The HEA have established an e-learning pathfinder programme as a follow on to the e-learning benchmarking exercise and I am acting as a so called ‘critical friend’ (please don’t make me have to explain what the heck that is!!! I’m still trying to work it out myself!!!) to four of the projects - Brunel, Cambridge, Reading and South Bank. I have to admit I approached the role with some trepidation but actually its proving to be really interesting. Each of the projects are trying to bring about strategic change in e-learning within their institutions (my short hand - the main website ’says it proper’) very much linked into their local context. Not surprisingly the approaches are very different but also there are interesting cross themes emerging, such as: mechanisms for ensuring cross-institutional buy in - and the role of embedding and communication strategies, what kinds of development are needed for staff and students, how can we ensure the student voice is taken account of, etc. One of the things the four projects have recently being looking at is how an evidence based approach to gathering and representing e-learning might be used in this context. We have a workshop planned later in the year to look at this in more detail.