The PlugIN Experience and OLC Innovate Sandbox

The PlugIN Lounge acts as the physical hub for an expanded OLC Innovate 2016 virtual conference experience that aims to be inclusive, integrative, and experiential for virtual and physical conference participants alike. The PlugIN Lounge features the following learning opportunities:

  • Virtual Help Desk: In-person assistance is available for those who are having technical difficulties or would like “insider” tips about getting started on popular digital platforms such as Twitter and Instagram. Online, sharable “how-to” resources will be available to scaffold your learning and take back to your students and colleagues.
  • Learning Resource Center: Curious about integrating social media and participatory cultures in your courses, but unsure of how to start? The Learning Resource Center offers a self-guided tour through some building blocks of emerging digital pedagogies, including: crowdsourcing and curation; backchannel communication; self-publishing and digital composition (“blogging”); and multimodal expressions online (“digital makes”). Each center provides access to sharable online resources and examples of how these highly engaging, active learning concepts can be integrated into a variety of learning experience designs.
  • Emerging Ideas Sessions: These brief one-on-one presentations are designed to add new members and energy to your current personal learning networks. Designed to be highly interactive for on-site participants, Emerging Ideas Sessions provide opportunities for soliciting feedback, forming collaborative relationships, and sparking new ideas.
  • Networked Participatory Fun Hub: Interspersed between Emerging Idea Sessions, the PlugIN Lounge acts as a meeting post for conference attendees interested in exploring some of the more powerful learning activities found in networked participatory cultures. Scheduled photo safaris are part of the PlugIN digital experience programming but will begin in the Innovation Lab (Exhibit Hall); photo safaris help participants process what they are learning (e.g. what is innovation?) by providing them with opportunities to interact with their environments in loosely-structured, social, informal, and creative street photography. The fun hub schedule (and suggestions for starting your own fun, should you need them) can be found at the Virtual Help Desk and in the Learning Resource Center.
  • Virtually Connecting: Back by popular demand, Virtually Connecting ( will be hosting Google Hangout On Air sessions broadcasts to join the between physical on-site participants and virtual conference attendees together. These Virtually Connecting events help to facilitate those valuable “hallway” conversations we all love but that virtual attendees often miss. Come hangout with virtual attendees to answer questions and discuss common conference themes, identifiable trends, and your reactions to key conference sessions. The Virtually Connecting schedule will be available at the Virtual Help Desk.