Sessions
Keynote Sessions
Discover the trending topics the Core 4 Keynote speakers will be discussing in San Antonio, Texas.
Creating Community in Uncertain Times
After two years of turning our personal living spaces into our professional working environments, how do we re-enter workspaces together? Rather than attempting to go back to “business as usual,” what if we used this moment in time to reset our culture? It is more important to ask, “How do we bring out our best selves to support each other?” rather than “Who is in person on what day?”

As talent development professionals, we play a key role in setting the conditions for participation and inclusion, and we have the freedom to tap into our full potential to create these conditions. We will push the pause button during this keynote address and reflect on our facilitation and leadership style—how do we contribute to or take away from inclusive, high-performing cultures of belonging? How might we create the conditions to elevate unique perspectives, level power differences, and create safe spaces for meaningful conversations? You will learn practical steps to create communities of belonging—even amid uncertainty.

Keynote Speaker: Tiffany Quivers
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Cultivating Authentic Connection
Connection isn’t passive; it requires intention and action. Join this keynote address for an interactive experience to gain tools to build authentic connections and grow your unique strengths, while actively creating an environment where collaboration, trust, and respect can thrive. You will experience the value of embracing each other’s differences and relying on shared experiences to help create a community that demonstrates the power of “I’ve got your back.”

With simple “rules of the game” that allow participants to feel inspired and empowered through healthy, collective competition, you will receive a roadmap to help teammates to successfully partner together while sustaining community and connection across all roles and levels of your organization.

Keynote Speaker: Blair Bloomston
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Unlock and Amplify: Unleashing Talent and Potential in a Dynamic World
What is going on at work? A recent survey found that 25 percent of American workers started a new job within the last year. And of those same people, 40 percent were already looking for another job. Why? Well, the usual suspects—pay, leadership, toxic work environment—still play a role in this new work era we’ve entered, but so does another persistent and important theme—opportunity. People want a chance to move forward, grow, and feel like their talent has a chance to be utilized and their potential to be realized. And, as talent development professionals, you play a huge role in helping people get there.

In this keynote address, you learn about a model that can help create a culture of innovation and engagement by unleashing the talent and resources already available to produce that next great opportunity. You’ll learn actionable strategies for unleashing that talent, and you’ll also have a great experience along the way. Prepare to learn, have fun, be involved, and maybe even showcase your talent on stage.

Keynote Speaker: Rick Lozano
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Instructional Design Sessions
Instructional design focuses on designing better training programs that improve performances.
Learning Cluster Design: The New L&D Model Driving Digital Age Leadership
Speaker: Sarah Cannistra, Learning Cluster Design Group

Track: Instructional Design

Focus Area: Train-the-Trainer

Target Audience: Director/Manager,Instructional Designer

Session Description: The L&D industry has undeniably been struggling to meet modern learning needs. Usually, L&D designs one learning asset for a given problem. However, leading organizations like Visa and Pepsi use the learning cluster design model: a rigorous approach to surround learners with a set of learning assets across the flow of work, empowering behavior change. This session will walk you through how a learning cluster design model approach could help your organization.

Applications on the Job:
  • Compare and contrast the implications of your current approach to the learning cluster design model approach.
  • Reconstruct your internal process and strategy for designing learning.
  • Recommit to solving modern L&D challenges and investing in building L&D capability for your team.
Learning Experience Design: Designing for Users and Impact
Speaker: Cara North, Circulo Health

Track: Instructional Design

Focus Area: Developing Content and Materials

Target Audience: Instructional Designer,New Practitioner

Session Description: How do you take a training request from start to finish to create a powerful learning experience? Join this session to explore methods such as Cathy Moore’s action mapping, conducting a task analysis, scenario development, and cross walking the experience to a key performance indicator (KPI) at your organization.

