Online Learning Consortium Announces the Winners of the 2021 Digital Learning Awards to be Celebrated at OLC Accelerate


BOSTON, 23 Aug 2021 / PRNewswire / – The e-learning consortium (OLC) today announced the winners of the 2021 OLC Accelerate Award, celebrating peer-reviewed excellence in digital teaching and learning practices and scholarships, equity and inclusion, and education opened.

“The OLC Awards program is an opportunity to showcase leadership and innovation in online, blended and digital learning,” said Dr. Jennifer mathes, President and CEO of the Online Learning Consortium. “We are thrilled to amplify the inspirational work of our award recipients and look forward to announcing the OLC Fellows 2021 class soon. The awards program not only allows us to celebrate the incredible work that has been done by our community over the course of the past year, but look forward to what’s possible in the coming year. “

This year’s OLC Accelerate Award recipients include the following list of winners:

Michel Tassio, Aaran Zachmeier, Nandina Bhattacharya of University of California Santa Cruz, who received the Excellence in Faculty Development for Online Education price for their submission titled Integrated course design for distance education. As a result of this self-paced faculty development initiative, online courses at UC Santa Cruz have improved not only in terms of accessibility, but also other access issues highlighted and rendered. visible by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The online and continuing training center of Atlantic University of Florida, who received the Award for Excellence and Innovation in Online Education (Instructional Design) for their submission entitled Engage online students in immersive and interactive science lab experiences. The Virtual Lab provides students with an interactive visual exploration of the lab space, with particular emphasis on what they need to know to achieve course objectives. Exploration of the laboratory environment is made possible through the use of relatively inexpensive 360-degree cameras and virtual reality glasses or a computer, tablet or smartphone.

Sandhya (Sandy) Maranna from the University of South australia who received the Excellence and Innovation Award in Online Education (Faculty) for his thesis entitled Creating innovative digital assessments to improve higher-order thinking in medical ultrasound students taking courses related to women’s health. Maranna notes that “my approach to online teaching is underpinned by the belief that students are motivated to learn when they understand the meaning of the learning strategy’s purpose.

Dr. Sheryl Burgstahler of University of Washington, Seattle who received the Leadership on Equity and Inclusion in Online Learning Price for his contributions to the field of digital learning illustrating the principles of equity and inclusion in accessibility spaces. One of its proponents noted that “Sheryl was one of the first educators to think about universal design in online education, and her work over the years to create ideas and resources for the benefit of students. disabled and others have had an immeasurable impact. ”

Dr. Sherri Restauri of Coastal Carolina University, who received the Gomory-Mayadas Leadership Award in Higher Education for his contributions and in recognition of his leadership in the online education community. One of her letters of recommendation read: “Dr Restauri sleeps, eats and breathes online education, not because it’s her job, but because she believes in the transformative power of education and is dedicated to creating platforms that make it easier for everyone to access that power She is a visionary and her transformational leadership on our campus has made us better educators.

Dr. Barbara means Executive Director of Learning Sciences Research at Digital Promise, who received the Online Learning Journal Award for Excellence in Research in Online Education. This year, his article Teaching and Learning in the Era of COVID: A Student Perspective (co-written with Dr. Julie neisler) was featured in the 25th anniversary issue of Online learning and focused on the emergency transition to distance learning in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Dr. Marianne hawken and the education technology team of the information technology division of the University of Maryland, Baltimore County who received a Effective practice prize for their project titled Educational Variety Planning for Online Learning (PIVOT). PIVOT has reached around 70% of UMBC faculty and the majority of participants said the program has been helpful in their educational transition to online teaching. The professors found their role as students in the training course and access to peer mentors to be among the most valuable aspects of the program.

Linda Merillat from the School of Nursing Washburn University, who received a Effective practice prize for his project entitled Interactive Instructional Design (ITD): A Proven Faculty Enrichment Program for Online Teaching. ITD combines key elements of teaching and learning with principles of interaction design. It can be applied universally, but it is particularly useful for designing facilitated learning experiences using online environments.

Dr. Liz Owens-Boltz, Brittany Dillman, and Candace robertson of University of Michigan who received an Effective Practice award for their project entitled MAET Blog Series and Distance Education Mini-MOOC. The blog series and mini-MOOC provided educators with basic building blocks and critical goals for tech-free, low-tech, and high-tech strategies to create the fair and accessible learning experiences possible during the sudden shift. distance education due to COVID-19. .

We invite the public to join us for a complimentary roundtable and celebration at the OLC Accelerate Virtual Awards Gala, which will take place on Monday, September 20, 2021 To 7:45 p.m. as part of the OLC Accelerate virtual program. More information can be found at Additionally, opportunities to engage directly with these winners are currently planned after the conclusion of the OLC Accelerate conference, when a selection of these award winners will host free public webinars for the OLC community. The final schedule for these webinars, as well as the announcement of the OLC Fellows 2021 class will be announced in a future release.

For more information on OLC awards, please visit:

About the E-Learning Consortium
The Online Learning Consortium (OLC) is a collaborative community of education leaders and innovators, dedicated to promoting quality digital teaching and learning experiences designed to reach and engage the modern learner – anyone, anywhere, anytime. The growing OLC community includes faculty members, administrators, trainers, instructional designers, and other learning professionals, as well as educational institutions, professional societies, and businesses. Visit for more information.

Media contact:
Dr. Jessica knott
AVP of Community Strategy, Experience and Management
[email protected]

SOURCE e-learning consortium

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