigh Graves Wolf, Mark Brown, Frank Rennie, Sheila MacNeill, Tony Bates) to a strictly enforced five-minute limit in a spirit of togetherness in a slightly lighthearted way. This is not intended to be disrespectful; I certainly acknowledge the loss that many have endured, but I would also suggest that coming together in such a format raises the spirits.