Friday 10 September 2010

Call for papers: Digital Futures: learning in a connected world

In the UK (and the world) there are a few pioneers leading the way in the field of innovative education, Steve Wheeler is one of them. Steve is chair for the 6th Plymouth eLearning conference, which will take place in Plymouth from April 6 - 8, in 2011.

This year the conference will focus on innovation including emerging technologies in education and training. So all of you k12 teachers, university pioneers, and trainers... start typing your abstract (only 200 - 300 words, so no excuse not to send it).

This years keynote speakers are:
Stephen Heppell: Stephen's ICT career (he is credited with being the person who put the C into ICT), began with the UK government's Microelectronics Education programme (MEP) in the early 80s, after he had been teaching for some years. Stephen founded and ran Ultralab for a quarter of a century, building it into one of the most respected research centres in e-learning in the world - at one time Ultralab was the largest producer of educational CD-ROMs in Europe - before leaving it in 2004 to found his own global and flourishing policy and learning consultancy which now has an enviable portfolio of international projects all round the world.

John Davitt: John Davitt is a writer, broadcaster and a digital toolmaker. He has worked in the education sector for the last twenty-five years as an English teacher, senior manager and regional adviser with the EU Flexible Learning Project. As a journalist he wrote for the UK Guardian, The Times and The Observer, with a regular feature in the Education Guardian. John has worked extensively with teachers in schools in UK, USA, China and Africa and he is committed to leveling the playing field regarding access to new learning opportunities. He has recently developed The Learning Score a visual tool that lets teachers map out and share learning intentions as a graphical event - rather like a music score. His latest project is the open source Learning Event Generator ( and the Rag - an interactive learning tool for the iPhone where you can literally shake up a learning challenge. His new book '"World of Difference" will be published in Spring 2011.

And I will keynote as well... and my idea is to go for a vision of the future (+ linking it to some mobile projects I am involved in)... really go wild - for how else can one stay in balance with the other two really wonderful speakers? And let's be honest, getting asked to speak by Steve Wheeler feels awesome!

So, come over and join by sending in your paper. The conference organizers are seeking a range of papers which explore and address the 7 themes listed below:

  • ICT in Teaching: ICT in Teaching: Use of ICT to enhance teaching and learning - use of new technologies in the classroom; wireless technologies, interactive whiteboards, multimedia, videoconferencing, handhelds, laptops, data logging, specialist software.
  • Teacher Experiences: Teachers making a transition into e-learning - practitioners own attempts, benefits and implications, case studies
  • Students Experiences: Motivational factors needed to underpin effective ICT use or e-learning - learner empowerment, online autonomy, discussion groups, synchronous/asynchronous experiences.
  • e-Pedagogy: Teaching and learning using technology - developing new theories about e-learning, developing new practices, models of practice, e-tutoring and practitioner skills development.
  • Managed Learning Environments: Use of WebCT, Blackboard and other specialist software packages, advantages, disadvantages, case Studies, how teaching and learning develops within MLEs.
  • Societal Concerns: Issues underpinning the development and practice of e-teaching and learning - technophobia, technology dependency, digital divide, network security.
  • Operational issues: Funding for research and development, institutional attempts to invest in ICT and e-learning strategies to make them effective and relevant, support issues, management and leadership of ICT.
  • Web 2.0: Wikis, blogs, podcasting, and other online social networking systems for learning and teaching.

You are invited to submit a 200-300 word abstract which is relevant and meaningful to one or more of the themes listed above. All papers will be refereed by a panel of specialist practitioners and academics. The panel will also consider papers where presenters are geographically remote and where a suitable technology mediated method is used to deliver the paper.

Deadline for abstract submission is: January 14, 2011

Authors will be informed of the panel’s decision by: February 11, 2011

Accepted papers will be published in the conference proceedings available to all delegates on the day of the conference. Accepted paper abstracts will also be published on the conference website.

Papers will not be included in the conference proceedings unless at least one author has registered for the conference by the author’s deadline of February 18, 2011

So where will my keynote start from? I guess, somewhere around here (but definitely less sleek):