- Prof. Manuel Castro Gil, National University for Distance Education, Spain
Title: Services Support and Reutilization for the Technology Enhanced Learning

- Prof. Mats Daniels, Uppsala University, Sweden
Title: Learning Issues in Open-ended Group Projects

- Prof. Edmundo Tovar, Madrid Polytechnic University, Spain
Title: Quality Policies conformed with ABET in a Spanish Engineering School

- Prof. Thao Le, Faculty of Education, University of Tasmania, Australia
Title: Information Technologies and Educational Empowerment: A Humanistic Perspective

- Prof. Wim Veen, Delft University of Technology, The Netherlands
Title: Homo Zappiens, Learning in a Digital Age

- Dr. Itiel Dror, University College London, United Kingdom
Title:New Frontiers in Computer Supported Education
Keynote Lecture 1
Services Support and Reutilization for the Technology Enhanced Learning
  Prof. Manuel Castro Gil
National University for Distance Education
Brief Bio
Electrical and Computer Engineering educator in the Spanish University for Distance Education (UNED), has an industrial engineering degree from the ETSII (Industrial Engineering School) of the Madrid Polytechnic University (UPM) and a doctoral engineering degree from the same University. Has received the Extraordinary Doctoral Award in the UPM and the Viesgo 1988 Award to the Doctoral Thesis improving the Scientific Research about the Industrial Process Electricity Application. Has received the 1997 and 1999 years UNED's Social Council for the Best Didactic Materials in Experimental Sciences and the 2001 Award for the Innovative Excellence in Teaching, Learning & Technology from the Center for the Advancement of Teaching and Learning. He works as researcher, coordinator and director in different projects, ranging from solar system and advanced microprocessor system simulation to telematics and distance learning systems, acting now as and senior technical director. He is now with the UNED (Spanish University for Distance Education) as Professor in the Electronics Technology subject inside the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department as well as he is Director of the Department. He was serving as UNED's Vice-Rector of New Technologies, ETSII's Research and Doctorate Vicedirector and Academic Affaires Vicedirector and UNED's Information Services Center Director. He worked during 5 years in Digital Equipment Corporation as senior system engineer. He publishes technical books and articles for journals and conferences as well as multimedia materials and radio and TV programas. He belongs to the organizing committee of IEEE FIE, ISES, TAEE and SAAEI conferences as well as reviewer and chairman. He is Fellow member of IEEE as well as member of the Administration Committee (AdCOM) of the IEEE Education Society and Founder and Past-Chairman of the Spanish Chapter of the IEEE Education Society.

This lecture will provide information about the services definition inside Technology Enhanced Learning as well as the support of new features and applications integrated inside the education frameworks or platforms. These new services are changing and upgrading the methods, tools, applications and possibilities used by the educators in the new integrated space of higher education and longlife learning.
Keynote Lecture 2
     Learning Issues in Open-ended Group Projects
  Prof. Mats Daniels
Uppsala University
Brief Bio
Mats Daniels, Senior lecturer, Department of Information Technology, Uppsala University, Sweden.  I have taught courses since 1980 at Uppsala University, except during 1989-90 when being a guest lecturer at La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia.  I have since 1991 been director of undergraduate education at the department and as such been intimately involved in the development of the education at the department.  My dedication to education, is manifested in working towards establishing Computing Education Research as a subject and driving several development and research projects, e.g. the Runestone project where students from Sweden and USA collaborate.  My main body of publications is in educational conferences such as IEEE Frontiers in Education, ACM Australasian Computing Conference (ACE), and ACM Innovation and Technology in Computer Science Education (ITiCSE).  I’m also director of the national center for pedagogical development in technology education in a societal and student oriented context (CeTUSS, www.cetuss.se that was founded 2004.  I have been conference chair and program chair as well as functioning in other roles for the ACM ITiCSE conference, and am currently future ITiCSE Site coordinator.  I was one of the founding members, and is since 2005 acting as chair, of the IEEE Nordic Education Society Chapter, which won the first IEEE Education chapter achievement award 2006.

My ambition when it comes to education is to find new formats and especially such where the students will experience a holistic learning environment, e.g. in Open Ended Group Projects.  Vital in this work is to base it on a sound pedagogical foundation as well as the subject as such in a manner that is well anchored among the teaching practitioners.

Learning environments based on open-ended group projects (OEGPs) have the potential to meet complex learning goals such as professional and personal development, as well as more traditional subject related goals. OEGPs offer a setting in which a holistic approach to what the students should learn. There are however several pitfalls to pay attention to. Theories related to learning in OEGPs and practical examples will be presented in an attempt to promote an enlightened use of OEGPs in our education through  raising awareness of the pros and cons of the method. 

