OLC Announces Keynoters, Best-in-Track Sessions and Conference Highlights for OLC Accelerate 2018

OLC Accelerate 2018 (Nov. 14-16, Orlando) will gather thousands of online learning researchers, practitioners and EdTech innovators from around the world to share and discover effective practices and evaluate technologies for teaching and learning online.

NEWBURYPORT, Mass. (Sept. 25, 2018) — The Online Learning Consortium (OLC) anticipates nearly 2,000 online learning leaders from around the world will gather in Orlando, Florida, Nov. 14-16, for OLC Accelerate 2018 (#OLCAccelerate). In its 24th year, OLC’s annual international conference is one of the largest and longest-standing conferences in online and digital teaching and learning.

“OLC Accelerate is so much more than a conference,” said Executive Conference Chair Kathleen Ives, CEO and Executive Director of the Online Learning Consortium. “It’s a three-day experience designed to inspire and facilitate learning and collaboration among online learning leaders from around the world. Our conference co-chairs Frank Tomsic of the American Hospital Association and Sharon Goldstein of Berkeley College have led our incredible team of conference volunteers in creating an event that advances our tradition of excellence while integrating new and exciting features, filled with quality content, creative venues and engaging networking opportunities.” 

“We are truly excited about new elements at OLC Accelerate that will enhance the overall attendee experience, including initiatives in diversity and inclusion focused on accessibility, Presenter Services, and an improved virtual attendee experience through OLC Live,” added Executive Conference Chair Patsy Moskal, Ed.D., Associate Director, Research Initiative for Teaching Effectiveness, University of Central Florida.

Announcing Best-in-Track Sessions at OLC Accelerate 2018

OLC Accelerate offers the ideal setting for sharing innovative research and practice across the online and blended learning community — encompassing education, leadership, instructional design, technology innovation, user experience (UX) and beyond. These focus areas are represented in the Best-in-Track sessions announced today:

  • App Smackdown! A Battle Royale of Education Technology (Track: Innovations, Tools and Technologies) – Presenters: Janet Smith, Matthew Romanoski and Angela Gunder, University of Arizona; and Cathy Russell, University of Arizona and Lone Star College
  • What Do You Really Need to Offer High Quality Online Learning: A Brainstorming Session (Track: Leadership and Institutional Strategies) – Presenters: Tamara Powell, Deborah Mixson-Brookshire and Julie Moore, Kennesaw State University
  • Creating Vibrant Online Student Support Services (Track: Learner Services and Support) – Presenters: Victoria Brown, Florida Atlantic University; and Josh Strigle, College of Central Florida
  • What’s in Your Tool Box? Tools to Optimize Social Presence and Student Engagement in an eLearning Environment (Track: Learning Effectiveness) – Presenters: Lori Kupczynski, University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences – Kingsville; Angela Gibson, Colorado State University – Global Campus;and Shannon Groff, Florida State College at Jacksonville
  • Active Learning Across Modalities: A Model for Interdisciplinary Faculty Development (Track: Professional Development and Support) – Presenters: Corinne Stull, Aimee deNoyelles and James Paradiso, University of Central Florida
  • Measuring Online Graduate Student Connectedness and Engagement Activities that Impact Completion Rates (Track: Research) – Presenters: Tawnya Means, University of Nebraska-Lincoln – College of Business; Meridith Bergeron, Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady University; and Sarah Fornero, Adler University

“We congratulate our Best-in-Track presenters and thank them for sharing their inventive approaches to developing quality online learning experiences with attendees of OLC Accelerate 2018,” said OLC’s Ives.  

Top Speakers, Important Topics, Hands-On Experiences

Headlining the speaker lineup for OLC Accelerate are keynoters:

  • Dr. Jane McGonigal, world-renowned game designer, inventor of SuperBetter and author of the New York Times bestseller, “Reality is Broken”
  • Dr. Jean Twenge, Professor of Psychology at San Diego State University and author of more than 140 scientific publications and books

Additional conference highlights include:

  • “Global Quality Summit,” featuring speakers from institutions around the world, who will discuss how quality in digital learning is addressed in their region
  • Inaugural “Research Summit,” during which leaders in the the field of digital learning research will discuss empirical and evidence-based research, as well as provide insights on future areas of research interest
  • 500-plus sessions on a wide range of topics and special interest areas, including edtech, proctoring, accessibility, gamification, K-12, open educational resources, and more.
  • Exclusive opportunities for digital learning leaders to confer on top leadership issues: OLC Leadership Network Event, a half-day collaborative program, modeled after the popular OLC Collaborate events; and IELOL Master Class, open to alumni and 2018 participants of OLC’s Institute for Emerging Leadership in Online Learning
  • Exhibit hall with 80-plus brands, entrepreneurs and innovators providing access to the latest education solutions
  • Technology Test Kitchen, an exploratory installation run by “chefs” who guide attendees through hands-on exercises focused on practical applications of technology to solve unique pedagogical challenges

Visit the OLC Accelerate website for all conference details, including online registration and speaker and program updates.

About Online Learning Consortium

The Online Learning Consortium (OLC) is a collaborative community of higher education leaders and innovators, dedicated to advancing quality digital teaching and learning experiences designed to reach and engage the modern learner – anyone, anywhere, anytime. OLC inspires innovation and quality through an extensive set of resources, including, best-practice publications, quality benchmarking, leading-edge instruction, community-driven conferences, practitioner-based and empirical research and expert guidance. The growing OLC community includes faculty members, administrators, trainers, instructional designers, and other learning professionals, as well as educational institutions, professional societies and corporate enterprises. Visit http://onlinelearningconsortium.org for more information.