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Sept. 25, 2017

UA to Host Nation's Thought Leaders in Online Learning

TUCSON, Ariz. — The University of Arizona is one of five institutions selected by the Online Learning Consortium to imagine the future of online education and examine the challenges and impact of digital learning in higher education.

Sept. 27-29, the UA will bring leaders in online education to campus for a day of discussion, debate, and ideation. The conference will focus on four emerging trends shaping online learning:

  • Virtual and augmented reality
  • Gameful learning
  • Access to education
  • Education in 2027

"When we set out to build UA Online, we knew we had to build a model that was different than our peers and part of a much larger enrollment management strategy," said Dr. Vincent J. Del Casino Jr., vice president of Academic Initiatives & Student Success. "We have embraced the accelerating hybridization of digital and in-person learning and are excited to host nationally-recognized experts who share that ethos and will help the UA envision the future."

Since its debut in fall 2015, UA Online has experienced very rapid growth with enrollment expected to exceed 3,000 this fall across its 80-plus undergraduate and graduate programs. Much of that growth can be attributed to the addition of fully online undergraduate programs and innovative degree paths including the General Education Academy and Science Academy.

"In under three years, UA Online has become a leader in the online space and an important new model for what a digital university can be," said Melissa Vito, senior vice president of Student Affairs, Enrollment Management & Strategic Initiatives. "We are constantly scanning the environment for new ideas and opportunities to provide our suite of educational experiences to students across the state and the world, and this conference represents an important investment in that ongoing innovation."

On the night of Sept. 28, the UA will kick off the festivities with its very first Tech Crawl. Sponsored by Adobe, the Tech Crawl will include participants from the Office of Digital Learning, University Libraries, UA Office of Student Engagement and Career Development, iSchool, UA South, SBS, UITS, UA College of Education and Pima Community College showcasing campus technologies that support digital learning in the online, hybrid and face-to-face classroom including:

  • Adobe Spark
  • Virtual and Augmented Reality
  • Kahoot!
  • Makerspaces
  • Slack
  • Video Production and Green Screens
  • Playposit
  • OneNote for Classrooms

Those interested in registration and speaker information can visit the conference website at:


Media contact:
David Miller
Student Affairs & Enrollment Management
Academic Initiatives & Student Success

Established in 1885, the University of Arizona, the state's super land-grant university with two medical schools, produces graduates who are real-world ready through its 100% Engagement initiative. Recognized as a global leader and ranked 16th for the employability of its graduates, the UA is also a leader in research, bringing more than $606 million in research investment each year, and ranking 21st among all public universities. The UA is advancing the frontiers of interdisciplinary scholarship and entrepreneurial partnerships, and is a member of the Association of American Universities, the 62 leading public and private research universities. It benefits the state with an estimated economic impact of $8.3 billion annually.