emerge 2008 Professionalising Practices

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About the Conference

e/merge 2008 - Professionalising Practices is the third virtual conference on educational technology in Africa and builds on the e/merge conferences in 2004 and 2006. e/merge 2008 will take place online from 7 - 18 July 2008 and may include associated face to face events in a number of cities. The conference is primarily designed to share good practice and knowledge about educational technology innovation within the further and higher education sectors in the region, as well as to strengthen communities of researchers and practitioners.

There has been exponential growth in the use of online and networked learning environments in tertiary education in Africa. Similar trends seem likely to emerge in secondary education. Successful integration of the new waves of learning technology in teaching and learning depends crucially on the efforts and practices of the emerging profession of educational technologists and the adoption of new practices by lecturers and teachers. e/merge 2008 focuses on professionalising the new practices of teaching with technology. This includes sharing stories, sharing good practices and sharing research. The conversations in e/merge 2008 will engage with our regional context of unequal access to technology and to education within a global context of changes in teaching and learning tools and practices.

Our initial call for proposals closed in March 2008. The final call for proposals closes on 16th April 2008. Please see the Call for Papers for more details.

Who is the conference for?
e/merge 2008 is primarily for educational technology researchers and practitioners based in Southern Africa and the English-speaking African countries in West and East Africa. Participants from other regions who have an interest in the use of educational technology in Africa will also be warmly welcomed.

Who is organising the conference?
e/merge 2008 is organised by the Centre for Educational Technology at the University of Cape Town. We are open to collaborating with other organisations and networks in the region and beyond to ensure a high quality, dynamic conference. e/merge 2008 is funded by the Ford Foundation.

What is an online conference?
In a conventional conference everyone travels to one physical location to debate conference papers and to network. In an online conference we use a website as the conference venue. We can view selected presentations, read conference papers, share useful resources, take part in debate, share best practices and network informally.

Mostly these online meetings are spread over a few days to allow us the flexibility to take part when we choose. There will also be some live meetings online which enhance the sense of shared presence and energise the conference. Overall, an online conference creates opportunities for rich conversations which grow knowledge in a community involving experts and practitioners.

How much time will it take?
That's entirely up to you. You can choose to focus on a few discussions that interest you if you have very limited time available for participation. Most participants in previous e/merge conferences spent up to 10 hours online over a two week period.

What do I need to take part?
A reliable dialup or network Internet connection will allow for a full experience of the conference.

How much does the conference cost?
The conference fees have been set to encourage participation:

  • Participants based in Africa - R200
  • Participants from other regions - R780 (approx US$100)

There will be a small number of sponsored places.

How do I sign up?
Online registration opens at 12.00 (GMT+2) on 9th April 2008. if you would like to contact us before then, please email us at info@emerge2008.net.