Applications on the Job:
  • Conduct effective task analyses.
  • Create meaningful learning experiences that focus on action instead of content.
  • Design and evaluate learning experiences.
Leave No Learner Behind
Speaker: Diane Elkins, Artisan E-Learning and E-Learning Uncovered

Track: Instructional Design

Focus Area: Accessibility

Target Audience: All TD Professionals,Instructional Designer

Session Description: Diversity. Inclusion. Unconscious bias. Privilege. When people hear these words, they might think of race, gender, or socioeconomic status. But what about ability? E-learning designers and developers who want to provide equitable access to professional development opportunities must consider assumptions and decisions that have an impact on individuals with disabilities.
In this session, you’ll explore the decisions you make that can either put up or take down barriers. You’ll learn to assess audience members, visuals, mechanics, and language. You’ll walk away with new perspectives about the decisions and assumptions you might be making and learn how to pivot to create more inclusive, accessible offerings.

Applications on the Job:
  • Identify technology and design choices that might create a barrier to individuals with disabilities.
  • Adjust instructional design practices to be more inclusive.
  • Adjust technology decisions to be more inclusive.
Making Microlearning Work in Your Organization
Speaker: Robyn Defelice, Grandmasters

Track: Instructional Design

Focus Area: Microlearning

Target Audience: Instructional Designer,Internal Practitioner

Session Description: Get ready to move toward organizational microlearning. You will gain a baseline understanding of microlearning as a concept, method, and product during this hands-on session. Using a scenario, we will work through building a microlearning campaign to augment a current curriculum.

Applications on the Job:
  • Identify opportunities to incorporate microlearning.
  • Determine a microlearning campaign and its products.
  • Outline a microlearning product in a microlearning map to design and develop it.
Story Design: A Foundationally Human Approach to Instruction
Speaker: Rance Greene, needastory.com

Track: Instructional Design

Focus Area: Experiential Learning

Target Audience: Instructional Designer,New Practitioner

Session Description: Analyze. Design. Develop. Implement. Evaluate. The tried-and-proven method of instructional design serves us well. But the science of our craft can often overshadow the fact that we need to speak our learners’ language. Stories make content memorable and actionable. They connect to our audience emotionally. Story design uses the familiar process of instructional design to develop stories that train.

Applications on the Job:
  • Unearth stories during analysis.
  • Design relatable characters and strong conflict.
  • Produce stories using tools you already own.
Training Delivery and Facilitation Sessions
Training delivery and facilitation focuses on developing and delivering events that engage learners.
All Sizzle, No Fizzle: How to Deliver Blazing-Hot Presentations
Speaker: Bridgett McGowen, BMcTALKS

Track: Training Delivery and Facilitation

Focus: Presentation Skills

Target Audience: All TD Professionals, Facilitator/Trainer

Session Description: How do you quickly grab your audience’s attention regardless of your presentation topic? How do you engage audiences without the bells and whistles? How can you consistently be seen as an expert when you speak? In this high-energy session, get answers for how to end the fizzle and bring the sizzle!

Applications on the Job:
  • Explore what you must do to get busy adults to listen to you throughout a presentation.
  • Discover how to powerfully establish your credibility regardless of your expertise.
  • Understand how to meaningfully engage audience members, maximize learning, and improve their overall effectiveness as a presenter or trainer.
Facilitator Skills for Modern Classrooms: Mastering Hybrid and Virtual Training
Speaker: Cindy Huggett, Cindy Huggett Consulting, LLC

Track: Training Delivery & Facilitation

Focus Area: Hybrid Facilitation

Target Audience: All TD Professionals, Facilitator/Trainer

Session Description: The virtual classroom has rapidly evolved with new features and new expectations. Remote attendees want interaction and engagement, and hybrid audiences want to be included. As a facilitator, have you adapted your mindset, toolset, and skill set to meet these new expectations? Are you using modern techniques to connect with today’s audiences? In this session, you will discover the new “learning experience facilitator” role. You will learn how to capture and keep hybrid and remote audiences’ attention through meaningful engagement. You’ll also learn the three types of collaboration and how to use them effectively. You’ll walk away from this session with tools you can immediately apply to your next online class!

