Desire2Learn recognizes Harvard Business School, Westside High School, the University of Guelph and Elgin Community College as inspiring users who have demonstrated innovation, collaboration and impact in their learning communities and supported the broad
Desire2Learn Incorporated (“Desire2Learn”), a leading provider of enterprise teaching and learning platforms, honored the winners of its 2011 Desire2EXCEL Awards program during FUSION 2011. The award program encourages development and sharing of best practices using Desire2Learn® Learning Suite. The awards recognize users of Desire2Learn products who have demonstrated leadership, teamwork, originality and influence in the education community.
Four awards in the categories of Innovation, Collaboration, Impact, and Joint Research and Development Collaboration, were handed out at the Desire2EXCEL Award Presentations held during FUSION 2011, ELEVATE, the Eighth Annual Desire2Learn Users’ Conference, in Denver, Colorado July 11 – 15, 2011. The award winners are chosen from a list of nominees and finalists by a selection committee consisting of a cross-section of Desire2Learn platform users.
Jennifer Douglass, Westside High School, won the Desire2EXCEL Innovation Award for Blended Learning in a Flipped Chemistry Classroom. Douglass set out to ease the students’ transition from high school to university by putting students in charge of their learning online. Her use of hybrid learning in a K-12 setting represents the innovative spirit which the Desire2EXCEL Awards seek to capture. Douglass enabled students to create their own videos and share them in Desire2Learn, heightening student interest and investment in their work.
“One of the toughest parts of teaching is delivering material to a group of individuals who likely operate at different levels of understanding,” wrote the Desire2EXCEL Selection Committee. “Jennifer’s innovative, interactive class recognizes the need for differentiated instruction by putting students in charge of pacing their learning.”
Tim Moore, Elgin Community College, was presented with the Desire2EXCEL Collaboration Award for Integration of Student Support Services into Desire2Learn Platform. Moore’s use of the Desire2Learn platform to provide a One-Stop Student Support Services Shop demanded extensive cross-campus collaboration. Moore harnessed the Desire2Learn platform to house a variety of student services under one virtual roof, including student support and library assistance.
“This project means students are more likely to seek out and benefit from student services,” remarked members of the committee. “When services are easy to access and help is readily available, more of students’ valuable time is freed for study. Tim’s project represents an incredible commitment to students, validation that colleges and universities care about making services accountable and accessible.”
Kyle Mackie, Richard Gorrie, Jason Thompson and Janet Wolstenholme, University of Guelph, won the Desire2EXCEL Impact Award for eP Week at the University of Guelph. eP Week brings many individuals together to share ideas and use what they’ve learned at their institutions following the virtual conference. With multiple institutions participating, users are able to share innovative ideas amongst themselves. The event harnesses the potential of Desire2Learn ePortfolio to act as an unprecedented platform for innovation and collaboration.
“The impact of this ePortfolio event is significant,” noted the selection committee. “The week involves administration, faculty, institutional designers, technologists and community members. It fosters sharing and discussions, training and excitement among participants, who range from experienced innovators to those seeking to learn more.”
“The commitment that our users bring to empowering their students’ lives through education continues to inspire us to deliver the best possible tools for teaching and learning,” stated John Baker, President & CEO, Desire2Learn. “All of those who are recognized in the Desire2EXCEL program, as nominees or winners, are educators who go beyond the daily call of duty to inspire their students to reach farther and dream bigger. In this spirit of excellence, we sincerely congratulate all of the Desire2EXCEL award winners and nominees for the determination they continue to demonstrate in their pursuit of education.”
Harvard Business School was the inaugural recipient of the newly introduced, Desire2EXCEL Joint Research & Development Collaboration Award. This award recognizes the outstanding contributions of an individual or organization for joint research and development with Desire2Learn that in turn makes the outcomes available to the broader Desire2Learn community.
For 2011, new applications for Desire2Learn Learning Environment were developed that will have a major impact on teaching and learningThe voting for this award was conducted by senior Research and Development as well as Services Team Members of Desire2Learn.
“We are honored to be the recipient of this inaugural award,” said Stephen Laster, CIO, Harvard Business School. “We think that, as a community, we can keep this environment strong and healthy serving all our learners and faculty for many years to come.”
Baker added, “We’ve had many great joint R&D relationships with clients over the years that have contributed tremendously to the organization and to the industry as a whole. We look forward to many more such dynamic partnerships in the future as together we strive to improve educational opportunities for all.”