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IUPUI hosts 2012 National Learning Communities Conference


November 9, 2012

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Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis is hosting the 17th annual National Learning Communities Conference through Saturday at the University Place Conference Center and Hotel on the IUPUI campus.

Almost 300 representatives from colleges and universities across the country are attending more than 70 workshops on learning communities topics during the conference, which opened Thursday. Learning communities are generally defined as two or more linked academic courses that incorporate integrative learning and are offered in partnership with academic and student affairs.

Conference attendees are learning about new ideas and innovations in learning communities, as well as best practices for established programs. Conference tracks include presentations on themed learning communities, learning communities administration, at-risk students, research, professional development, first-year students, innovation and creativity, integrative assignments and technology.

Emily Lardner and Gillies Malnarich are keynote speakers for Saturday’s 8:30 a.m. session. Lardner and Malnarich are co-directors of the National Summer Institute on Learning Communities and the Washington Center for Improving the Quality of Undergraduate Education. They have co-authored three articles, which have appeared in Change and Forbes magazines, that highlighted a shift in learning community practice that occurred under their stewardship.

Joye Hardiman was today’s keynote speaker. Hardiman is a founding faculty member of the Institute for Cultural Reconnection, an international site-based learning academy dedicated to capacity building and technical assistance for people of African descent. Hardiman has served as a core facilitator for the Ford Foundation Cultural Pluralism Summer Institutes.

For more information, contact Harriett Bennett at 317-274-5036 or email