Applications on the Job:
  • Identify unique features of modern virtual and hybrid classrooms.
  • Manage robust virtual discussions that include both in-person and remote attendees.
  • Use new virtual tools such as augmented reality, next-generation polling, and immersive whiteboards.
Going Slide-Less
Speaker: Cornelius Dowdell, The Nelius Strategy LC

Track: Training Delivery & Facilitation

Focus Area: Facilitation

Target Audience: Facilitator/Trainer,Instructional Designer

Session Description:PowerPoint presentations aren’t as powerful as you think. Trainers and facilitators aren’t the only ones who are tired of boring slide decks; participants are, too. Join this session to learn alternate approaches you can take to freshen up your PowerPoints.

Applications on the Job:
  • Gain more engagement and experiential learning for the facilitator and the participants.
  • Embrace technology tools and resources in hybrid work environments, which is more relevant today than ever before.
  • Leverage the power of interactivity across all mediums.

Hybrid Training: The Pillars of Successful Live Mixed Learning
Speaker: Diana L. Howles, Howles Associates

Track: Training Delivery & Facilitation

Sub-Track: Hybrid Facilitation

Attendee Level: Beginner (Attendee has little to no experience in this subject matter)

Session Description: As a result of the pandemic, most organizations pivoted from traditional in-person training to fully virtual training programs for employees. As workers return to their pre-pandemic workspaces, hybrid training (where online and on-location participants share a concurrent learning space) is rising in popularity by necessity. Training programs that accommodate workers regardless of whether they’re on-site or online are needed. This session will identify and explore the foundational pillars that support successful hybrid training. Walk away with practical ideas to execute within each pillar to support effective hybrid training.

Applications on the Job:
  • Tackle the prep and technology troubleshooting to clear the way for successful hybrid learning.
  • Identify the technical and design challenges for crafting equitable learning experiences regardless of location.
  • Learn and be able to apply key recommendations for facilitating successful hybrid learning experiences.
Irresistible Virtual Training
Speaker: Kassy LaBorie, Kassy LaBorie Consulting, LLC

Track: Training Delivery & Facilitation

Focus Area: Virtual Classroom

Target Audience: All TD Professionals,Facilitator/Trainer

Session Description: Learning online is now commonplace. Unfortunately, engaging attendees to participate, come on camera, and unmute can be like herding cats. Establishing a comfortable, safe, and technically sound online learning environment is essential. Meaningful and relevant activities are the secret. Like tasty treats and fresh catnip, attendees will be unable to resist actively participating in your virtual training when you use these three learning activities and a “never fail” debrief strategy to involve them! Invite participants to take charge of their learning and experience virtual training like they’ve never seen before.

Applications on the Job:
  • Implement three ready-to-use engaging virtual learning activities.
  • Use one “never fail” debrief strategy to reflect on, validate, and encourage learning.
  • Create unforgettable virtual learning experiences.

L&D’s Role in Cultivating Racial Equity in the Workplace
Speaker: Jessica Jackson, TorranceLearning; Megan Torrance, TorranceLearning

Track: Training Delivery & Facilitation

Focus Area: Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI)

Target Audience: All TD Professionals,Director/Manager

Session Description: How do we in the learning and development (L&D) world, including those who hold privileged identities and those who don’t, connect meaningfully to conversations about racial equity, process our feelings and perceptions, and design learning experiences that are equitable? During this session, you’ll learn L&D’s role in cultivating racial equity. Walk away with key resources and actions to explore personal socialization and subsequent bias and how to discuss the intersection of race and other social identities. Access tools to help you assess if structures, processes, and social interactions are equitable, and discover how to make impactful antiracist decisions that make your training and learning solutions more equitable.

