Conference Chair Message
On behalf of the eLearning Conference Organizing Team, it gives me great pleasure to welcome you all to the 5th Annual Conference on e-Learning Excellence in the Middle East, that will be held in Dubai, in the context of the second Hamdan Bin Mohammed e-University Annual Congress 2012, under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and President of HBMeU.
The theme of the 2012 e-Learning Conference, “Sustainable Innovation in Education”, will focus mainly on innovative and creative approaches for capacity-building, using all technologies available to improve blended learning and make it more effective.
Thomas Edison said : "There's a way to do it better—find it." This is what innovation and creativity are about. Creativity is an important aspect of human activity, emphasizing the functions of construction, generation and creation, as opposed to simple comparison, reproduction, assimilation and copying, at the root of any routine activity. While motives, goals and operations form part of all kinds of activity, innovation and creative activity has the ambition to generate new goals, new motives and new operations.
The importance given to creative ability is increasing with the emergence of knowledge communities and societies, whose new way of looking at value creation depends on their ability to create wealth by fostering innovation, creativity and entrepreneurship.
Answers to these challenges for developing leadership, communication, innovation and collaboration are not found in the cartesian rational, logical, and scientific. Although human activity is creative by nature, its ability to exceed and transcend given constraints is not encouraged in traditional teaching and learning systems. As pointed out by the psychologist Dr Vera John-Steiner in her famous book on creative collaboration (2006):
« In today’s information, technological and innovation driven society, creativity has become more of a necessity for psychological health and life success. It can no longer be viewed as a luxury or marginal to ‘the good life’; it is essential to society’s ability to develop and work under conditions of fast-paced change. Societies have become more global and people must learn to interact with a diversity of others. Creativity and development are both objective and subjective processes, involving not only shared, public meanings and objects, but also personal experiences and transformations. »
The conference will be the opportunity for those engaged in triggering and managing educational changes, innovation, and excellence in education and e-learning to share their experiences and practices in the following areas and subthemes of the Conference:
- Advances in Creative and Innovative Learning and Teaching;
- Open Educational Resources for Innovative Online Learning;
- Innovative Learning Environments;
- Pedagogical approaches fostering creativity and innovation;
- Empowering learners’ creativity
- Policies and Strategies for sustainable educational innovation.
The excellent conference program of the 5th Annual Conference on e-Learning Excellence in the Middle East owes to many contributors, who invested their time and expertise in preparing the event. On behalf of the organizing committee, I would like to thank all team members for their hard work. On a personal note, I would also like to thank our colleagues of the technical committee for their support, advices and camaraderie.
We invite you to take an active role in this conference by presenting your work, participating in the discussions, or simply honoring us with your presence. We wish you a fruitful and enjoyable time at the 2012 Conference on e-Learning Excellence in the Middle-East.
Prof Alain Senteni,
5th eLearning Conference Chair
Dean of the School of e-Education
Hamdan Bin Mohammed e-University
Earn 10 Continuing Medical Education (CME) Credit Hours for the 4th e-Health and Environment Conference 2012. Credit Hours are approved by the UAE Ministry of Health for attendance in the plenary sessions, papers sessions and discussion forums.