Columbia Southern University Virtual Conference to Offer Engaging Experience for Educators

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Online higher education conference features topics on teaching in "Age of Digital Distraction,' experiential learning, stress reduction, comment bank and more

Katie Linder, left, and Sher Downing will be keynote speakers at Columbia Southern University's online Excellence in Higher Education Conference Sept.27-28.

Columbia Southern University is gearing up for a highly enlightening online experience for educators: the Excellence in Higher Education Conference 2016.

This two-day conference will help educators push the edge of the profession and create a culture of excellence in higher education. The conference begins broadcasting online at 9 a.m. on Sept. 27 and 28 and will feature a bevy of presenters and topics addressing ways to improve higher education.

Day One’s keynote speaker, for example, “will explore how to break through the cognitive overload that our students experience on a daily basis and discuss how we can help our students develop effective strategies for learning in the midst of this Age of Digital Distraction,” said Katie Linder, Ph.D.

Linder is an avid writer and researcher with a passion for connecting audiences with the latest research on distance education and student learning. She has a weekly solo podcast, essay series and new book, “The Blended Course Design Workbook: A Practical Guide.”

“In our classrooms, we often feel that we are competing with a range of distractions that our students are encountering each day. Rather than think of this experience as a competition, I believe that we can use technology and what we know about how the brain works to our advantage,” Linder added.

Sher Downing, Ph.D., an education tech specialist with more than 25 years of experience in higher education, will present her research on experiential learning in her keynote address on Day Two.

Downing will delve into using experiential learning to create a culture of experience, exceptionalism and engagement. “We’ll take a look at how minor changes in how we approach assignments and discussions can lead to reflection and a variety of experiences,” she explained.

Other guest speakers and topics at the CSU conference include:

  •     Katrina Everhart, “The Behavioral Economics of Vicarious Learning through Peer Tutoring”
  •     Deb Lindh, “Practical Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (PMBSR) for Educators”
  •     James Watkins, “What’s a Comment Bank and Why Do I Need One?”
  •     Kim Langham, “Tapping Into Learner Creativity to Increase Student Engagement”
  •     Pete Trzop, “Using Videos in Discussion Posts”

This exciting event will be broadcast online at no cost for attendees who can register at:

We are privileged to provide a venue for educators to come and share their work. We have a great diversity of topics and presenters and are delighted to have Dr. Katie Linder and Dr. Sher Downing present as keynotes in this year’s conference,” said Kim Langham, Ph.D, director of Faculty Development at CSU.

Questions? Please email Peter.Eggebraaten(at)columbiasouthern(dot)edu.

Columbia Southern University offers online certificate and degree programs in various fields such as human resource management, organizational leadership, fire administration, criminal justice and business administration. For more information about CSU, visit or call 800-977-8449.

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Anthony Cornealius
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