Digital Learning in the Age of COVID
Spring semester 2020 brought inexorable change to postsecondary institutions. In a near collective pivot, faculty, instructors, students, learners, entire organizations around the globe moved from primarily in-person to emergency remote learning in response to the spread of COVID-19. The death of George Floyd and resulting protests focused the spotlight on the systemic racism and inequities of our institutions and traditional teaching practices. The pace and intensity of change has been relentless, wearying, and yet we must ask: what’s next? How can we translate the affordances of in-person learning into online or technology-enhanced environments without, out of force of habit or inattention, replicating inequitable practices that have long been a part of postsecondary cultures. This will be a highly interactive Grand Rounds using a new tool (Engageli) for breakout groups. Participants will leave with one new inclusive, equitable digital learning design or practice to explore in their own courses.
By the end of this session, participants will be able to:
1. Differentiate between COVID emergency remote teaching and intentionally designed online and technology-enabled learning
2. Generate ideas for realizing the affordances of traditional in-person learning in online or tech-enhanced environments
3. Evaluate those ideas through a social justice lens
4. Identify one new inclusive, equitable learning design or practice to explore
Deborah Keyek-Franssen, Ph.D. and Associate Vice President and Dean of Online and Continuing Education at the University of Utah, is a creative educator and thought leader with over two decades of experience in IT and higher education. She began her career at the University of Colorado in 1998, where she served as director of academic technology; oversaw strategy and research in the use, implementation, and evaluation of educational technologies; and managed a team of consultants and technologists. Working across the CU System as the AVP for Digital Education and Engagement, she was instrumental in furthering CU campuses' implementation of digital and online education solutions, including MOOCs, and served as the director of the Colorado Learning and Teaching with Technology (COLTT) Conference. In her current role, she is developing, evolving, and assessing a vibrant, nimble, and relevant curriculum of non-credit, for-credit and lifelong learning opportunities for Utahans and beyond. She is an inaugural member of the Coursera Advisory Council and served as faculty director of the EDUCAUSE Management Institute. She also served as the vice-chair of the statewide Colorado Open Educational Resources (OER) Council, and sat on the steering committee for the National Association for System Heads’ (NASH) Taking Student Success to Scale initiative. She has supported the National Center for Women & IT (NCWIT) for nearly two decades, participated in research and program development to increase the number of girls, women, and underrepresented minorities in IT education and work, and founded the EDUCAUSE Women in IT Community Group. Deborah is a graduate of Dartmouth College and completed her Ph.D. in German Literature at the University of Michigan, where she also earned a master's degree in Higher Education Administration from the Center for the Study of Higher and Postsecondary Education and a graduate certificate in Women's Studies.