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FIRST ANNUAL DIGITAL MEDIA AND LEARNING CONFERENCE

CALL FOR SESSION PROPOSALS
FIRST ANNUAL DIGITAL MEDIA AND LEARNING CONFERENCE
CONFERENCE THEME:DIVERSIFYING PARTICIPATION

February 18 – 20, 2010

Cal IT2
University of California, San Diego
La Jolla, California

We are pleased to announce the first Digital Media and Learning Conference, an annual event supported by the MacArthur Foundation. The conference is meant to be an inclusive, international and annual gathering of scholars and practitioners in the field, focused on fostering interdisciplinary and participatory dialog and linking theory, empirical study, policy, and practice.

For this inaugural year, the theme will be Diversifying Participation. Henry Jenkins is the Chair of the Digital Media and Learning Conference.

We invite submissions for session proposals that speak to the conference theme as well as to the field of digital media and learning more broadly. Those wishing to present work should look to propose or participate in a panel topic (see submission process outlined below).

DIVERSIFYING PARTICIPATION
A growing body of research has identified how young people’s digital media use is tied to basic social and cultural competencies needed for full participation in contemporary society. We continue to develop an understanding of the impact of these experiences on learning, civic engagement, professional development, and ethical comprehension of the digital world.

Yet research has also suggested that young people’s forms of participation with new media are incredibly diverse, and that risks, opportunities, and competencies are spread unevenly across the social and cultural landscape. Young people have differential access to online experiences, practices, and tools and this has a consequence in their developing sense of their own identities and their place in the world. In some cases, different forms of participation and access correspond with familiar cultural and social divides. In other cases, however, new media have introduced novel and unexpected kinds of social differences, subcultures, and identities.

It is far too simple to talk about this in terms of binaries such as “information haves and have nots” or “digital divides.” There are many different kinds of obstacles to full participation, many different degrees of access to information, technologies, and online communities, and many different ways of processing those experiences. Participatory cultures surrounding digital media are characterized by a diversity that does not track automatically to high and low access or more or less sophisticated use. Rather, multiple forms of expertise, connoisseurship, identity, and practice are proliferating in online worlds, with complicated relationships to pre-existing categories such as socioeconomic status, gender, nationality, race, or ethnicity.

We encourage sessions that describe, document, and critically analyze different forms of participation and how they relate to various forms of social and cultural capital. We are interested in accounts of the challenges and obstacles which block or inhibit engagement to different forms of online participation. We also encourage session proposals that engage with successful intervention strategies and pedagogical processes enabling once marginalized groups to more fully exploit the opportunities for learning with digital media. Conversely, we are interested in hearing more about how marginal and subcultural communities find diverse uses of new and emerging technologies, pushing them in new directions and navigating a complicated relationship with “mainstream” forms of participation. Specifically, we seek to understand the following:

  • What can research on more diverse communities contribute to our understanding of the learning ecologies surrounding new media?
  • What are the technologies, practices, economic, and cultural divides that lead to segregation, “gated” information communities, and differential access?
  • When and how do diversity and differentiation in participation promote social and cultural benefits and opportunities, and when do they create schisms that are less equitable or productive?
  • What strategies have proven successful at broadening opportunities for participation, overcoming the many different kinds of segregation or exclusion which impact the online world, and empowering more diverse presences throughout cyberspace?
  • Are there things occurring on the margins of the existing digital culture that might valuably be incorporated into more mainstream practices?

In addition to these questions directly addressing the conference theme, we welcome submissions that address innovative new directions in research and practice relating to digital media and participatory learning.

SUBMISSION DETAILS
The submission system will be available at the end of September 2009.

Submissions should be in the form of full session proposals. Proposed sessions may range from 1 to 2 hours in length and may include traditional paper presentations, hands-on workshops, design critiques, demos, pecha kucha, or roundtable discussions. We welcome and encourage submissions of innovative formats, but request that the proposals come in the form of session proposals rather than individual papers or presentations.

The goal of the event is to foster dialog and build connections. To that end, sessions should have at least three to four presenters and/or discussants. Session organizers should reserve substantial amounts of time for open discussion and exchange.

We have established an open wiki for potential participants to engage in session organizing. The wiki can be used to call for contributions to a briefly outlined session topic, to seek out partners to develop a topic together, to brainstorm about co-presenters, and any other functions potential participants find valuable. The wiki can be accessed at: http://dmlconference2010.wikidot.com/forum:start .

Session organizers should submit proposals that consist of a title and a 200-word abstract (including proposed presentation topics and formats and the speakers and/or discussants). In addition, names and contact details for the session organizers and participants will be required.

Each individual will be limited to participation on no more than two panels at the conference. Participants will be expected to fund their own travel and accommodation. Registration for the conference will be free.

Conference Website: http://dmlcentral.net/conference

Conference Wiki: http://dmlconference2010.wikidot.com/forum:start

KEY DATES AND DEADLINES
Submission System Available: September 30, 2009
Deadline for Submissions: October 30, 2009
Notification of Acceptance: November 30, 2009
Registration System Opens: December 15, 2009

Conference Program Announced: December 15, 2009
Registration Deadline: January 15, 2010
Evening Reception: February 18, 2010

CONTACT INFORMATION
Digital Media and Learning Research Hub
UC Humanities Research Institute
University of California, Irvine
Email:  dmlhub@hri.uci.edu

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2 Responses

  1. When will official sign-up forms be available for participants?

    • Michele,

      we don’t have that info here at UO–read the rest of the post, which will lead you to a contact at UCI (copied below), where presumably someone can answer.

      RHL

      Conference Website: http://dmlcentral.net/conference

      Conference Wiki: http://dmlconference2010.wikidot.com/forum:start

      KEY DATES AND DEADLINES
      Submission System Available: September 30, 2009
      Deadline for Submissions: October 30, 2009
      Notification of Acceptance: November 30, 2009
      Registration System Opens: December 15, 2009

      Conference Program Announced: December 15, 2009
      Registration Deadline: January 15, 2010
      Evening Reception: February 18, 2010

      CONTACT INFORMATION
      Digital Media and Learning Research Hub
      UC Humanities Research Institute
      University of California, Irvine
      Email: dmlhub@hri.uci.edu

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