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CLEAA Annual Conference 2018 Report

The CLEAA Conference (17-19 Oct 2018) is done and dusted for another year and by all accounts has delivered what it promised. Feedback has been overwhelmingly positive as the conference provided both practical and cutting-edge content together with a welcome opportunity to connect and network with others who have similar interests and role functions.


On Wednesday evening, early arrivals gathered for a relaxing welcome reception at the beautiful College of Law rooftop venue in Ann Street. As the sun set, the group enjoyed a wonderful selection of edible delights and mingled with fellow attendees from Singapore, New Zealand and of course closer to home.


Thursday morning started with a thought-provoking presentation by Dr Stephen Billett on learning through practice, followed by the hot topic of micro-credentialing covered by Dr Nick James. The group reconvened after morning tea for a refreshing “leadership conversation” with Dr Fran Finn who shared some helpful tools and tips on coaching in today’s world.

We were then joined by Jennifer Flynn from Alberta Canada, albeit virtually via video link, for a lively session on the competencies of professional development professionals. Ably facilitated by Jacqui Lynagh, the group collectively workshopped the ideal skillset for this group (note – the collected feedback will be made available to attendees shortly).

After lunch, Ben Richards treated us to a stellar presentation on the very subject of presenting, followed by a conversation on feedback and how best to handle this potentially fraught topic. The day closed with a timely Regulatory Wrap Up in the expert hands of Graham Jobling who brought us up to speed on emerging issues in each jurisdiction.

Those who attended the conference dinner at Blackbird Bar & Grill that evening enjoyed a feast of wonderful food and wine, coupled with great conversation. Local knowledge played a hand in the choice, of course!


Day two opened with the dynamic duo, Dr Chantal Morton and Natalie Wieland on learning styles, then Peter Cutforth brought us up to speed on the variety of apps and tools now available in the world of e-learning. After brunch and the AGM, Florence Thum explored curiosity and mental health, then the Cross-Profession panel took centre stage.

Professor Patrick Parkinson ensured that the last 60 minutes of the conference did not disappoint, drawing on a variety learning practices from a number of professions –Dr Shahina Braganza– medical, Andrew MacDonell –accounting and Xanthe Cushing – legal. All provided valuable insights into innovative teaching initiatives in their space.

All of this would not be possible without our generous venue hosts – a big shout-out to QLS for providing the conference venue and College of Law Queensland for the pre-conference reception. Finally, the biggest thank you must go to you, the conference attendees whose support and contributions ensures that CLEAA continues to survive and thrive!

As the feedback has been so good, we are already getting excited about next year! Get in early and mark your diary now – 17 and 18 October 2019 in Sydney!
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