I’m coming back from nearly two weeks on the road from two quite enjoyable conventions.
ATD Pre-conference Certification
First, I went to Washington DC for ATD 2019 and spent three days completing the in person Instructional Design Certification. While I’ve been involved in elearning for over a decade, it has always been from a software support and SME perspective.
While topics like competencies and learning objectives are things I talk about every day, I didn’t have a background in doing the design work. How do you choose an instructional method? Do we need training or is there another way to solve an issue? I’d been thinking about instructional design for as long as I’ve been in this area, but finally took the opportunity for professional development. It was worth the extra travel time and cost to learn what I was missing, even things as simple as how to connect assessments back to learning objectives. I have a two inch thick participant guide to dig into as well, filled with resources to help me on my way.
One of my classmates created this great infographic of the concepts we discussed.
I took a one day break between class and the conference to catch up on email and hang out with my partner who was also in DC to write a book. There is some gorgeous architecture in DC.
ATD Conference and Expo
On Monday, the conference started proper. I didn’t get to the keynote speeches from Oprah and Seth Godin, but I heard generally good things.
Most of my time was spent on the Expo floor talking to folks about Totara and seeing great presentations from our partners expanding on what they’ve done with Totara and add-one they’ve created. Hurray for open source!
Being in the capitol meant I was able to connect with a good number of our subscribers from the East Coast, which is always quite sweet as I’ve worked with some folks remotely as learners in the Totara Academy for 5+ years and finally met them face to face for the first time.
Conference time also means getting to connect with coworkers who I talk to daily or maybe weekly on video chat, but only see once or twice a year as I’m a remote worker. I forget how energized I feel when I’m with my colleagues sharing ideas and chatting through problems.
After the Expo on Wednesday, my partner and I flew back to Minneapolis with time to unpack, do laundry, and pack back up for WisCon, a feminist sci-fi convention in Madison, WI.
WisCon is a family friendly con and I spent the bulk of my time hanging out with our eight year old during swimming time, liquid nitrogen ice cream making, a late evening dessert extravaganza, and going to bed at a very reasonable hour.
We even made it to a couple of panels including a great one on Superpowers found in nature.
Now that we’re headed home, I’m looking forward to putting my new ID tools to use and reading some great sci fi.
The guests of honor this year were Charlie Jane Anders and G. Willow Wilson. Go read all of the things, including Ms. Marvel which will soon be transitioning to last year’s guest of honor, Saladin Ahmed.