2019 World Conference on Online Learning: The Countdown has Started…

The 28th ICDE World Conference on Online Learning in Dublin, Ireland is now less than a year away and the team in National Institute for Digital Learning (NIDL) at Dublin City University (DCU) has been busy over recent weeks preparing for the conference. The last conference in 2017 in Toronto attracted around 1,400 delegates and this year’s Organising Committee promise a truly unique Irish experience along with an exciting and engaging conference programme.

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The call for papers went out on Monday 19th November and in the context of the conference theme of “Transforming Lives and Societies” a range of opportunities will be available for participants to discuss many of the contemporary issues facing today’s educators. There will be a variety of invited symposia and pre-conference workshops along with a special event for doctoral students but also plenty of time for delegates to mix socially and enjoy the sights and delights of Dublin. Note the conference key dates and watch out over the next few months for further news and updates, including how to enter our special monthly draw to win tickets to visit the iconic Guinness Storehouse during your stay in Dublin. You may also wish to follow the World Conference twitter handle:

@WCOL2019

In the meantime you view a brief video below where members of the local organising team from DCU mark the one-year milestone before researchers, policy-makers institutional leaders and educational professionals from around the world gather in Dublin in November 2019.

Welcome to New Head of Open Education Unit – Professor Grainne Conole

Last week Professor Grainne Conole formally commenced her position at Dublin City University (DCU) as Head of the Open Education Unit. The wider NIDL team marked the occasion with an informal welcome on the first morning, and already Grainne is busy meeting DCU staff and making a valuable contribution to preparations for the start of the new academic year.

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Professor Conole is known throughout the world for her expertise in learning design and open models of education. Her appointment to the National Institute for Digital Learning (NIDL) at DCU is further evidence of our commitment to exploring and harnessing the educational potential of flexible models of life-long learning through our DCU Connected platform.

Grainne 3.jpgIn welcoming Grainne to the University, Professor Mark Brown, NIDL Director noted that DCU has a proud history of innovation in distance education and the number of students choosing to study online through DCU Connected continues to grow each year. He went on to say that ‘Professor Conole’s appointment will help DCU further develop our capacity and expand our range of online course offerings to meet increasing demand for open flexible study pathways’.

Professor Conole told NIDL staff that, ‘She is excited about her new position as DCU has a growing international reputation for its research and innovative development work in the area of Digital Learning’. Grainne noted DCU’s success in winning the rights to host next year’s ICDE World Conference on Online Learning and expressed her excitement about joining the NIDL’s organising team to offer a truly impactful and memorable international event.

Professor Conole brings considerable experience to her new role in the Open Education Unit, with over 1000 research outputs, including a seminal Springer book on ‘Designing for Learning in an Open World’. She serves on several international journal editorial boards and is a Teaching Fellow of the UK HEA (now Advance HE) and Fellow of both the European Distance and e-Learning Network (EDEN) and Australasian Society for Computers in Learning in Tertiary Education (ASCILITE).

Finally, during her welcome to DCU, Grainne reminded everyone that she was born in Ireland and has been associated with the NIDL since it was first established. In her own words, Grainne spoke of ‘how delighted she is to be joining such a great team’ and ‘is really looking forward to working with NIDL colleagues in helping to shape the future of education in Ireland, and beyond’.