Conference Programme for Learning Innovations and Quality: The Future of Digital Resources Available
LINQ event hosts from the University of Duisburg-Essen in Germany have published the final conference programme for LINQ 2013. The conference in Rome will be supported by a variety of prominent figures vital to the fields of technology-enhanced learning, open educational resources, and vocational education in Europe and worldwide. Furthermore, their presence will further the highlight of LINQ 2013: the launch of ICORE, the International Council for Open Research and Education (www.icore-online.org). Registration for LINQ 2013 is still open for all interested parties until May 8th, but seats are limited and should be reserved as quick as possible.
On May 16th, Learning experts and pioneers such as Dr. Tony Bates of Tony Bates Associates, Dr. Ignasi Labastida, director of the OCW Consortium and Creative Commons, and António Silva Mendes, Director of Education and Vocational Training at the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Education and Culture will take part as keynote speakers at LINQ 2013. They will join the already confirmed Prof. Dr. Rory McGreal and Prof. Dr. Fred Mulder, both UNESCO chairs for Open Educational Resources (OER), as well as Christian-Friedrich Lettmayr, Director of the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training (CEDEFOP). Together these esteemed speakers will establish the greater context of international learning innovations for LINQ 2013.
Complementing the established experts, selected researchers from over 150 submissions will also present new and innovative research papers and projects. Four parallel sessions, divided into three parts each, will provide the structure for presentations. The 1st Parallel Session will consist of invited European speakers as well as two workshops respectively on the co-hosting VOA3R project and the innovative ODS project. The 2nd Parallel Session will consist of the selected papers from the LINQ 2013 call. These papers in turn fit into three thematic sections: “Digital Resources & Online Repositories”, “TEL for Schools, Universities, & Lifelong Learning”, and “Innovations & Future Trends in LET”. In addition, the 3rd and 4th Parallel Sessions will be dedicated to the presentations of selected European and international projects, thematically divided into “Quality Management: Evaluation, Standards & Certification”, “Open Access & Open Educational Resources: Policies, Tools and Content”, and “New Knowledge Networks – Ideas & Innovation for LLL” on the one hand, and “VET, New Skills & Quality”, “Teachers in Focus: Competence & Skill Development”, and “Innovation in TEL” on the other. The final conference programme is available on the LINQ 2013 conference website at www.learning-innovations.eu/2013/programme.
Registration for LINQ 2013 is still available for all interested groups until May 8th – only a few seats remain, so please register as soon as possible to ensure your chance to participate. Further information on registration is available at the conference website at www.learning-innovations.eu/registration. For the latest updates on LINQ and related initiatives, follow @LINQ_Conference on Twitter and like www.facebook.com/LINQConference on Facebook.
Essen, April 2013 - To discuss this matter, the University of Duisburg-Essen invites educators and researchers to a European conference on May 16 and 17, 2013. Some main points of dialogue will include defining quality in learning and innovations in learning resources.
Recently Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) have shaken up the blogosphere and media reports on higher education. These courses make use of open digital resources for learning and have attracted hundreds of thousands of online learners at no cost. A digital resource for learning can be a written text, pictures, slides, videos, a 3-D simulation or a website combining all of them into ready-made curricula including tools for (self-)assessment for educators or learners. More and more digital resources with open licenses facilitate educators and learners in editing, improving, and adapting to different learning situations inside or outside of the classroom and in turn share their own work with the online community. These open digital resources provide the foundation for a borderless exchange of teaching and learning methods in many different fields. But a potential conflict exists between open learning resources and the quality of those resources. Restrictions on the certification of the creators of such content or the access to learning materials through paywalls have to some degree defended the quality of those resources in the past. How can creators ensure that their digital resources meet an appropriate level of quality and how can users be certain that said resources are worth their time?
The LINQ conference will bring together current initiatives from all areas of education - schooling, adult learning, informal and on-the-job learning - to demonstrate their online resources and methods of quality development and thereby address this potential conflict. An example of such an initiative is VOA3R (Virtual Open Access Agriculture and Aquaculture Repository), a European research project consortium of a variety universities and research centres. This group is building a hub for resources in agriculture and aqua-science through a social network in which researchers can share, comment and rate content. Through the VOA3R platform advances are being made in the sharing, reciprocal reviewing, and rating of learning innovations in the aforementioned fields, thereby addressing the important aspect of learning quality which should accompany learning development. These advances have proven of great interest to the Global Headquarter of United Nations' organization Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) - LINQ conference host and supporter of the VOA3R project.
In Rome, discussions will deal with the following questions:
· How can the quality of resources be improved and what does “quality” actually mean for teachers, learners and institutions?
· Are teachers and educational institutions ready to make use of the wealth of resources and how do they find the “right” thing?
· Will the future of digital resources be determined by metadata, i.e. the data about data, feeding databases and search engines?
· What must be done to ensure that we can still access valuable resources in 15 years from now (think about your files from 1998)?
· Do more easy-to-find resources lead to better learning?
Especially but not exclusively for those who do not plan to travel to Rome in May, the University of Duisburg-Essen is inviting interested parties to exchange views on the future of digital resources on Facebook: www.facebook.com/LINQConference. Two conference fee waivers will be given away to Facebook-Followers.
The 2nd European Conference on "Learning Innovations and Quality" (LINQ 2013) will take place at the Global Headquarters of the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) in Rome, Italy, on 16-17 May 2013.
The Global Headquarters of the FAO stands near the impressive Circus Maximus, the first and largest stadium in the Roman Empire, and its expansive facilities will provide ample space to the participants of LINQ 2013. Furthermore, the FAO’s development of global standards in food and agriculture-related policies (including training and education) makes it an ideal venue for LINQ 2013.
This year's LINQ 2013 has "Innovations and Quality: The Future of Digital Resources" as its motto, and addresses and invites experts who are active in the field of Innovations and Quality in Lifelong Learning (LLL).
The LINQ 2013 conference fee will remain reduced at the early-bird rate of 90€ until the 31st of March 2013, after which it will rise to 150€. For further information about conference fees, requirements, and other details about LINQ 2013, please visit the conference website.
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