Response, Reflection and Round Table
Fabrizio Cardinali is one of Europe’s leading e-learning experts and author of numerous papers in international journals. He is Chair of the European eLearning Industry Group (ELIG), a group which encompasses all major European Union (EU) stakeholders in the learning industry innovation cycle. The European Union faces many of the same challenges that we are accustomed to in the United States. In his keynote, titled “Innovating E-Learning for the Knowledge Society: Global Challenges, Threats and Opportunities,” he will offer a “big picture” of the future of learning and how the EU is approaching educational strategies in dealing with globalization and a knowledge-based economy. He will specifically discuss new trends in digital learning resources from online content to embedded assessment and new delivery models through online learning distribution systems.

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Welcome - Susan Patrick
  • NACOL expanding internationally
  • now INACOL (International North American Council for Online Learning)
  • International perspectives online learning
  • Seen as a solution and growing greatly in the following
    • Turkey
    • China
    • India
  • Internet access
    • US falling behind other countries in proliferation of Internet access - especially wireless (WiMax)
  • US Spending
    • $9969 per student annually (more than any country except Switzerland)
    • US not going slower, other countries moving faster
    • Dropout rate at 50% nationally
    • 15% of all high schools produce 50% of the dropouts nationally

Keynote - Fabrizio Cardinali (Chair European Elearning Industry Group - ELIG)
  • European perspectives for online learning
  • Textbooks (even in Europe) still driving the education industry
  • Market-techture
  • 2nd generation eLearning needs to be better than traditional brick and mortar institutions
    • Make content better and more engaging
    • Leverage technology to improve content
    • Take advantage of mobile device

A. In the next ten years….
- Learning will become modular based, and personalized.
- There will be a differentiation of instruction based on student needs and prior knowledge. -A massive development and change in assessment approaches.
-All classes will have an online component for communication and specialization.
-Online courses will all be media rich with attention given to the socialization needs for students
-Teacher colleges need to make online teaching part of the normal program.
-State virtual schools need to expand their missions to include developing the online teaching capabilities of teachers within their states by sharing their expertise and contributing content to be taught by local teachers.
-States need to recognize the challenge and respond with leadership and enabling policies
-Teachers need to look for opportunities in the online world instead of being frightened of the changes.
-Learning will be mobile, interactive
-Students will be contributors not just receivers of information
Competition for students will exist because there will be many successful virtual education models and providers to choose from. Adaptive teaching systems will allow differentiated and customized learning for students – Personal Learning Profiles for all (think of it as IEPs for everyone). Globalization will happen, in that social/school networking will include many opportunities for cross-border collaboration, with unpredictable effect.

-Instruction will become more individualized and mobile
-Content and other information will be shared more across states and continents
-Packaged courses will be developed to help start online learning
-Smaller newer companies will usher in change and new technologies

This is probably unimaginable, but trending towards very personalized instruction based on ubiquitous mobile technology and smarter "phones"
- More blended instruction

B. To Get there we need to…

PD for Online teacher to develop new approaches to online teaching.
Redefine policy and budget to remove barriers to innovation.
Use business models to develop innovative nimble organizations.
Deal with the barriers - state department of education, school boards, policies
Interoperability standards for technical/technology/delivery systems.
More explicit description of content standards so learning adaptation can be certain to be compatible with local
-Proper teacher training is essential, the trainers of these teachers will not be from the traditional sect
-Infrastructure and implementation models for technologies must be developed to ensure proper buy-in and successful use of the programs
-Constant learning and development for teachers
-Create a system that ensures community understanding of online learning is in place
- Develop more open-minded faculty and government individuals - preferably through hearts-and-minds approaches, but possibly waiting for retirement wave
- Overcome need for educators to be technical experts as well as content and pedagogy experts

C. Resources that will get us there…
-Business Partnerships
-Development of future teachers.
-Educate legislatures.
-Need a structure outside of the current structure
-Forge public and private partnerships
-Organizations like NACOL, will help to foster communication between the online learning and the community
-National partnerships will also help to create communication and understanding with the community
-Setting up government programs and relationships to foster community understanding of online learning
- support material for parents as learning coaches
- e-texts
- time for teachers to make shift from classroom to online pedagogy

D. Challenges and Solutions…
-Challenge: Closed minded Obstruction by authorities; Solution: Use other state success stories to make your case.
Need to change policy to free revenue streams to support progress – does this mean vouchers or other ways to allow choice and competition?
-These moves will face challenges from costs, but if the current spending was shifted from programs that are inefficient to other areas for creating understanding and providing proper training
- challenge: access to content. solutions: 1) every publisher provides e-versions of approved/required texts 2) friendlier copyright provisions to fine art source material for classes such as music

E. Increasing Global Learning Opportunities…
-Create Global Collaborative Partnerships with International Educational institutions. Sharing course and students and building relationships and skills
-Opportunities for students and teachers to experience world class education.

I recently attended the VSS in Phoenix, AZ from October 26-28. I am posting the discussions from our roundtable on Monday after the keynote
address presented by Fabrizio Cardinali.

We talked about the increase in use of mobile devices in communications and its impact on education.
The need for communication around the globe concerning what is happening in virtual learning is vital to students and teachers.
Sharing what we learned at the VSS with others in education is important.
It is quite a challenge that teachers are usually licensed in one state and there is a problem with reciprocity.
The infrastructure of our education system in the US needs to change.

Denise Foures-Aalbu - University of Wisconsin-Madison Distance Education Certificate Program 2008
Terry Cowan - K12 Virginia
Melody Cherry - Southeast Kansas Education Service Center, Marketing Specialist