Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Where Learning Practitioners Go to Learn: Online Educa

One of the most useful conferences I go to each year is Online Educa, held annually in Berlin in November/December. It's a gathering of several thousand people from all over the world who work, live and breathe technology-supported learning.

It follows a rather traditional format of plenary and parallel break-out sessions on a wide variety of topics. And at the same time, there is much tolerance for the truly weird and wonderful in terms of stories, cases and experiments in learning. Not only do they get top speakers to present in plenary - I have written in the past about big ideas presented there by George Siemens on Connectivism, for example, and Professor Sugata Mitra of the Hole in the Wall experiments in India - conceptually they are also really pushing the envelope when it comes to knowledge and new media. I remember first hearing about knowledge management in stock and flow terms here in 2006, and most recently of the future in cloud computing. I wrote a post this year with all the collected new ideas (for me) called Ahead of the Curve; I always have ample new ideas when I come away from one of these conferences.

This community is continually testing new techniques - here is where I used Twitter so successfully for social learning (see my post on the Two-Day Total Twitter Immersion), where I met Jay Cross first and learned about his paradigm-shifting work in informal learning, and met some of his colleagues from Internet Time (see my post on Follow the Leaders). It's where I experienced a Pecha Kucha, and saw a Panel using a backchannel (Backnoise.com) to "talk" to the audience. And where Jane Hart who runs the online Centre for Learning and Performance Technologies speaks, where university programmes talk about how they are using virtual worlds and mobile technology for learning. It is always an exciting two days.

I just received a "Call for Papers" message from the team that runs Online Educa asking me to post it on my blog, and in this particular case, I agreed - here you go! If you have an innovative learning process, or something to share, this is the place to go to interact with a trending learning community:

OEB 2010 Call for Papers Open Now

Online Educa Berlin, the largest global e-learning conference for the corporate, education and public service sectors, has opened its Call for Papers. Deadline for receipt of all proposals is 14 May 2010. The 16th edition of Online Educa Berlin will take place from 1-3 December 2010 at the Hotel InterContinental Berlin.

Under the banner of Learning for All, this year's conference looks for contributions relating to the four core themes: Learning Content, Learning About Learning, Learning Ecosystems and Learning Environments. Each of these themes should be explored within the context of either Institutional Learning, Workplace Learning or Lifelong Learning, or any combination of these three.

Online Educa Berlin is the key networking event for the international e-learning and technology-supported learning and training industry, bringing together more than 2000 learning professionals and newcomers from around the world.

For more information: www.online-educa.com/programme

Maybe I'll see you there!