Virtual School Meanderings

June 24, 2017

[AECT] New Special Interest Group: Learner Engagement

Also from Thursday’s inbox…

New AECT Special Interest Group, Learner Engagement
Contact Kay K. Seo,, The Learner Engagement SIG

Learner Engagement

Special Interest Group

Today’s rapid digital and technological advancements have presented new opportunities and challenges in facilitating learner engagement. For example, the popularity of social networking has not only accelerated communication but also changed the way learners can interact. The highly accessible, multimedia-based, instant connections have allowed for more meaningful learning environments via synchronous chat, webinars, video conferencing, podcasting, and so on. At the same time, they have posed significant challenges for institutions to support, designers to assist, and instructors to implement.

AECT’s newest special interest group (SIG), The Learner Engagement SIG, seeks to stimulate open, vibrant dialogue about the evolution of learner engagement and contribute to shaping the direction of effective pedagogy and instructional design.

The SIG covers cases, research, strategies, and tools concerning all dimensions of learner engagement including learner-to-learner, learner-to-instructor, and learner-to-content interactions. The degree of attention and interest that students show in the learning process is a critical consideration for maximizing instructional outcomes and building

powerful experiences for them. Aiming at promoting deep understanding of learning deep understanding of learning and engaging in the design and development of instructional interventions, the SIG seeks to raise awareness of the new implications technology has on learner engagement and foster innovative instructional strategies to increase learner engagement. The Learner Engagement SIG will promote research and discussions through a variety of media such as Facebook and Twitter. The social media aspect of the SIG is designed to bring together AECT members interested in both learning more about learner engagement and sharing research, strategies, and experiences, and allow them to participate in the inquiry involved with instructional design, pedagogical strategies, changing technologies, and ways to support the implementation and evaluation of different forms of learner engagement. The SIG will be both an active and interactive space, geared toward bringing together researchers and practitioners in a common area to ask and answer questions that will inform the study and application of strategies which address learner engagement.

The SIG will also add a new dimension to instructional design and how technology and pedagogical strategies impact learning. Through a shared interest in education and technology, members of the SIG will grow their understanding of the interplay between pedagogy and learner engagement and develop concepts about how that relationship can be better understood and improved in a range of contexts. Members of the SIG will have the opportunity to learn and share in a professional and enhanced environment that can lead to enriched practices and unique research opportunities.

For more information about The Learner Engagement SIG, please contact Kay K. Seo, PhD, University of Cincinnati (email:

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