The One Month Countdown…

A month from now people will be arriving in Dublin from all parts of the globe for this year’s ICDE World Conference on Online Learning. The level of excitement is really building here in Dublin, which is evident by the range of activities and updates contained in our latest conference newsletter. Last week, for example, we visited our different conference venues to finalise many of the more creative and innovative features of the event; we briefed Ireland’s Minister for Education and Skills about the World Conference; and we published the first version of the full conference programme and notified presenters of their breakout sessions.


Over 5-days in the first week of November we have a really action packed schedule starting on Sunday with our busy pre-conference programme. We have already had to close registrations for some pre-conference workshops at Dublin City University’s St Patrick’s campus as the level of demand for Sunday’s event unfortunately exceeds our room capacity.


The official Opening Ceremony begins the following morning on Monday 4th November in the award winning Convention Centre Dublin (CCD). Over the next four intensive days conference participants have the opportunity to engage with 8 great plenary speakers along with hundreds of educators from around the world, as they share their work over 11 breakout sessions, with 10 parallel tracks in each session. Our unique “Gasta style” lightning talks coupled with panel discussions and a variety of action labs, fish bowls, symposia and SWOT fora provide a vibrant platform for rich and challenging conversations.

Round_room.jpgAnd, of course, beyond the CCD, often referred to as a greenhouse for ideas, you can continue your conversations at the end of the day with old friends and new colleagues during our guided walking tours ending with “pedagogy in the pub” and at Wednesday evening’s Gala Dinner (Ceiliúradh na Comhdhála) in the famous Round Room at Mansion House. Whatever the location this year’s ICDE World Conference invites difficult and confronting questions as we seek to explore, push boundaries and heighten new understandings in the context of the overarching theme of “transforming lives and societies”.

If you want to learn more about the World Conference, and what’s new, then make sure you read through all the information contained in this week’s newsletter.


World Conference Update: Time to Submit Papers

This is a brief update on planning for this year’s ICDE World Conference on Online Learning that the NIDL is hosting at the iconic and award winning Convention Centre Dublin (CCD) in November. The Organising Committee is pleased to report that paper submissions are already being submitted through the website, with the deadline in March. The 2017 World Conference in Toronto attracted around 1,400 delegates and we are expecting strong interest and a large number of submissions for this year’s Dublin event.

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There are several submission categories including full papers, concise papers, lightening talks and digital posters. Unique digital poster boards will be used for the first time to provide conference delegates with a visually attractive and more interactive experience. IMG_3097.jpgThe conference will also feature a number of symposia and interactive knowledge fora to help discuss a range of contemporary issues, including:

  • Policy and Strategy
  • Open Educational Practices
  • Minority Heritage Language and Culture
  • Alternative Micro and Digital Credentials
  • Refugees, Asylum Seekers and New Immigrants
  • Online Education for Healthy Living and Well-being
  • Industry Partnerships for Continuing Professional Development

Another highlight of the World Conference will be the “Great Debate” which is intended to explore tensions between new and emerging models of online learning and the time-honoured egalitarian roots of open, flexible and distance education. There will also be a rich pre-conference workshop programme on Sunday 3rd November at Dublin City University’s St Patrick’s campus, including a Doctoral Research Symposium and special invitation only Leadership Summit.


To answer questions and enhance the success of paper submissions the local organising team in the NIDL at DCU will be offering several webinars over the next few weeks for prospective authors. More precise information about the webinar dates and times will available in the next week or so. In the meantime when preparing your paper submissions, please keep in mind the overarching conference theme, which is “Transforming Lives and Societies”, and the five big questions we seek to explore along with the related sub themes.

Lastly,  for regular updates remember to follow the conference on Twitter (@WCOL2019) or our Linkedin account where you can also enter our monthly draw for a free tour of the famous Guinness Storehouse during your visit to Dublin in November. More information about other tour opportunities, the exciting social and cultural programme we are planning, and post-conference events and excursions will follow in future updates.