Campus News

11th International Conference on Advanced Learning Technologies to draw 200 to UGA July 6-8

Rory McGreal

Athens, Ga. – More than 200 faculty members and doctoral students from universities around the world in fields such as computer science, educational psychology and instructional technology will hear the latest research for learning at the 11th International Conference on Advanced Learning Technologies, to be held July 6-8 at the University of Georgia.

The conference, considered to be one of the world’s premier events in the field of educational psychology, will feature three international speakers and provide topics on everything from virtual worlds to mobile and wireless technologies.

UGA Provost Jere Morehead, UGA Vice President for Research David Lee and Associate Dean for Research in UGA’s College of Education Noel Gregg will welcome conference participants with brief remarks at the onset of the conference.

Rory McGreal, associate vice president of Athabasca University in Alberta, Canada, one of Canada’s leaders in online and distance education, will be the keynote speaker at the conference, which is being hosted by the UGA College of Education. McGreal, who also is the UNESCO/COL Chair Holder in Open Educational Resources, will deliver an address titled “Creationism, Evolution and Advanced Learning Technologies” July 7 at 9 a.m. in Mahler Auditorium of the Georgia Center for Continuing Education.

McGreal is an expert in the implementation and management of distance education systems and networks from technological, pedagogical and policy perspectives. His research focuses on the use of Open Educational Resources and standards in technology assisted learning, particularly in the development and application of learning objects. He also studies how these methods could be applied and formatted on mobile devices for M-learning.

McGreal was previously the executive director of TeleEducation NB TeleEducation, a bilingual (French/English) province-wide distance learning network. He led a team that implemented the world’s first distance education website, a learning management system, and the TeleCampus, a comprehensive learning object metadata database of online courses. He received the prestigious Wedemeyer Award for Distance Education Practitioner in 2002.

He received his Ph.D. in computer technologies from Nova Southeastern University’s School of Computer and Information Science.

Dragana Brzakovic, a senior staff associate of the National Science Foundation’s Science and Technology Centers, will speak on “Advanced Learning Technologies: Opportunities and Challenges” July 7, at 3 p.m. in Mahler Auditorium.

Brzakovic provides oversight of six centers in the STC program, coordination of various activities in the program and coordination of the NSF Centers Forum. During 2007, Brzakovic was Brookings Legislative Fellow on Capitol Hill.She coordinated the Major Research Instrumentation program for the NSF from 2003-06.She started in the NSF’s Office of Integrative Activities in 2000 by managing the STC: Integrative Partnerships competition.

Prior to the NSF, Brzakovic was a professor of electrical engineering and computer science at Lehigh University from 1992-2000 and associate professor of electrical engineering at the University of Tennessee from 1989-92.Her research interests were in the areas of computer vision and image understanding. She received her Ph.D. in electrical engineering from the University of Florida.

Marco Marsella, an Information Society and Media Directorate General with the European Commission, will speak on “Technology-Enhanced Learning in Europe” July 8 at 9 a.m. in Mahler Auditorium.

Marsella contributes to policy development, innovation and research strategies in the area of digital content and access to knowledge. He serves in the Cultural Heritage and Technology Enhanced Learning unit supporting European Union research activities that aim to improve information and communication technologies in learning environments.

Michael Spector, professor and research scientist in the UGA College of Education’s Learning and Performance Support Laboratory, is the conference co-chair.

The conference is sponsored by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, the IEEE’s Computer Society and the IEEE’s Technical Committee on Learning Technology.

For more information on the conference, see For more information on UGA’s College of Education, see