More Conference NOtes…

Posted on May 21, 2014


Take home thoughts from #fsi2014 (faculty staff institute 2014, at University of Illinois)

1.  Conference sessions are not swimming pools or middle school classrooms.   You *can* stop watching them if the technology needs a nudge.  I should have focused entirely on my computer because yes, of *course* it has a headphone jack.   It doesn’t have a mic jack.   Since I was keeping my attention on the “classroom,” I didn’t get there.   (Hopefully I will be able to do that if I need to.)

a.   having everything on a web page including stuff I knew I wouldn’t get to was a really good idea.

2.   The tech stuff really is a whole lot easier to deal with!

3.  BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) has its ups and downs.   For this conference, I think it’s the smart way to go.   I would also, though, simply build in five-ten minutes for people to make sure their devices can do what needs to be done. In our “Game Maker” session, that’s all it took to download the software… tho’ he should have just put the extra files we needed in the cloud to download instead of sending the flash drive all around the room (I suspect that like me, he went into punt mode).

4.   People who can code and program go to this thing!   This opens up all kinds of possibilities, if I could do my app thing.  (the Game Maker session guy asked who in the room was a programmer… )

5.  CAST  is goin’ postsecondary! Universal Design for Learning Guidelines for postsecondary are up.

6.  I *might* want to do this kind of thing again, if I can find somebody to do it with me. Every session I went to had more than one person doin’ it.

7.   I like this flavor conference better than the Big Fat National ones.   Probably more mediocre sessions (like mine) but if it’s an awful session you can check your email… saw an eval for a session that had been left on a table (I hope it gets into the pile) that was pretty harsh … and the person beside me said that she had left that session 20 minutes into it.     One of the fellows who attended mine noted that he hungered for more theory behind the “here’s what I do that works” … which, I think, could be facilitated with “flipping” the conference sessions and providing advance reading.

8.   It’s okay to dress down.

9.   Yes, white males pretty much dominate. Probably fewer than 10% people of color in attendance.


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