Blended Learning Summit - Part 3: Optimizing Blended Programming and Course Offerings: Leadership Perspectives

Concurrent Session 8
Blended

Brief Abstract

Join us for a panel discussion with college leaders as they share their challenges, successes, and lessons learned in leveraging blended learning opportunities in an uncertain pandemic world and beyond. 

 

Presenters

Dr. Tawnya Means is the Assistant Dean for Educational Innovation and Chief Learning Officer in the Gies College of Business at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Prior to this role, Tawnya served as the Assistant Dean and Director of the Teaching and Learning Center for the College of Business at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and the Director of the Teaching and Learning Center at the Warrington College of Business at the University of Florida, leading teaching and learning support and providing faculty development programs and resources for instructional innovation and adoption of pedagogical best practices. With 20 years of experience in higher education, course design, and educational consulting, Tawnya has also taught courses in entrepreneurship, strategy, technology, and leadership in remote teams. Dr. Means received her B.S. in Education, M.S. in Educational Technology, and Ph.D. in Information Science and Learning Technologies with an emphasis on learning systems design, all from the University of Missouri. She completed the AACSB Post-doctoral bridge program in Management and Entrepreneurship at the University of Florida. Her research interests are in online and blended learning, active learning, learning space design, technology for teaching, access to digital learning resources, and faculty preparation to teach. She has long been a leader in campus initiatives and committees and actively presents at conferences and other institutions and organizations on technology-enhanced learning.
A popular speaker and facilitator, Dr. Kelvin Thompson regularly addresses groups throughout the US on topics related to online/blended learning and educational technology while he serves as the Executive Director of the University of Central Florida's (UCF) Center for Distributed Learning (http://cdl.ucf.edu) with a faculty appointment as a graduate faculty scholar in UCF's College of Education & Human Performance. Dr. Thompson has collaborated on the design of hundreds of online and blended courses over the past twenty years and is active in the online education community. Kelvin developed the BlendKit Course open courseware (http://bit.ly/blendkit) as part of UCF's Blended Learning Toolkit, and he also co-hosts TOPcast: The Teaching Online Podcast available on iTunes and at http://topcast.online.ucf.edu. His personal research interests center around how interaction affects learner engagement, and information on his Online Course Criticism qualitative evaluation model for facilitating the scholarship of teaching and learning in online and blended environments is available online (http://onlinecoursecriticism.com). Kelvin Thompson holds an EdD in curriculum and instruction and an MA in instructional systems technology from UCF and a Bachelor of Music Education degree from The Florida State University. Curriculum vitae is available online at http://bit.ly/kelvin_cv.
Cheryl Fulghum oversees the department of Instructional Design and Online Learning at Haywood Community College in western North Carolina. In this role, she is responsible for instructional design through faculty development, online course design, emerging technologies research, accessibility compliance, and the administrations of several learning platforms. She describes her main role as faculty cheerleader, empowering faculty to become 21st century teachers despite self-identified low-tech skills and fear of the unknown. Prior to her work in the online learning field, she served as full-time faculty in the commercial arts and worked as project manager and media content creator for Shadowbox Design, an educational technology company specializing in online ancillaries for higher education textbook publishers. She has degrees in Broadcast Communications, Journalism, and Educational Media: Curriculum and Instruction.
Michael Torrence, Ph.D. serves as the President of Motlow State Community College. The college has campuses in Smyrna, Tullahoma, McMinnville and Fayetteville, Tennessee. President Torrence has spent his career embracing the use of technological literacy as a platform to increase student engagement and success. He has served in roles in support of online, accelerated, and mode neutral learning, engaged with TNeCampus and as a Tennessee Board of Regents statewide team leader for the integration of Emerging Technology and Mobilization in the areas of Gaming, VR, AR, and MR into teaching and learning. He has trained faculty, students, executives, and community members and developed immersive curriculum focused on STEAMB (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art/Aviation, Mathematics, and Business) for all grade levels and utilized these platforms teaching undergraduate and graduate students in his own classes where VR and entrepreneurship have become a norm. Currently, through researching and developing a platform for OER through support of Hewlett-Packard and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, he hope to utilize the findings to support workforce development and student success. He earned a doctor of philosophy degree, with a major in exceptional learning, at Tennessee Tech University, and master of arts and bachelor of arts degrees at South Dakota State University, both with a major in English. President Torrence, a veteran, served in the U.S. Air Force.

Extended Abstract

As college leaders continue to respond to the varying nature of the COVID-19 pandemic and future opportunities for their college’s academic portfolio, finding the right mix of online and in-person experiences to meet student demand, faculty readiness, institutional capability, and regional needs prove to be a strategic challenge.  

Blended learning opportunities continue to evolve.  There is no “one size fits all” model for blended, with multiple variations depending on school, faculty, program, student needs, among other differences. Further, the drivers for blended learning can put different pressures on college leaders to identify a blended strategy, communicate the vision, set expectations, and measure overall success of blended opportunities. 

This session’s moderated panel discussion will include multiple highlights on how leaders have approached the blended learning landscape for their institution, including lessons learned, challenges ahead, and hopes for their blended future.