Sunday, July 20, 2014

Bb World 2014

What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas, unless of course, you are at Bb World 2014

BbWorld is Blackboard's yearly conference that is loaded with product innovations, ideas, interesting uses presentations, vendors, networking events, and just about anything you can think of that is Bb related. This year, BbWorld 2014 was held in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The theme of BbWorld 2014 was all about reimagining, revisiting, and redesigning, not just the product, but education as a whole, and was a lot of dedication to the idea of making education more 'learner-centric.'

Each day of the conference, we have had amazing keynote speakers that inspired and captivated the audience to improve education in different ways:
CEO of Bb Inc., Jay Bhatt, delivers his Day 2 keynote speech
  •  Day 1: Joi Ito discussed disrupting and defying conventional education that, more often than not, fail to reach leaners effectively. Joi is, unquestionably, a world leader in innovative education, as he is the director of MIT's Media Lab, and hearing him speak about how he views education was incredibly thought provoking. My big takeaway out of the speech is that learning is what you do, and education is what others do to you.That, and, clearly the MIT Media Lab is pretty awesome.
  • Day 2: Jay Bhatt presented the aims and focus of Bb Inc. for the coming year. He brought up several product designers to talk about some exciting changes that will be coming to the Bb Learn, and Bb Collaborate products (there were other products that were discussed, but many of them were focused towards K-12 markets)
  • Day 3: Geoffrey Canada left the room speechless as he discussed obstacles, difficulties, and outright flaws of the US education system. At the end of his speech, everybody in the room felt like they should do more to impact the learners around them. 
Sam Houston State University's, Jacob Spradlin, teaches the audience about one approach for training faculty with Bb
Between keynote speeches there were tons of breakout sessions that highlighted interesting uses within the Blackboard community.  These sessions were incredibly diverse, and encompassed just about every possible Bb use you could think of, and then some.

A sneak peak at the vendor area before the day begins
Though, if you just went to the breakout sessions, and the keynote speeches, you would be missing out on some of the best that Bb world had to offer because you wouldn't be spending valuable time networking with some of the pillars of the Bb community, visiting the Bb Usability lab (which frequents SU) to see and provide feedback for some of Bb's upcoming releases, and speaking with vendors who have incredible solutions to some of ed-tech's hurdles.

 Oh, and if you're lucky, you might just find yourself meeting the CEO and taking a, shameless, selfie with him...

No comments:

Post a Comment