Louise Ohashi is a CALL/MALL enthusiast who has taught English in a wide range of contexts in Japan and abroad. She is currently an Associate Professor at Meiji University and teaches Self-Directed Learning at Gakushuin University. Her doctoral work and much of her other research focuses on learner motivation, learner autonomy, and the use of digital technology for language teaching and learning. She has held various volunteer positions within JALT and worked on conference teams for JALTCALL as well as JALT’s annual international conference. This year she is JALT2020’s Conference Co-Chair, which will be JALT’s first international online conference. Big challenges ahead! Twitter @OhashiLou
JALTCALL2020 was the first major JALT conference ever to be held online. It was recognized as a huge success, bringing together almost 100 presenters and attendees from over 60 countries. Participants talked of the event being ‘historically important’ in the way it brought people together in a time of crisis. Yet the transition online was organized in barely two months. The conference team was faced with many challenges, such as building this online system, organising how presenters share their work, ensuring attendees could navigate the online schedule, managing registration/ticketing, hosting online rooms, communicating with their presenters, and creating opportunities for social interaction. They also needed to consider live and asynchronous options and how to share recordings with a wider audience post-conference. During this forum, three members of the JALTCALL2020 team will discuss how it became our SIG’s first completely online conference and how it can be replicated - indeed PanSIG2020 itself was planned using the same online system and framework. Whether you are planning a weekend webinar of your own or a conference with hundreds of attendees, this talk gives you a practical framework to make your own event a success.
Some closing comments about PanSIG2020 and looking forward to the next time we get together.