Events don’t need to be either in-person or online only anymore with virtual reality.
Remember the good old days when your team got to go to conferences in cool locations? (I don't either.)
Would you like to attend a virtual conference but are afraid that you would miss the camaraderie of a face-to-face (F2F) conference? Are you secretly curious about virtual conferences but feel like they just don’t count because they are…well, virtual?
Have you attended a virtual conference that just felt like a long Webinar with talking heads? Attending a virtual conference is much like attending a F2F conference but without the headaches of traveling.
At the FantasTech Virtual Conference, participants mill about, attend presentations, ask questions of presenters, talk with fellow attendees in common areas, and visit exhibits. Represented by a stylishly dressed avatar.
Miss a live event? No problem with that - sessions are recorded and archived for later viewing.
Remnants of FantasTech’s beginnings as the Reynolds Community College Virtual Conference are barely visible and the 2016 conference attracted 312 registrants representing 32 states, Puerto Rico, and two Canadian provinces. For the past 3 years, the conference has been a collaborative effort among a small planning group of dedicated learning technology professionals in the U.S. Reynolds Community College continues to provide considerable infrastructure and financial support.
Virtual conferences offer analytics that cannot be gathered accurately in a physical event. You can see, for example, how many attendees watched each session, which virtual booths they visited, what resources they downloaded, and with whom they spoke. These data have enabled the planning committee to make reasoned decisions about keynote speakers, session organization, and vendor exhibiting.
Virtual conferences are a great networking and learning experience for audiences attending them. They are actually fun and engaging, and are environmentally friendly. Participant comments are particularly descriptive:
• "This was the best yet. The presenters and keynotes were great."
• "I enjoyed meeting new people. There seemed to be a different atmosphere of "friendship" this year."
• "The conference was smoothly run, diverse, and replete with useful ideas about student learning and technology integration."
• "I LOVE this conference. I am amazed at how it has evolved over the past few years."
Check out the 2016 conference highlights at:http://www.reynolds.edu/fantastech/
(scroll down the page for links to archives)