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ACU presents as “three of the best” at international technology conference; selected finalist for innovation award

By Floyd Miller



Abilene Christian University freshmen are “connected,” and the whole world is taking notice. In recognition of the innovative Mobile Learning Initiative, ACU was invited to present at the Handheld Learning Conference 2008, a prestigious British educational conference that has gained itself a reputation for drawing discussion of leading-edge technology from all over the globe. It is cosponsored by innovative leaders Apple, BECTA, Nintendo, T-Mobile, Walt Disney and BBC Channel 4.{{more}}d”Now in its fourth year, the Handheld Learning Conference has already established itself as a center for new ideas about mobile learning,” said Dr. William Rankin, co-director of Mobile Learning Research at ACU. “This conference is drawing some of the biggest corporate names in the industry and helping them connect with educators in primary, secondary and higher education.”Rankin, along with George Saltsman, director of the Adams Center for Teaching and Learning, Dr. James Langford, director of Web Integration and Programming, and Dr. Kyle Dickson, co-director of Mobile Learning Research, presented at the conference.Dickson spoke about ACU’s Mobile Learning Initiative in the panel, “Three of the Best,” which focused on three of the most innovative initiatives in the educational world, and identified what makes them successful and original.”At ACU, we feel especially privileged to have been accepted into this conference, and we’re pleased that those associated with the conference have been so supportive of the work we’re doing,” said Rankin. “We think it’s critically important to be involved in these sorts of discussions and conferences. Hearing what others are doing and sharing our own ideas with them helps move everyone forward, and we think this will bring enormous benefits to students and teachers.” Abilene Christian has further been recognized as an innovative leader, by being named as a finalist for the Handheld Learning Innovation Award for tertiary education. The winner was left up to popular vote, with people texting in their vote for the most innovative initiative. Although ACU’s initiative did not win, being named a finalist was an honor considering the reputation of the conference, said Rankin.”We really feel that we’re looking at a transformative moment in education, and we’re pleased to be at the center of these discussions,” Rankin said. While in Europe, the ACU representatives will speak to a group of European universities and government agencies about the initiative. For more information ACU’s Mobile Learning Initiative, visit the Connected website.

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