LINC 2019:Editor's Preface

This publication includes the proceedings of the MIT LINC Conference’s eighth meeting, held at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) from June 18-20, 2019.

LINC was established in 2002 as a consortium of researchers and practitioners focused primarily on technology-enabled learning, later shifting to a bi-annual conference format. 2019 represented another shift in LINC’s direction: while it still touched on technology-enabled learning, the LINC Program Committee recognized the need to expand its focus to include everyone in "the new learning society," necessarily incorporating a broader set of developments related to learning, including artificial intelligence, digital learning, and brain and cognitive science. 2019 also saw the MIT Abdul Latif Jameel World Education Lab (J-WEL) organize the conference for the first time. 

Thus, LINC 2019’s theme was "How to Thrive in a New Learning Society." Emerging over the past decade, this new "learning society" is comprised of a generation of mobile and diverse learners, all with disparate levels of educational preparation, motivation, and interest. These learners include traditional students, disrupted learners such as the 68.5 million people forcibly displaced worldwide, and the 262 million children and youth across the globe who do not go to school. This generation also includes workers who need to adapt to recent and forthcoming changes in the labor market. These learners are part of what we view as the "new learning society." Accordingly, the conference focused on areas relevant throughout the lifespan of this new generation of learners, from pK-12 education to higher education and workforce learning. 

The event began on June 17 with pre-conference workshops, including "Engaging Digital Learning Experiences," hosted by MITx, which allowed digital learning practitioners to share their work and network with peers from other institutions and countries; "MIT BLOSSOMS," which introduced BLOSSOMS’ international repository of free, online active learning video lessons for high school STEM classes; and Dr. Glenda Stump’s workshop, "Active Learning: From Principles to Practice," which covered how best to implement active learning in teaching. 

The main program featured three plenary sessions and five panels, as well as a poster session and 23 paper presentations. Speakers and panelists included Keynote Dr. Rebecca Winthrop, Director of the Center for Universal Education and Senior Fellow of Global Economy and Development at the Brookings Institution; Dr. Byron D. Clift Breland, Jeff Dieffenbach, Dana Doyle, Lisa Eichel, Damian Ewens, Robert D. Fadel, Dr. Jennifer French, Farnaz Haghseta, Dr. Sherif Halawa, Stacy Hawthorne, Dr. M. S. Vijay Kumar, Dr. Richard Larson, Dr. Naveed Malik, Sara Monteabaro, Elizabeth Murray, Professor Christine Ortiz, Professor Krishna Rajagopal, Dr. Richard Rowe, J. Philipp Schmidt, Dr. Peter Senge, Dr. David Soo, Dr. Venkat Srinivasan, Dr. Glenda Stump, Dr. DeLaina Tonks, Dr. Zaini Ujang, Dr. Claudia Urrea, Dr. George Westerman, Dr. Mary Ellen Wiltrout, and Portia Wu. Videos of select plenary sessions and panels can be viewed in the J-WEL library: 

LINC received over 150 paper submissions from 54 countries on topics such as disruptive education, refugee learning, accessibility in education, and workforce skills. 33 papers were accepted for publication in the proceedings with authors from 27 countries, including Albania, Argentina, Australia, Bolivia, Brazil, China, Ecuador, Germany, Ghana, Hungary, India, Italy, Jordan, Kenya, Mexico, the Netherlands, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, Russia, Singapore, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey, the United Kingdom, the United States, and Uruguay. 

We would like to thank the members of the Program Committee from MIT Open Learning who helped review the papers, offered valuable insight, and guided the development of the program.  

Claudia Urrea, PhD
Senior Associate Director for pK-12
Abdul Latif Jameel World Education Lab
January 15, 2020
Cambridge, MA