UMW to Host Open and Digital Learning Resources Conference

This inaugural conference, co-sponsored by the Office of the Governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia, State Council of Higher Education for Virginia, and Virginia Community College System, will take place on Thursday, March 7 in the Woodard Campus Center.  Aside from serving as conference host, UMW is listed as one of the “partner institutions” responsible for helping to bring about this event.

The conference will feature a mix of different formats – panels, presentations, plenary sessions, a gallery of displays about various digital resources, and so forth.  Each higher education institution in Virginia was invited to send a six-person team to the event.  UMW will have a larger presence than that; so far, 25 persons from UMW have registered for the event and 8 have submitted proposals to present.

While the conference agenda is still being finalized, this range of likely topics will give you a sense of what’s possibly going to be discussed.  Examination of pedagogical approaches such as flipping the classroom, “gamification,” and collaborative online strategies will likely be on tap.  Sessions on open educational resources (open textbooks, open-source content, MOOCs) are also anticipated.  Strategies for incorporating new technologies and effectively managing costs will be another possible area of discussion.

The goal of the conference is to bring together a wide range of persons to engage in the sharing of their expertise and innovative ideas about a broad array of digital learning resources and networked educational experiences.  Individuals and institutional groups will have the opportunity to showcase their projects and to make important connections with colleagues working in similar veins at other locations.

Jim Groom, Director of the Division of Teaching and Learning Technologies and his DTLT colleagues have been busily arranging to enable this meeting to occur.  Complete details, and the link to register online, are available at the conference website.  Perhaps you’ll have an opportunity to join in the event, even though it’s occurring during our spring break.  It looks like a potentially exciting and productive conference.  Just remember to register for the event you decide to join in.


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