Distance Teaching & Learning Conference to emphasize innovative strategies, tools for online learning this fall

Illustration of tidy work-from-home office with video conference on computer screen

With fully online instruction a growing likelihood for many colleges and universities this fall, organizers of the 2020 Distance Teaching & Learning (DT&L) conference are putting the final touches on a dynamic agenda designed to address the latest ideas, strategies and technologies for distance learning in higher education.

“This is the conference higher education administrators, faculty and instructional designers need right now,” says conference director Wendy Fritz. “Online teaching and learning is a certainty for every institution this fall and it’s our goal to help DT&L attendees prepare. We are curating the best speakers, takeaways and technologies for our participants, all in one place.”

Now in its 36th year, the DT&L conference will be offered fully online this year for the first time ever, August 3-7. Participants will be able to select from more than 100 sessions focused on online and technology-mediated learning, design, teaching and administration — along with practical strategies and information for incorporating best practices and technologies this fall. Pre- and post-conference workshops offer additional opportunities to develop hands-on skills and earn credentials

Nationally recognized speakers unpack big ideas

Invited speakers, including keynoters Newton Miller and Flower Darby, are primed to lend their expertise and thinking to a range of timely and relevant topics:

    • Brian Beatty, San Francisco State University, and panelists, on the development and applicability of the HyFlex course design model
    • Anna E. Cook, University of Colorado, on mastering accessibility in online course development
    • Stephanie Edel-Malizia, Penn State University, on measuring engaged learning in online and blended courses
    • Danielle Leek, Bunker Hill Community College, on equity-centered digital learning strategies for open education
    • Trey Martindale, Mississippi State University, on financial considerations of online learning and its future in higher education
    • Gloria Y. Niles, University of Hawai’i-West O’ahu, on diversity, equity and inclusion of neurodiverse online learners
    • Karen L. Pedersen, Kansas State University, on being a digital learning leader in times of change
    • Matthew Russell, University of Texas at Austin, on using learning analytics as a framework for faculty development
    • Ray Schroeder, University of Illinois Springfield, on the role of AI in education
    • Katalin Wargo, William & Mary, on small, practical strategies towards human-centered digital learning communities

Networking and bootstrapping

Conference organizers stress that while its fully online this year, DT&L offers numerous opportunities to interact with their fellow attendees, along with the presenters and exhibitors.

“This conference is really about the attendees,” says Thomas J. Tobin, conference program area director. “From follow-up sessions with keynoters to social media contests, we want to make it easy and fun for participants to get answers to their questions, collaborate and have a little fun, too.”

Online registration for the 2020 DT&L conference is open until August 3. Tobin notes that while this is a challenging budget time for colleges and universities, there are grants and professional development dollars to use before they’re gone.

“If you’re worried about time, resources and what’s going to happen in the fall, DT&L offers the perfect opportunity to bootstrap your professional development in distance education.”

For more information or to register for the Distance Teaching & Learning Conference, please visit the website. If you have further questions, please contact dtl@dcs.wisc.edu.