Applications on the Job:
  • Discuss the intersection of race and other social identities to address inequity across other aspects of marginalization (gender, sexual orientation, disability, ethnicity).
  • Assess if structures, processes, and social interactions are equitable.
  • Make impactful antiracist decisions that ensure your training and learning solutions are more equitable.
Evaluating Impact Sessions
Evaluating impact focuses on evaluating the impact of your solutions.
Beyond Level 2: Designing Impactful Learning Programs With Evaluation in Mind
Speaker: Kristopher Newbauer, Rotary International

Track: Evaluating Impact

Focus Area: Evaluating Learning Impact

Target Audience: All TD Professionals,Instructional Designer

Session Description: Too often, evaluation is an end-of-process step at best or ignored at worst. Knowing the desired outcomes and impact from training is critical to inform more meaningful instructional design. Join this session to learn how to approach instructional design from an evaluation perspective and gain a model for designing more impactful programs by starting with the evaluation in mind. This knowledge will give you greater credibility, demonstrating the value you provide to the business leaders you support. This is a practical application session, so bring a learning program you are in the process of designing, will be designing, or think will be needed in the future.

Applications on the Job:
  • Use evaluation tools to inform instructional design strategies.
  • Create learning activities that are linked to the desired impact.
  • Deliver an evaluation plan with every instructional design package.
Content Knowledge or Deduction Skills: Creating Measurable Assessments
Speaker: Cara North, Circulo Health

Track: Evaluating Impact

Focus Area: Evaluating Learning Impact

Target Audience: Instructional Designer,New Practitioner

Session Description: If someone completes a learning experience, can you say they now know the information? Many learning experiences use assessment techniques such as multiple-choice test questions or scenarios to assess the user’s content knowledge; however, these types of assessments are often flawed. Ineffective assessments can also lead to confusion for on-the-job performance and leave organizational leadership wanting more robust data to rate learning experience effectiveness. In this session, you will explore common assessment writing mistakes and discover how to improve assessment writing through test-writing best practices and using performance-focused task analysis for creating measurable assessments.

Applications on the Job:
  • Identify common assessment-writing pitfalls and how to avoid them.
  • Navigate the consequences of relying on poorly written assessment items.
  • Learn how to conduct a task analysis and its usefulness for writing measurable assessments.
Demonstrating the Impact and ROI of Learning and Talent Development
Speaker: Patti Phillips, ROI Institute, Inc.

Track: Evaluating Impact

Focus Area: ROI

Target Audience: Director/Manager,Internal Practitioner

Session Description: Organizational leaders need to perceive learning and talent development as an investment, not a cost. If leaders see these programs as a cost, they will control them, reduce them, or eliminate them. However, if leaders view these programs as an investment, they will maintain, enhance, and protect the budget. Are you prepared to show how your learning and talent development programs deliver business value? This session will show you how to measure and improve investments in learning and talent development programs and people at all levels of evaluation, including return on investment (ROI). It will emphasize what organizational leaders (the funders) want to see and how to credibly communicate the results to key stakeholders.

Applications on the Job:
  • Describe the framework used to demonstrate the value that matters, including ROI.
  • Use the alignment model to position programs for success.
  • Identify methods and techniques that make ROI work.
First Things First: How to Design and Evaluate Training That Works
Speaker: Gerald Jones, Kirkpatrick Partners

Track: Evaluating Impact

Focus Area: Evaluating Learning Impact

Target Audience: All TD Professionals,New Practitioner

Session Description: How do you know if your training really works? This question puzzles new and experienced training professionals worldwide. Despite best efforts to evaluate the effectiveness of training, what often occurs are smile sheets, pre- and post-tests, and hoping for the best. In this session, you will learn simple techniques to connect training and evaluation to improve on-the-job performance and business results. You will learn how to get to Kirkpatrick Levels 3 and 4 for any training program. You will leave with a sample evaluation form and tips to implement each of the four levels of evaluation into your programs.

