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Watching PD Around the Globe

By Thomas DeVere Wolsey
 | Oct 16, 2015

shutterstock_213310894_x300A webinar is a “web seminar” that brings people together to interact around common issues and ideas. Seminars traditionally are used for training, exploration of ideas, and for academic inquiry. As the webinar platforms become increasingly stable and able to handle many users at one time, the possibilities have grown exponentially, as well.

Teachers turn to webinars as a source of information and as way to interact with colleagues and ideas well beyond the school walls. Education publishers often offer opportunities to teachers to engage with their authors, for example. School districts are using the webinar platform to connect teachers across schools in rural and urban areas.

As part of an ongoing public service initiative, Turnitin organizes virtual conferences on topics of interest to educators all over the globe. Conference sessions are free to all who register. Recently, I had the honor of joining a group of colleagues in Turnitin’s Student Success Week webinar-based symposium, Writing X Tech: Exploring the Intersection.

One great feature of the webinar is that they are often recorded so that participants may return to the session to review or those who couldn’t attend the session may still view the recording. My session may be viewed here; however, I encourage you to take a look at the other sessions here.

If you would like to read more about the potential of the webinar format, you can read my article on LinkedIn Pulse. The great power of the Internet lies not in the vast amount of information available, but in its capacity to connect people across time and distance.

Thomas DeVere Wolsey is the founder of IAIE, a professional development firm based in Temecula, CA. He teaches graduate literacy courses online, and he is the author of several books including a new volume on the topic of literacy in the disciplines due out from Guilford Press in early 2016.


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