Keynote Lecture 3
     Quality Policies conformed with ABET in a Spanish Engineering School

  Prof. Edmundo Tovar
Madrid Polytechnic University

Brief Bio
Edmundo Tovar, Computer Engineering educator, has a Ph. D. (1994) and a Bachelor’s degree (1986) in Computer Engineering from the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid (UPM). He is Certified Software Development Professional (CSDP) from the IEEE Computer Society and he has worked for five years in private companies as a knowledge engineer and in Public Administration as a Software Engineer. Expert evaluator in Accreditation processes with the Spanish Agency for Quality Assessment and Accreditation, ANECA, he has been involved as a researcher in software quality management tasks in international projects since 1988, managing several innovative projects in education in the context of the European Higher Education Area. He is Associate Dean for Quality and Strategic Planning in the Computing School of the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid. Leader of a Innovation Group in Education in the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid is author of more 40 papers in Engineering Education, and member of several Program Committees in Congresses of this area, he is cochair for Europe of Frontiers Education Conference (FIE) and member of IEEE RITA Editorial Committee. He is IEEE Senior Member, and, as at-large member of the Administrative Committee of the IEEE Education Society.

The European Higher Education Area is an example of diversity of political systems, higher education systems, socio-cultural and educational traditions, languages, aspirations and expectations. In the light of this diversity and variety, technical universities set its face to develop their internal quality assurance systems according to the European standards and the guidelines, focusing more on what should be done than how they should be achieved, but also to different factors and sources. This presentation explains the definition of quality policies in a Spanish Engineering school, including engineering accreditation, programs, funding programs or improvement.

Keynote Lecture 4
     Information Technologies and Educational Empowerment: A Humanistic Perspective

  Prof. Thao Le
Faculty of Education, University of Tasmania
Brief Bio
Dr. Thao Le completed the Bachelors Degree in English linguistics at Saigon University in 1969. With a special interest in ethnography and an enthusiasm of a young graduate, he moved on to undertake a research Masters in Jarai, a highland minority language in Central Highlands of Vietnam. However his dream of living with culturally isolated mountain people as a part of his research fieldwork was dashed due to the fierce war taking place throughout Vietnam at that time.
In 1971 Dr. Thao Le was awarded a research scholarship by Monash University, Australia, to undertake PhD in linguistics. His PhD thesis was on semantically based theories.

Dr. Thao Le was offered a lectureship at the University of Tasmania in 1974 and has been teaching in the Faculty of Education till now. He has held various positions and played important roles in the development of the Faculty such as: Senior Lecturer, Assistant Dean, Director of the Masters Program, Graduate Research Coordinator and Associate Dean (Research). Currently he is lecturing in postgraduate courses and supervising eighteen research students. He was awarded the Faculty of Education Mentor Award and the University Teaching Excellence Award.
His research interests cover a wide range of academic areas:  linguistics, inclusive education, educational multimedia, intercultural studies, Artificial Intelligence, and research methodology. His recent publications were three chapters in the book Technology and Teaching edited by Professor Sigafoos and published by Nova Science Publishers in New York in October 2007.

His forthcoming book Critical Discourse Analysis: An Interdisciplinary Perspective, to be published by Nova Science Publishers in New York in  2009.

In many industrialized societies, life has changed drastically due to the permeation of information technologies in many aspects of society such as business, government, commerce, education as well as daily activities. We have been consciously or unconsciously acculturated into a computer-based social discourse. While some of us are still marveled at the magical power that information technologies have offered, others may take it for granted that due to the inevitable permeation of information technologies, we have to accept its impacts on our lives. The proliferation of software products and computer-based projects showing their positive impacts on teaching and learning is like constant tidal waves. Information technologies are rapidly growing at such a fast speed that what we consider as ‘current development’ will soon become outdated. Computer educational software depends heavily on hardware. A new development in hardware can trigger new directions in software development and implementation and vice versa. The real challenge for educators is to examine how computer software and hardware are used in a meaningful discourse to enhance children’s development, intellectually, emotionally and socially. In the context of educational evaluation, instead of focusing on traditional features for evaluating software such as screen design, navigation, text type, cost and user-friendliness, it is useful to employ the concept ‘metaphor’ as a basis on which we examine the role of computer in teaching and learning. How computer is viewed and valued in education depends greatly on the theoretical perspectives of the beholders. In other words, different computer metaphors reveal different views and attitudes of the users and the concept ‘computer-assisted learning’ does not adequately capture. From a humanistic perspective, technology is a product of scientific knowledge in a human world which is culturally diversified. Our worldview, self-concept and identity belong to the human world. Technology should be used to change the way we think of ourselves in relation to other human beings and the land on which we live. It raises the issues of environmental awarenes , international understanding, and human co-existent as world citizens. Technology permeates many aspects of society that it affects the quality of life both positively and negatively. The quality of life is not just about goods and services, but fundamentally it is about mindfulness. One of the big challenges in computer supported education is the response to the question: How should computer technology be used to enhance learners in terms of intellectual, social and emotional development? This challenge shifts our attention from the emphasis on a narrow context of academic learning to humanistic learning discourse. 

