Conference Highlights

Best Paper Awards


 Thomas Tobin, Linda Wagner, and the team of George Wentworth and Heather Gibbons were presented with Best Paper Awards.


Fun Stuff


And the main reason I came here was to win the scavenger hunt . . .


Five extra points for juggling!


It PAYS to never clean out your purse!


Maybe if we don't look at her she won't take our picture.


There were green alligators and long-necked geese . . .


What happened to our Saturday Night Fever music?


Hey, I'll trade you some of my turnip greens for a bite of your peach cobbler.


I haven't had this much fun on a bus since high school!




Hey, we can't sing but we sure do look good!


Dad, can we come back here next year?

Summary of Roundtable Discussions

 New Technologies  Faculty Support Challenges
Best New Technology: Video Streaming Too many students in online course: Establish caps, train higher administrators so they can appreciate burden, train instructors to bound discussions in large classes, hire additional instructors or TAs, reorganize course to allow for different instructional methods (group work), automate tasks such as test grading.
Problems with video streaming: Connectivity/access of user, User connection speed , "Bells and whistles" are not always user friendly, Clips should be no longer than a few minutes Faculty demonstrate lack of copyright knowledge: Train, create website, publish tips in newsletter, stay current, invite expert to workshop, periodically assess faculty knowledge, have copyright oversight committee to review materials, use online tools to detect plagiariam, develop written guidelines on how to credit sources, insist that guidelines be adhered to.
DL Uses of Wireless Technology: personal digital assistants. Attendees from National Science Center broadcasted live tour of center to sites in Georgia and Michigan. Faculty complain about lack of rewards: Extra pay, comp time, time for staff development, reduce other work, recognition awards, credit in terms of promotion and tenure, provide assistants, provide technology, education administrators, compare systems at other institutions.
WebCT vs. Blackboard: WebCt more widespread, has multiple course tools, and exceptional support (online tutorials and help functions). Colleague from Eastern Illinois University suggested site for full comparison. Online faculty lack basic computer skills: Develop mentoring program, one-on-one training, assess before hiring, free computer classes, self-evaluation tool, provide student assistance, incentives for demonstrating knowledge, insist that knowledge be maintained (contractual), have "Technology Tuesdays."
How much should DL administrators know about technology? Enough to make informed decisions, to be able to converse with faculty and enable faculty buy-in. Should consider outcomes and goals when considering tech purchases.  Online students complain faculty doesn't interact enough: Training, mentoring programs, student evaluations, discuss with faculty, give examples of good responses to faculty, talk to Dean, give students method to anonymously contact instructor, require faculty to be online student for a month, design course activities that force interaction.
 bAre large group videoconferencing systems on their way "out?" Yes and no. Systems are expensive and old, and investments are now being made in newer technologies, such as online software. However, some faculty still support VC and find it appropriate in certain situations.  Instructor waits 1 hour before test to seek assistance in getting test online: Create and publish policies, offer specific training, don't rescue offenders repeatedly, mentoring program, create incentives, provide training on time mangement, provide student assistance, employproject management organizational model, encourage use of publisher-provided test banks.


Of the 74 conference attendees, 35 completed and turned in evaluations. Overall, we are proud that attendees overwhelmingly found the conference to be a success. Here is a summary of the results, plus some ideas attendees gave us for how to make next year better.

Following are average scores from 1-5, with 5 being the highest.

 Callaway Gardens locations 4.29
 Callaway Gardens INN 4.15
Process for submitting papers 4.78
 Pre-conference registration 4.78
 Registration desk 4.73
 Web site information 4.30
 Conference proceedings 4.76
 Conference program 4.70
 Keynote address 4.70
 Roundtables 4.27
 Concurrent Sessions 4.24
 Scavenger Hunt 4.28
 Robin Beach Cookout 4.12

Length of Session: 30 said the 45-minute sessions were just right. 2 said they were too short. No one said they were too long.

Liklihood of Attending Next Year: 21 said very likely. 13 said somewhat likely. One said not likely.

Should conference remain at Callaway or move around? 16 said stay at Callaway. 8 said move. The remaining had mixed feelings.

Some Things Participants Liked:

  1. specific focus of conference
  2. small size of conference
  3. technical support & nice staff :)
  4. printed proceedings
  5. lots of networking opportunities
  6. keynote speaker

Some Things We'll Change Next Year Per Attendee Suggestions:

  1. add a lunch session with speaker
  2. better directions from airport
  3. later breakfast time
  4. pre-conference information on roundtables
  5. tables in presentation rooms for note-taking
  6. *may* have conference last a day (or half day) longer


Soon we'll begin making plans for next year's conference. Our tenative plans are to again hold the conference during the first week of June at Callaway Gardens. We will send a "Save the Date" notice to all of this year's attendees some time in August. Please email us if you would like to be added to our mailing list.