Applications on the Job:
  • Increase on-the-job application.
  • Maximize results from training programs.
  • Learn simple methods for evaluating training programs.
Identifying and Meeting Needs and Measuring Their Impact
Speaker: Kristopher Newbauer, Rotary International

Track: Evaluating Impact

Focus Area: Evaluation Metrics–What to Measure

Target Audience: All TD Professionals,Instructional Designer

Session Description: This session focuses on getting needs assessments right. Examine how you can identify and translate business needs into talent development initiatives that add value.

Applications on the Job:
  • Identify and translate business needs into talent development initiatives that add value.
  • Create evaluation plans for talent development initiatives to demonstrate value.
  • Propose talent development initiatives to address business needs.
Know Your Value: How to Measure the Outcomes and Impact of Learning
Speaker: Alaina Szlachta, By Design Development Solutions

Track: Evaluating Impact

Focus Area: Evaluating Learning Impact

Target Audience: All TD Professionals, Instructional Designer, Leader, New Practitioner

Session Description: For more than 60 years, robust resources have been available to measure the results and impact of learning, but even the most talented learning professionals have difficulty quantifying the results of their learning programs. In this session, the speaker will share key findings from her recent learning measurement study, including interviews with 40 L&D leaders around the world. Her study bridged the gap between what is possible and common in the knowledge sector. Get inspired to rethink how to measure the impact of learning in your organization.

Applications on the Job:
  • Clarify how learning can positively influence business objectives.
  • Explore why we struggle to tell our learning value story and how to overcome common challenges.
  • Discover strategies to improve your current learning management approach.
Learning Technologies Sessions
Learning Technologies focus on creating engaging eLearning experiences.
Agile’s Insights for L&D—LLAMA!
Speaker: Megan Torrance, TorranceLearning

Track: Learning Technologies

Focus Area: LMS/LXPs/Platforms

Target Audience: Director/Manager,Instructional Designer

Session Description: The software industry is embracing Agile project management, and we in the learning and development field can learn a lot from it. Whether you’re using SAM, LLAMA, Scrum, or still exploring your options, Agile teams can teach us how to manage our relationships and communications with the business to deliver our work on time, in budget, and in line with expectations—even as those expectations evolve throughout the project. During this session, explore how Agile methods can work (with modifications) to design learning experiences that adapt to the ever-changing organizations and learners we support.

Applications on the Job:
  • Build a case for using Agile methods (instead of ADDIE).
  • Relate Agile values and principles to your work in learning and development.
  • Identify mindset and technique changes to begin using Agile methods today.
Amazing Apps to Create, Imagine, and Collaborate
Speaker: Nick Floro, Sealworks Interactive Studios

Track: Learning Technologies

Focus Area: E-Learning and Digital Design

Target Audience: All TD Professionals,Instructional Designer

Session Description: Discover amazing ways to use your phone or tablet to brainstorm, sketch, take notes, collaborate, create audio- and video-based media, and animate using several mind-blowing apps. You’ll leave feeling inspired with practical information to apply immediately. You’ll learn about more than 50 apps and services that can help you collaborate with teams, get creative, prototype, manage, and develop the next generation of learning experiences.

Applications on the Job:
  • Explore new apps and tools to spark creativity on your next project.
  • Use new tools, Miro and FigJam, to collaborate, gather feedback, and work with teams and audiences.
  • Walk away with practical tools, examples, and templates to adapt for your process and workflow.
Getting Smart About AI: What You Need to Know About AI and Talent Development Today
Speaker: Margie Meacham, Learningtogo

Track: Learning Technologies

Focus Area: Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning

Target Audience: All TD Professionals,Executives

Session Description: For most organizations, it is no longer a question of if but when AI will become part of their talent development strategy. During this interactive session, explore practical examples of AI in use today to spark ideas for your own organization. You’ll also come away with tools to help you identify AI opportunities, evaluate vendors, and prepare for the AI-enabled workforce that is already here. Join this session for a chance to win a signed copy of Margie Meacham’s book, AI in Talent
Development: Capitalize on the AI Revolution to Transform the Way You Work, Learn, and Live.