Keynote Lecture 5
       Homo Zappiens, Learning in a Digital Age

  Prof. Wim Veen
Delft University of Technology
The Netherlands

Brief Bio
Wim Veen (1946) is a full professor at Delft University of Technology, Faculty of Technology, Policy and Management. His research focuses on new concepts and strategies for ICT enhanced learning in both private companies and regular educational institutions. Traditional learning arrangements no longer hold in a society where knowledge is a key asset of networked organizations. Knowledge production and sharing require flexible strategies for professional development in which learning is an embedded and continuous team activity that is work based, networked, informal, self regulated, and strongly related to business goals or core activities of the organization. In the corporate sector, employees are the social capital of the business.
In regular educational institutions teaching and learning are also undergoing profound changes. Delivery modes are replaced by blends of distributed, networked, and face-to-face learning approaches requiring students to become active and productive learners.
Both in the private and public sector the uses of technology appears to be crucial in new ways of learning, knowledge co-creation and sharing.
Related to the above-mentioned changes in learning, Wim Veen is particularly interested in the cyber culture of the generation growing up with technology. He uses the concept of Homo Zappiens, a generation of learners that has never known its world without the Internet. This generation appears to develop a variety of meta-cognitive skills that are mostly disregarded by traditional teachers and managers. It is now time to learn from this net generation how to take advantage of ICT enabled learning in a networked society.  
Wim Veen is teaching corporate learning. In addition, he is a consultant for educational institutions as well as for private companies and governmental authorities.

Nowadays’ students have grown up with technology as a commodity for playing, communication, information and for learning. Many of them act within virtual environments and have developed virtual identities as an extension of self (Second Life, WOW, Facebook, Plaxo, Plazes, Twitter, Dopplr etc.) Wim Veen argues that their online behavior and their virtual presence in cyber space have fostered the development of competencies that former generations could only do within a restricted realm of physical presence. For this generation, called Homo Zappiens, scarcity of reaching out, communications and resources has vanished to a large extent; Homo Zappiens lives in human and technical networks that provide new opportunities to act experiment and learn. Homo Zappiens learns within social networks where content is distributed and discontinuous. As a consequence, future learning will be based on concepts of aggregation, externalization, collective knowledge creation and immersion.

How do these uses of technologies go in parallel with developments in businesses, schools and society? How do prepare companies for these upcoming changes? And how relations between governmental authorities and citizens are going to change? In times of uncertainty and change the educational sector seems to react regressively: ‘back to the past’. But schools have always been part of a socio-economic system, so looking away from what is happening in the outside world is not an option. If change is the only certainty for future, how technology can help to support change? A bunch of questions to be answered during the conference.

Keynote Lecture 6
     New Frontiers in Computer Supported Education

  Dr. Itiel Dror
University College London
United Kingdom
Brief Bio
Dr Dror holds a doctorate in cognitive neuroscience from Harvard University and specializes in the fields of learning, training & skill acquisition, technology & cognition, and human performance, expertise & decision making. He has received numerous awards for his research and teaching innovations, and is a recognized international leader in learning technologies. Dr Dror has conducted research and consultancy for numerous organisations, including the UK Identity and Passport Service, US Air Force, the Japanese Advanced Science Project, the European Aerospace Research & Development Agency, and for a variety of police forces in the UK and in other countries. He has also worked with a host of commercial companies, including IBM, Orange, PricewaterhouseCoopers, and Deutsche Bank.

Itiel’s interest and experience is in taking scientific knowledge and theoretical academic models about the human brain and mind, and translating them into practical ways to improve and affect human performance and decision making in the workplace. Much of his applied work relates to learning and skill acquisition, decision making, and how technology can aid in changing behaviours and cognition. Dr Dror is an associate editor of Pragmatics and Cognition, and is editing a five year series on Cognition and Technology. A special issue on Learning Technologies is currently in press.

Education is not only about acquiring information and knowledge, but also (and mainly) about whether and how these are remembered and used. To understand education and learning and how technology can affect it, is less about what is taught and what technology is used, and much more about what learners learn: If you want people to learn using learning technology, you need first to understand how they learn.
In this keynote talk Itiel Dror will illustrate that when you know what learning is all about, then seemingly small differences in the way learning materials are designed and delivered can make a huge difference to their effectiveness. The full potential of technology enhanced learning depends crucially on those involved having an understanding of what learning is all about, and the know-how to apply it in practice.
Itiel’s paper "Technology Enhanced Learning: The good, the bad, and the ugly" introduces some of this general approach, and a specific illustration of it can be seen in his paper "Helping the cognitive system learn: exaggerating distinctiveness and uniqueness".
These and other papers can be downloaded from: http://cognitiveconsultantsinternational.com/training.htm

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