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STEMxCON so far: WOW! - and 10 more hours to go!

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What a wonderful whirlwind! The STEMxCon non-stop online conference for STEM educators has been amazing/fascinating/exhausting/inspiring. If you haven’t dropped by for a live session yet, you have another 10 hours (closing keynote is 5pm Pacific today, 21 Sept) – or you can watch the recordings.


But I have to say, it’s the MOST fun when you can interact directly with these amazing educators. Here are my thoughts so far…




It’s like Face 2 Face


If you have the privilege of traveling to professional education conferences, you know that it can be a rich experience. Online events can’t (yet) replace all facets of being there in person, but some benefits of STEMxCON that are similar to a face to face event:


  • There are so many things going on in parallel that you can’t take it all in; the flip side – there’s something for everyone
  • You get to learn and be inspired
  • You can “chat” with the person “sitting next to you”; interacting with attendees adds a marvelous richness to the experience (it’s not just about what the speaker has to say)


It’s not like Face 2 Face


Beyond the obvious fact that an online event is online, this type of “massively open online conference” has some other interesting characteristics. Yes, it’s free – including no lodging, no travel expenses (beyond what you would have spent today anyway) – but there’s more to it than that:


  • Everyone has a front row seat
  • You can ask questions during the talk without interrupting the flow – and most of them get answered!
  • No spontaneous “side bar” discussions over coffee – so we’ll just have to do that in Facebook!
  • If you miss something, you can catch the recording
  • I suspect there isn’t an on-ground conference on the planet last year or next year where ALL of these people are gathering – it’s simply too diverse and too expensive. So it has been a rare moment to hear from a marvelously diverse set of perspectives. There’s something for everyone.


Come see for yourself! It’s not too late – visit the program schedule timezone converter first to generate a schedule of events in your local time. Then click on each event to learn more – and find the link to join live.





If you want to hear a talk but the time doesn’t work for your schedule, see the Recordings Page which is sorted by the last name of the speaker. For example, you can listen to Ramsey Musallam, a high school chemistry teacher and one of our keynote presenters, describe how he “flips” his classroom. It’s not what you think! Watch his recorded talk, Explore-Flip-Apply: A Pedagogy First Approach to Reverse Instruction, and be inspired!


I hope to “see” you…









Jim Vanides, B.S.M.E, M.Ed.
Global Education Program Manager
Sustainability & Social Innovation

Follow me on Twitter @jgvanides


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About the Author
  • Jim Vanides is responsible for the vision, strategy, design, and implementation of education technology innovation initiatives. His focus is the effective use of technology to create powerful learning experiences that help students around the world succeed. He has been instrumental in launching over 1200 primary, secondary, and higher education projects in 41 countries, including the HP Catalyst Initiative - a 15-country network of 60+ education organizations exploring innovations in STEM(+) learning and teaching. In addition to his work at HP, Jim teaches an online course for Montana State University on the Science of Sound, a masters-level, conceptual physics course for teachers in grades 5 through 8. Jim’s past work at HP has included engineering design, engineering management, and program management in R&D, Manufacturing, and Business Development. He holds a BS in Engineering and a MA in Education, both from Stanford University.
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