Learner Engagement
AECT Board Representative

Danilo M. Baylen
University of West Georgia

Thank you for the opportunity to be considered as the next Learner Engagement Division (LED)  Representative to the AECT Board.

Educational Background and Leadership Experience

I am an education professor of instructional technology, media, and design who focuses his scholarly writings on technology integration practices, visual and media literacy strategies, and blended and online course design and pedagogies in the United States and international contexts. Currently, I work in the College of Education at the University of West Georgia. My educational background includes a doctorate in instructional technology. I also have a master's degree in counseling (student development in higher education track) from Northern Illinois University and graduate degrees in library and information studies (University of Alabama) and elementary education (Florida Gulf Coast University). I completed a graduate certificate program in children's literature (Pennsylvania State University) and an undergraduate degree in economics from the University of the Philippines.

Before coming to the University of West Georgia, I held various roles as the Educational Technology Assistant Professor and Instructional Designer (Florida Gulf Coast University), Instructional Design and Development Coordinator (Ohio State University Mansfield), and IT Services Director (University of Akron). I also worked in different capacities as an analyst, specialist, educator, and consultant for the government, universities, and non-profit agencies in the Philippines, Hong Kong, Thailand, and Cambodia.

Further, I held various leadership roles at my university. I served as chair of department-, college- and university-level committees focused on technology, diversity, job search, tenure, and promotion. Beyond my university service, I assumed leadership roles in several professional organizations, such as AECT (Executive Secretary to the Board and International Division President); International Visual Literacy Association (Vice President and Board of Director); Georgia Association for Instructional Technology (President).

I participated in several professional boards, including Southern Regional Faculty & Instructional Development Consortium (SRFIDC) and the Teaching, Colleges & Communities (TCC) Online Conference. Also, I served as editor of IVLA's The Book of Selected Readings (2017-2020); co-editor of Social Studies Research & Practice (2009-2011), and a member of editorial boards (i.e., TechTreds, Quarterly Review of Distance Education, To Improve the Academy).

Experience with AECT

I joined AECT as a graduate student in the mid-1990s. My first experience with the organization involved serving as the Strohbehn Intern at the 1996 convention. My early years with AECT were productive as it became my professional home. The AECT Foundation nurtured my career goals with the Mentor Endowment Fund Scholarship (1997) and Professional Development award (1998). These recognitions partly fueled my continuous engagement that led to serving twice as chair of the Crystal Awards (DDL). I chaired and participated in other division committees involving awards (CLT, International Division, and OTP) and proposal review and session facilitation with these roles. Since 2016, I have served as the convention planner for IVLA, an affiliate organization of AECT.

For three years (2014-2016), I served in leadership roles as the International Division's president-elect, president, and immediate past president. I served as one of the mentors for the Symposium on Mentoring Early Career Faculty and Advanced Doctoral Students (2018, 2019, 2021) sponsored by the Research and Theory Division.

The International Division had recognized my work and contribution to the ICT field, especially in international contexts with the Presidentís Service Recognition (2015), International Contribution (2016), and Distinguished International Service awards. In 2016, AECT presented the James W. Brown Publication award to the Essentials of Teaching and Integrating Visual and Media Literacy, a book I co-edited with a colleague. Further, IVLA recognized my professional contribution to the field of visual literacy with three awards: Distinguished Service (2019), Research (2018), and Education (2015). Finally, I received the 2018 Juanita Skelton Award for Distinguished Service (Public Education) and 2019 Distinguished Service (Organizational Development) from GAIT.

Why the Learner Engagement Division?

I have been an AECT member for almost 25 years with varied experiences from several divisions --- OTP, DDL, and the International Division. I continue my engagement with others such as CLT, RTD, and IVLA on specific tasks and roles: reviewer, mentor, and affiliate program planner. Finally, I occupy a seat in the TechTrends editorial board as an at-large member and recently completed a special section of an issue as a guest co-editor.

Reflecting on my future involvement with AECT, I plan to contribute to LED in multiple ways, starting with sharing perspectives on leadership, insights on program development, and best practices focusing on member development. Also, becoming part of the division and its activities brings me full circle, given my initial work on computer-mediated communication, especially on interactivity as a core component of designing online learning experiences.

As AECT Board Representative for the Learner Engagement Division

My experiences with the AECT Board and the Executive Committee as Executive Secretary and the International Division as a member of its past leadership teams (2014-2016) provide a strong understanding of advocacy for LED members' needs. Also, my research and professional activities in developing 21st-century skills (specifically on communication, collaboration, creativity, and critical thinking) in U.S. and international contexts (i.e., Southeast Asia) give more insights on the issues and challenges of facilitating engagement and interactivity amidst the rapid changes in technology-rich landscapes.

At this time, I believe that I am well-prepared to represent the Learner Engagement Division in the AECT Board. I genuinely think that I am an asset to the Division in meeting the role expectations, especially managing various stakeholders. The time has come to serve in a new capacity for the  LED board and membership. After years of observing and nurturing various AECT activities, connecting with different stakeholders, and performing multiple division, committee, and task force roles, I look forward to serving the next LED Representative to the AECT Board.

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