Check out our fall calendar of events!


Fall Professional Development & Networking Opportunities

Designers for Learning has loaded our fall calendar with exciting professional development and networking events. Take a look at the many ways you can get involved with our nonprofit to take part in professional development opportunities that will help you gain instructional design experience and expand your network of contacts in the field. Please join us!


Enroll in #OpenABE Service-MOOC: September 12 – December 4, 2016

Our next free instructional design course is starting soon. Over 700 have already enrolled in our upcoming 12-week professional development course that is in session from September 12 – December 4, 2016 on Canvas Network, a massive open online course (MOOC) platform.

Our award winning service-course (see below) centers on the design and development of open educational resources (OER) for adult basic education (ABE). In this project-based #OpenABE service-MOOC, participants network with others in the adult education and instructional design fields, and gain instructional design experience while developing educational materials that will be made available for free to adult educators and learners on both OER Commons and Canvas Commons. The course is free, and there are no prerequisites or required purchases. This instructional design course is a fantastic opportunity for graduate students in need of a design project for practicum, internship, or course requirements.

Have you already enrolled in our course? Do you have colleagues or students looking to gain instructional design experience? Please help us spread the news about this upcoming course by forwarding this announcement and the infographic above to others.


Designers for Learning at #AECT16: October 17 – 24, 2016

Designers for Learning is honored to be the recipient of the 2016 Outstanding Practice Award from the Association for Educational Communication and Technology (AECT)for the design and facilitation of our service-MOOC (see above). As a premier international organization for scholars, researchers, and practitioners in the field of instructional design, AECT is dedicated to furthering effective teaching and learning practices. The Outstanding Practice Award is given to individuals or groups that have designed exemplary instructional materials or systems. Our service-MOOC was nominated by a colleague in our field, and was selected by a panel of reviewers withinAECT’s Design and Development Division as the 2016 recipient of this award. Reviewers noted:

“[The service-MOOC] incorporated a crowdsourcing design project approach and authentic design opportunity to develop materials for adult learners and free open educational resources (OER) for adults with low math and literacy skills that demonstrates an iterative design research approach … the professional development experience is well-grounded, implemented, and guided with professional mentors and connections to further real world experience in the practice of instructional design.”

Congratulations to the #OpenABE service-MOOC design and facilitation team for your volunteer service on this project! We thank everyone involved in this course, including designers, facilitators, SMEs, and the 2,000+ who have enrolled in our service-MOOCs this year!

During the upcoming #AECT16 convention October 17 – 24 in Las Vegas, NV, Designers for Learning team members will be manning an exhibitor booth, and presenting sessions, including:

  1. Design & Development – Awardee Presentations: As the Outstanding Practice Award recipient, Designers for Learning will be recognized during an award luncheon, and team members will present an overview of the project in a special session.
  2. Badging for Good – Perceptions of Earning a Digital Badge in a Service MOOC: This presentation will explore learner perceptions of receiving an Instructional Design Service digital badge at the culmination of our service-learning MOOC. Participant insights include the impacts of earning a badge on their levels of motivation, the level of status recognition they attribute to the badge, and their plans for using the badge as evidence of achievement.
  3. Service Learning MOOC Facilitating Strategies: This panel session will review the facilitation strategies used in our service-learning MOOC. The lessons learned from this process will be presented and discussed.

Designers for Learning at #OpenEd16: November 2 – 4, 2016

Several Designers for Learning team members will be presenting sessions at the 13th Annual Open Education Conference (#OpenEd16) in Richmond, VA, including:

  1. Participant Experiences in a Service-MOOC to Design OER for Adult Basic Education: This panel session with several designers, subject matter experts, and course participants from our service-MOOC will discuss their experiences to develop open educational resources (OER) for adult basic education within the course.
  2. Open Education to Support Adult Basic Education: An Exploration of Opportunities and Constraints: This presentation session will explore the opportunities and constraints of open education for designers, instructors, and learners in adult education.

Network during #EdImpact16:
November 12, 2016

Mark your calendar for our inaugural Education Impact Day (#EdImpact16) on Saturday, November 12th. To coincide with Designers for Learning’s fall fundraising campaign, this free 12-hour nonstop webcast-athon event will feature an exciting roster of invited speakers engaged in a global discussion to explore one simple question, “What impact will you make?”. Please keep an eye on our website as event details are finalized.


Help Us Spread the News!

Please help us spread the news about this upcoming course by forwarding this announcement to other interested colleagues or students. Do you have comments or questions about our projects? Would you like to get involved with our organization? Please connect with us at:

Dr. Jennifer Maddrell
Designers for Learning
Designers for Learning.org
Designers for Learning is organized as a nonprofit corporation in the State of Illinois, and operates exclusively for charitable purposes in accordance with section 501(c)(3) of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code. Designers for Learning promotes service-learning opportunities through collaboration with schools, students, and volunteers.

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