The Future Trends Forum

Welcome to the Future Trends Forum, an ongoing, participatory, and open video conversation about the future of higher education.

Forum screenshot: Taskeen and a crowdEach week a different guest – an inspiring expert, visionary, practitioner, or researcher – converses about their area of interest.  I kick off the discussion with a question or two, then facilitate further questions and comments generated by participants via chat, video, and Twitter.  Discussion is the name of the game, as we avoid PowerPoint and encourage the entire audience to actively engage.

Forum KevinDeLePlante_Keesa Johnson

If you’ve ever joined a Future Trends Forum with Bryan Alexander, you know it’s the best webinar series in education.

-Maria Anderson, founder and CEO of Coursetune;
guest in April 2018

Guests have ranged from deans to librarians, startup founders to journalists, leading technologists and technology critics.  They are associated with entities like the United States Department of Education, Google, the University of Cambridge, and the Digital Public Library of America.  They have included Audrey Watters, Martin Dougiamas, Anya Kamenetz, Cable Green, Curtis Bonk, Robbie Melton, George Siemens, Casey Green, Deanna Marcum, Jim Groom, Robert Archibald, Phil Long, Gardner Campbell (Campus Technology article), Will Richardson and Richard DeMillo, and more.

You are the best host I have seen over the years…

Trent Batson, Ph.D.

Director, The Last Humans Project

Thanks to you for literally conjuring up the channel of discussion from scratch. Without your presence in the community, I don’t know how else these discussions would be surfaced so accessibly.

You provide an essential service to the advancement of the HE profession and it is greatly appreciated. It is a privilege to be called upon to participate in it.

Steve Covello, instructional designer at Granite State College

Topics have covered a wide range, such as: open education, financing education, blockchain and other emerging technologies, institutional transformation, testing and assessment, students hosting their own web content, connections between K-12 and post-secondary schooling, and the Internet of Everything, to name a few.

Future Trends Forum with Bryan and Audrey Watters

The Shindig platform in operation.  Guest and host are on top; participants are on the bottom left and center, chat box on the lower right.

I also have to thank Bryan Alexander and his wonderful FTTE project (Future Trends in Technology and Education), specifically the Thursday Forums, for making this happen. When there is a guest on FTTE that I really want to interact with, I try to join the live Thursday event. So, when John Warner was a guest back in August 2019, I was there in the audience, and thanks to John’s kind words about my approach to teaching online (someone asked about online teaching during the Q&A), I later heard from Greg, who was John’s editor for Why They Can’t Write: Killing the Five-Paragraph Essay and Other Necessities (which is a fabulous book; highly recommended)… and that’s how this project took shape. It’s the power of connecting and sharing online!

-Laura Gibbs

Each session lasts one hour, and is open to anyone with a digital device, the Chrome browser (preferably) or the Shindig mobile client,  and decent broadband.

If you’d like to speak out loud with participants, or to join guests, participants, and myself on stage, you should have a working microphone and camera.

Every week’s Forum enters our free and accessible archive.  We record each event, then upload it to YouTube.  Every recording is available here, for your free viewing, listening, commenting, linking, and embedded pleasure.  Blog posts add my introductions, notes and any Twitter conversation.

Please join us.  Check back on this page for more information, or add your info here:

Forum screenshot

(last image by Daniel Lynds)