Virtual School Meanderings

December 17, 2010

Proposals Due Today: 2011 USDLA 4th Annual Conference, May 1-4, 2011

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National Distance Learning Week–

CALL FOR PROPOSALS

2011 USDLA 4th Annual Conference

Due Today – December 17, 2010!

Click Here Now to Submit!

Distance Learning Leading the Way

May 1-4, 2011
The Hilton at the Ball Park, St. Louis, MO

CALL FOR PROPOSALS
Submission Deadline:  December 17, 2010

The United States Distance Learning Association (USDLA) is pleased to announce the 2011 Annual Conference Call for Proposals. The proposals are now being accepted based on the conference theme, “Distance Learning Leading the Way.” We invite your proposals and participation in this exciting and important event.  There is also a unique opportunity this year to present your session in our virtual classroom setting, which means your session will be viewed by face-to-face attendees as well as those attendees joining us virtually. You will be able to note an interest in the call for proposal link below.

There are several ways to participate;
·    Concurrent information sessions provide an opportunity for you to give an interactive presentation in one or more of the conference topic areas. Conference attendees expect sessions to provide practical advice and the sharing of experiences. The committee seeks high quality, thought-provoking and interactive sessions not lecture format. Co-presenters are encouraged.
·    Poster sessions allow presenters to prepare a standing table-top poster that describes a project, process, research or other activity. During the reception before the Awards Dinner on Tuesday evening, conference participants will visit with poster session presenters for information, dialogue and networking.
·    Small panels are also encouraged, particularly those that address a conference topic from several points of view.

We recommend that proposals be specific about what will make your presentation valuable to attendees. Any proposal that is perceived to be a “sales pitch” will not be considered. Your proposal should be focused on innovative issues, working solutions and should address the conference theme.  All presenters are expected to register for the full conference.

Conference Tracks
You are invited to submit proposals that address any of the conference topics outlined below. Please remember to incorporate the overall conference theme when possible.

Track 1: Leading Distance Learning in the 21st Century
Track 1 focuses on the role that distance education should play in strategic initiatives while also addressing issues related to management and administration challenges.  The support of internal and external stakeholders should be examined. These sessions should highlight diverse, emerging and efficient strategies, including their global use in corporate, educational, healthcare, government and military organizations. For example, using distance education as it relates to: maximizing resources, developing policies, standards, strategic planning, communication alternatives, distance learning administrative requirements, etc.

Track 2: Research and Evaluation Processes
Track 2 focuses on sharing the latest research and validated innovations that are coming out of corporate, education, healthcare, government and military entities as it relates to distance learning.   These presentations showcase the theoretical, methodological, empirical, or quality assurance aspects of distance learning and the use of technology to enhance distance learning.

Track 3: Professional Development
Track 3 focuses on the efficient development, training, technology and delivery opportunities available to distance learning professionals to obtain expertise in their field. Speakers should focus their presentation on the following types of questions: How does your organization train your instructors to become distance learning facilitators? What types of professional development opportunities are available to support instructors once they have begun training? How do you introduce, support and sustain 21st century skills to our future leaders in distance learning?  How are distance learning technologies (online, videoconferencing, synchronous/asynchronous, etc.) utilized to deliver professional development?

Track 4: Best and Promising Practices in Distance Teaching and Learning
Track 4 focuses on validated practices and procedures, including globally, being used throughout K-12, Higher Education (private & public), military, healthcare, government and corporate training/education entities, giving special attention to various approaches to teaching students. This should look at best practices and practical techniques that instructors of all areas can implement within their teaching and training.

Track 5: Technology: Changes and Challenges
Track 5 promotes the exchange of information among trainers/educators throughout K-12, Higher Education (private & public), military, healthcare, government, and corporate entities that explores technology in advancing the practices and procedures of distance learning.

Types of Sessions
·    Concurrent Sessions
·    Poster Sessions
·    Panel Sessions

Equipment
The conference will provide a standard set up (LCD data/video projector and screen). If you must have Internet access, please state that clearly in your proposal. You will need to provide your own laptop computer.

Preparing Your Proposal
All Conference proposals should be submitted using the online submission form by clicking on the following link: http://www.conconnect.net/rfp.aspx?yr=2011&id=001

For your information, the automated proposal submission system will ask you for the following information:

Include:
1.    Contact Information: the name and full contact information for the lead presenter and any co-presenters
2.    Session Title:  a succinct, but descriptive title of no more than ten words
3.    Format:  concurrent, poster, or panel
4.    Abstract:  50-word (or less) description of the session
5.    Content:  a clear summary of learning objectives and session content in 300-500 words
6.    Conference Topic(s):  session can cover more than one topic
7.    Audience Focus by Constituency:  USDLA serves multiple constituencies, including K-12, higher education, corporate, government, military, telehealth, and international. Please tell us who would benefit from your session (may be more than one group).
8.    Audiovisual:  needs that are beyond the standard setup of projector and screen. If you need Internet access for your session, you must include that information in your proposal. We cannot accommodate requests made during the conference.
9.    Virtual Session/ Live Feed: opportunity to offer your session in a virtual classroom with live feed from St. Louis.

Review Criteria
Conference participants will expect well-delivered presentations containing quality information that is of practical value to their day-to-day professional lives. Members of the USDLA 2011 Conference Program Committee will review each proposal. Reviewers will look for clear descriptions. Considerable weight will be given to proposals that specify session learning objectives and clearly describe why the content will be valuable to attendees.

Specifically, reviewers will look for the following:
·    Relevance to the conference theme
·    Quality of the presentation:  substance, clarity, organization
·    Evidence of innovation and effective practice
·    Audience appeal and opportunity for discussion

Status of Proposals and Notification
The 2011 Program Committee will review proposals and you will be contacted about the status of your proposal by January 15, 2011. If your proposal is accepted, the lead presenter will receive an email containing information relevant to your presentation. Lead presenters are responsible for forwarding all information to their co-presenters.  Presenters are eligible for the Early Bird registration rate (even after the close of Early Bird registration).

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About United States Distance Learning Association (USDLA)
The United States Distance Learning Association (USDLA) is a non-profit association formed in 1987 and is located in Boston, Massachusetts. The association reaches 20,000 people globally with sponsors and members operating in and influencing 46% of the $913 billion dollar U.S. education and training market. USDLA promotes the development and application of distance learning for education and training and serves the needs of the distance learning community by providing advocacy, information, networking and opportunity. Distance learning and training constituencies served include pre-k-12 education, higher and continuing education, home schooling as well as business, corporate, military, government and telehealth markets. The USDLA trademarked logo is the recognized worldwide symbol of dedicated professionals committed to the distance learning industry. http://www.usdla.org  

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