Monday, April 9, 2012

Post University Online Learning Conference 2012 speakers announced

FORESIGHT FOR THE FUTURE: Reserve your spot now
to hear what's next for online education and your role within it
A couple weeks ago we told you that education futurist Steve Hargadon will be keynoting Post University's second annual Online Learning Conference on April 20 at the Mattatuck Museum in Waterbury, Conn. We also told you that we'd be announcing the full list of speakers and sessions soon. Today, I wanted to pull the curtains off that information!

As I wrote about in my last post, this year's conference theme is "Shaping the Future: Driving Innovation in Online Higher Education." After Steve sets the tone for the day in his opening address, "The Future of Education," a full array of thought leaders, educators, and researchers will bring you the latest news, information, and innovations that are driving change in higher education -- and in particular, online higher education.

Roger Travis from the University of Connecticut will talk about an alternate reality game course in "How to Turn an Online Course into a Mission to Save the World." Hendree Milward, a math instructor from Tunxis Community College will talk about a lean, mean media-rich social messaging system called Edmodo in "Discuss -- Quick, Light and Mobile."

Dr. Jerald Cole of the University of Bridgeport (now studying at Harvard) will present "Uses of Social Media in Education: Modes, Methods, Media and Architectures." New vocabulary will be in full force: texting, tagging, wikiing, and blogging with rich media integration -- all things that will be sure to generate good discussion.

There will also be a workshop, "Introduction to Twitter," by Post University's Academic Program Manager for Instructional Design, Jennifer Bouchard. Participants will have the opportunity to learn how to use Twitter in their own education context. A research-based session on online discussion board usage related to workload and value will be presented by Post University's Online MBA Degree Program faculty member, Zvi Goldman, Ph.D.

Those are just some of the highlights! The complete list of Online Learning Conference 2012 sessions and speakers includes:
  • "Workload and Value Perceptions of Adult MBA Learners and Instructors partaking in Asynchronous Discussion"
  • "Uses of Social Media in Education: Modes, Methods, Media and Architectures"
  • "Innovative Active Learning Instructional Activities"
    • Daniel Mercier, Assistant Director at the Institute of Teaching and Learning at University of Connecticut 
    • Oskar Harmon, Associate Professor of Economics at University of Connecticut 
    • Andy DePalma, Assistant Extension Professor of Continuing Studies at University of Connecticut
    • Roger Travis, Ph.D., MA, Associate Professor of Literature, Culture and Languages at University of Connecticut
  • "Individualized Instruction for All: Using Knewton Adaptive Learning to Improve Education" 
  • "Enhancing the Internship Experience with Blackboard Vista"
In my last post, I told you that Pearson, Cengage, and McGraw Hill are sponsoring the event. Blackboard has also signed on as a sponsor, and all four sponsors will have tables at the conference. In addition, Pearson will share its Knewton Adaptive Learning, Panopto, and Smarthinking technologies, and Cengage will give a presentation on its MindTap technology.

The Twitter hashtag for Post University's Online Learning Conference 2012 is #OLC2012. It's the best source on Twitter for all action, reaction, questions, and answers before, during, and after the event. So if you're attending the conference, be sure to include #OLC2012 in your tweets. If you're unable to attend, follow #OLC2012 for event-day coverage. We'll also be tweeting updates leading up to the event, as well as video coverage after the event.

Rumblings of change are being heard across the landscape of higher education as bricks and mortar turn into clicks and mortar. New words and phrases that were not even a part of the higher education vocabulary a few years ago have become commonplace: social media, hybrid courses to flip classrooms, open courseware, or mobile technologies. The 18- to 22-year-old student is becoming a smaller part of the post-secondary market as adults of all ages add certifications and degrees to their quest for lifelong learning.

That's why we hope you'll join us for the Online Learning Conference, and take away new insights to help you make sense of this change. There are many exciting sessions planned for the day leading up to a wine and cheese reception at the end of the conference -- a perfect opportunity to network and use this new vocabulary of change for higher education.

I believe this is an incredibly exciting time for higher education. I look forward to April 20 as a wonderful opportunity to share that excitement with colleagues around the region. Spots are filling up fast, so I hope you can join us! Register for the Online Learning Conference 2012 now.

We will continue to blog about updates leading up to the conference, and will be streaming live video coverage from the event. Stay tuned for more information.