Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Great Keynotes at D2L FUSION

I thought all three keynote speakers were fabulous. Each very different from the others and with different messages to convey in different ways. Nancy White just finished about 45 minutes ago. Nancy is very engaging, very animated on stage, and you get a sense that she clearly has the personality to develop a sense of community among distributed learners, which was a central part of her presentation and about her daily work in the field. She was a great contrast to the other speakers and has been an important contributor to the conference with her attendance throughout the three days. (Her presentation wiki.)

Will Richardson on Tuesday has a powerful message that is not always well received by educators. Will's appearance was my special request as conference planning committee co-chair, and I think he delivers every time at the plate. There are plenty of educators who don't like to be told that they are going 10 miles per hour in a 100 mph world .... but those people tend to be part of the problem and not part of the solution. See, now you have a reason to not like me as well. The majority thought he was great, and the others had various reasons for not thinking he was great. Best part of all that is that he really started a lot of conversations about change in education, which I believe was his intent in the first place. Mission accomplished! Thanks Will, A++ in my book, and I'm a tough grader. (His presentation wiki.)

Ruth Clark delivered the opening keynote Monday morning. I commented to her afterwards that she has an excellent way of taking some rather complex research results and stripping them down to make it all very understandable for those who are not easily or usually immersed in academic research. The heavy-duty researchers in the crowd were probably not very impressed, but the other 90% of the audience learned a great deal about what works and what doesn't work in electronic content delivery - with a special attention given to not creating cognitive overload. Once again, I thought she was right on the money for most of the people in attendance.
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1 comment:

Nancy White said...

Barry, that is one wacky picture of me! Oi vey!