Applications on the Job:
  • Work with business stakeholders to define goals and metrics for AI applications in talent development.
  • Evaluate the benefits of hiring an AI vendor versus building a solution in-house.
  • Start a project plan for your first (or next) AI-enabled solution.
Getting Started With Augmented Reality
Speakers: Betty Dannewitz, ifyouaskbetty, and Destery Hildenbrand, Motive.io

Track: Learning Technologies

Focus Area: Augmented Reality/Virtual Reality

Target Audience: All TD Professionals, Instructional Designer

Session Description: Augmented reality (AR) is a fantastic technology, and integrating it into your work is easier than ever before. This session will break down each step involved in an AR project, including ideation, storyboarding, development, and deployment. You’ll learn about successful use cases and discuss what sets AR apart from other tools, where it works best to implement, and the steps needed to get started. You and your team will uncover how to use your existing L&D skills and the adjustments required to implement effective and impactful AR experiences. Walk away with a high-level understanding of AR and how to create an immersive learning experience to share with the world.

Applications on the Job:
  • Leave knowing what you need to do to ideate, storyboard, develop, and deploy your next AR project.
  • Experience successful AR in L&D use cases.
  • Discover AR’s uniqueness to determine the best way to implement it and the steps to get you started.
Podcasting in Your Learning Solutions
Speaker: Betty Dannewitz, ifyouaskbetty LLC

Track: Learning Technologies

Focus Area: Podcasts

Target Audience: All TD Professionals,Decision Maker

Session Description: Love podcasts? Thinking of starting a podcast for your organization? Podcasting is an accepted and easy way to provide and consume content, largely because it is a format that easily fits into our busy lives. Organizations are adopting podcasts every day to disseminate and deliver important information to their employees.

Applications on the Job:
  • Explore the value podcasting can bring to your organization.
  • Discover a step-by-step strategy to implement podcasting in your learning solutions.
  • Leave with the steps needed to begin podcasting immediately.
Virtual Reality in Learning: What You Need to Know to Get Started
Speaker: Destery Hildenbrand, Motive.io

Track: Learning Technologies

Focus Area: Augmented Reality/Virtual Reality

Target Audience: All TD Professionals,Instructional Designer

Session Description: Virtual Reality (VR) is a fully immersive simulation that provides hands-on training to users anytime and anywhere. Learning experiences in an immersive environment are scientifically proven to be more memorable and provide consistency across teams in your organization. VR training is scalable, including multiple learners across multiple locations, making it efficient to deliver consistent training. VR enables learners to practice skills and activities that might be dangerous or costly to recreate in a training format. Join this session to take a deep dive into what virtual reality is, explore training-centered VR examples, discuss where VR fits in an L&D strategy, and discover the steps you need to take to get started today.

Applications on the Job:
  • Explore the concepts, terminology, and processes you need to develop VR learning experiences.
  • Learn where and how virtual reality fits within the learning and development plan.
  • Discover the tools and skills necessary to develop and deliver virtual reality learning experiences.

Why Most E-Learning Fails: How to Design E-Learning That Gets Results
Speaker: Tim Slade, The eLearning Designer's Academy

Track: Learning Technologies

Focus Area: E-Learning and Digital Design

Target Audience: Instructional Designer,New Practitioner

Session Description: Let’s admit it: Most e-learning just plain sucks! The sad reality is that most e-learning courses require learners to sit through a disappointing experience, where information is poorly organized, the content isn’t relevant, and the interactions seem contrived and without purpose. This is compounded when the slideshow-like presentation is interrupted with several badly written quiz questions and cheesy animations to make it seem fun. In this session, you will explore some reasons why most e-learning fails and the components that contribute to bad e-learning design and a bad learning experience. Finally, this session will walk you through several practical methods you can immediately apply to improve your current e-learning.

Applications on the Job:
  • Understand when it’s the right time to use e-learning.
  • Learn why clicking doesn’t make interactivity meaningful.
  • Discover techniques other than instructional design to enhance your e-learning.