The Research & Theory Division of AECT is hosting our next professional development seminar.  Here are the details, and I hope you’ll plan to attend.

Scheduled on Feb 6, 2014 at 1:30pm (EST)

Invited speaker: Dr. Ryan Baker (

Topic:  Learning Analytics – Potential and Principles

Increasingly,  students’  educational  experiences  occur  in  the  context  of educational technology, creating opportunities to log student behavior in a fashion that is both longitudinal and very fine-grained. These data are now available to the broad education research community through large public data repositories such as the Pittsburgh  Science of Learning Center (cf. Koedinger  et  al,  2008). In this talk, I will discuss how the emerging Learning Analytics and Educational Data Mining communities are combining these data sources with data mining methods in order to scalably use this data to make basic discoveries about learners and learning. In this talk, I will both discuss learning analytics methods in general, and some of their key applications in studying and supporting learners.

AECT Research and Theory Division logo

As president of the Research and Theory Division (RTD) of the Association for Educational Communications and Technology (AECT), I wanted to let you know about an awesome opportunity to hear from an IDT god.  Dr. David Merrill is Professor Emeritus at Utah State University, and he is a renowned scholar, creating the First Principles for Instruction (here’s a link from Dr. Merrill’s site on the First Principles!).

Dr. Merrill will be presenting a brief webinar to launch our RTD Series of Professional Development.  It is sure to be provocative. Here’s the details and you do have to register beforehand.

Dr. David Merrill
Instructional Effectiveness Consultant & Professor Emeritus at Utah State University

October 17, 2013 at 1:30 P.M. (EDT)

Registration Link:

My Hopes for the Future of Instructional Technology

This short paper presents reasons for three hopes for the future.  First, it is time to move the training of instructional designers to the undergraduate level.  Second, I hope that graduate programs in instructional technology will emphasize both the science of instruction — including theory development and research, and the technology of instruction– including using principles, models and theories derived from research as a foundation for designing instructional design tools that can be used to design instruction that is more effective, efficient and engaging. Third, it is time to restructure our master’s programs to prepare our students to manage designers-by-assignment (DBA) and to prepare them in designing instructional design tools that would enable DBA to produce more effective, efficient and engaging instructional materials.