Conference background

The theme and the priorities of the conference reflect the conceptual principles underlying the modernization of education and the reform of the educational systems in European countries, as well as national development strategies for the XXI century. One of the European Union’s key educational objectives is the provision of equal opportunities for all with regard to access to learning and knowledge, regardless of gender, fi nancial and physical ability, and place of residence. That is why, distance learning has now been granted a status of high priority. If introduced on a wide scale, distance learning and teaching may make significant contribution towards the achievement of educational goals in member states.

The Faculty of Ethnology and Sciences of Education at the University of Silesia, Poland has extensive experience in the implementation of distance learning in other departments across the university. The Faculty’s Distance Learning Platform operates smoothly and continues to expand. The conference is designed to bring together all those involved in e-learning – university students, faculty staff, and educators – to explore and share experiences with e-learning and distance learning, both at home and abroad. The partners and the co-organizers of the previous editions conference 2009–2013 includes the University of Ostrava (Czech Republic), Matej Bel University in Banská Bystrica (Slovak Republic), Silesian University in Opava (Czech Republic), Constantine the Philosopher University in Nitra (Slovakia), which are also involved in many activities in the field of e-learning and ICT in frame in particular a together project E-learning as a road to communicating in the multicultural environment, supported by International Visegrad Fund (IVF). Among our participants also were a researchers and scientists from diff erent countries.

Strengthening and widening international cooperation resulted  a starting a next international scientific project IRNet International Research Network for study and development of new tools and methods for advanced pedagogical science in the field of ICT instruments, e-learning and intercultural competences (www.irnet.us.edu.pl), Project financed by the European Commission under the 7th Framework Programme, within the Marie Curie Actions International Research Staff Ex-change Scheme (2014–2017) with participating 10 Universities from 9 countries: University of Silesia in Katowice (US), Poland, (Coordinator), University of Twente (UT, The Netherlands), University of Extremadura (UEx, Spain), Constantine the Philosopher University in Nitra (UKF, Slovakia), Lisbon Lusíada University (LU, Portugal), University of Ostrava (OU, Czech Republic), Curtin University in Perth (CU, Australia), Borys Grinchenko Kyiv University (BGKU, Ukraine), Dniprodzerzhinsk State Technical University (DSTU, Ukraine), Herzen State Pedagogical University of Russia, St. Petersburg (HSPU, Russian Federation). And because 10th Annual Conference DLCC2018 will be organized with support a lot of partners universities from West, Central, East Europe, Australia and of course with participation participants from different countries.

 The theme of the conference is:

"E-learning and Smart Learning Environment for Preparing the Specialists of New Generation".

Ecosociety, the knowledge society, the digital society are transforming into an intelligent society. It is built on "smart" work, which is done by "intelligent" government and business representatives, based on "intelligent" infrastructure and "intelligent" citizens, playing a key role in creating intelligent culture. In addition, the priority is the development of such industries as smart transport, smart health, smart energy, smart food, etc., which will eventually lead to the creation of a smart world. SMARTs will play a special role in the preparation of new-generation specialists, in which e-learning and personalized learning will have priority positions.
In an intelligent society, technologies, previously based on information and knowledge, are transformed into technologies based on interaction, cooperation, exchange of experiences - smart technologies.
Citizens, new generation specialists, turn their activities into "intelligent" and implement innovative changes in management strategies. This means that society needs more creative and open thinking, so that human dignity, based on flexibility and originality, is a priority. The most important issue is the training of staff with creative, creative potential, able to work and think in the new world. (Smyrnova–Trybulska, E. (2018). Technologie informacyjno-komunikacyjne i e-learning we współczesnej edukacji [Information and communication technologies and e-learning in modern education]. Katowice: Wydawnictwo Uniwersytetu Śląskiego. 572 s. ISSN 0208-6336 ISBN 978-83-226-3070-9 (print version) ISBN 978-83-226-3071-6 (digital version).

The conference topics include the following thematic sections:

1. E-ducational environment and Cyberspace

  • E-ducational environment of the University.
  • SMART-Universities
  • SMART Technology in education
  • E-learning in a sustainable society,
  • Internet of things

2. Effective development of teachers' skills in the area of ICT and e-learning

  • Computer training for prospective and practicing teachers in the area ICT and e-learning,
  • Teachers’ and learners’ competences in distance learning and computer science.
  • Distance Learning and Lifelong Learning
  • Self-learning based on Internet technology

3. E-learning and Intercultural Competences Development in Different Countries:

  • Legal, social, human, scientific, technical aspects of distance learning and e-learning in different countries,
  • Psychological and ethical aspects of distance learning and e-learning in different countries,
  • Collaborative learning in e-learning,

4. E-learning Methodology – Implementation and Evaluation:

  • European and national standards of e-learning quality evaluation,
  • Evaluation of synchronous and asynchronous teaching and learning, methodology and good examples,
  • MOOCs – methodology of design, conducting, implementation and evaluation,
  • Contemporary trends in world education – globalization, internationalization, mobility.

5. ICT Tools – Effective Use in Education:

  • Selected Web 2.0 and Web 3.0 technology,
  • LMS, CMS, VSCR, SSA, CSA,
  • Cloud computing environment, social media,
  • Multimedia resources and didactic materials, Video-tutorial design.

6. Theoretical, Methodological Aspects of Distance Learning:

  • Successful examples of e-learning,
  • Distance learning in humanities and science,
  • Quality of teaching, training programs and assessment,
  • E-learning for the disabled.

7. E-learning in the Development of Key Competences:

  • Key competences in the knowledge society,
  • Use of e-learning in improving the level of students’ key competences,

8. Alternative Methods, Forms and Techniques in Distance Learning:

  • simulations, models in distance learning,
  • networking,
  • distance learning systems,
  • m-learning.