University of Wisconsin–Madison

Patti Sanchez to share potent communication tools at the Distance Teaching & Learning Conference

DT&L speaker Patti Sanchez

In her keynote for the Distance Teaching & Learning Conference, Patti Sanchez will show how storytelling and strategic communication can help educators drive people to action.

But what’s the connection to distance teaching and learning?

“Using persuasive communication tools can inspire educators to articulate their vision – whether it’s a massive education reform initiative, a new instructional technology platform or tool, or a new way to teach a particular subject – and figure out how to effectively communicate that vision to their stakeholders,” says Sanchez, the chief strategy officer of Duarte, Inc., and the coauthor of Illuminate: Ignite Change Through Speeches, Stories, and Symbols.

She believes that we all have the potential to change our organizations, industries, communities, and world. But she adds, “Some of the biggest, best, most world-changing ideas never see the light of day because they’re not communicated well.”

Sanchez will share communication techniques from the world’s greatest leaders at the Distance Teaching & Learning Conference, sponsored by the University of Wisconsin–Madison on Aug. 7-9. The conference features leading lights from academia, industry, and government, who will illuminate the latest learning strategies for online and distance education. It attracts more than 800 higher education faculty and staff, instructional designers, and workforce trainers in search of ways to engage students steeped in the internet and mobile technology.

storytelling graphic
Patti Sanchez will show DT&L Conference participants how to use storytelling to advance their ideas.

Stories connect and compel us

Sanchez believes strongly in the power of story.

“There’s a lot of talk about storytelling, but most people use it as a buzzword without knowing what it means or how to apply it,” she says. “By leveraging the power of specific storytelling principles, you can express your ideas in a way that resonates with your audiences and motivates them to spread your ideas.”

In “Using the Power of Story to Reach Distance Learners’ Hearts and Minds,” Sanchez will draw on research she conducted for Illuminate: Ignite Change Through Speeches, Stories, Ceremonies, and Symbols. She’ll share case studies and explain how the fundamentals of storytelling apply to many forms of communication. Attendees will learn to create captivating content and inspire others to support a vision for distance education.

Leaders of social change movements have long understood that persuasive stories help build support for new philosophies or practices, and the same is true of education movements. Sanchez cites the example of Maria Montessori, who regularly repeated the origin story of her educational system and used it to put the Montessori Method firmly on the map.

“Harnessing the power of persuasive communications, you too can transform hearts and minds and increase the impact that education has on the world,” Sanchez says.

A great slate of speakers

The 2018 Distance Teaching & Learning Conference held at the Monona Terrace Convention Center features more than a hundred sessions, ranging from gamification to alternative credentials to instructional design. Along with Sanchez, the keynote speakers are University of Regina professor of educational technology and media Alec Couros, who will discuss “Understanding the Digital Realities of Our Students”; and Susan Aldridge, president of Drexel University Online, who will talk about “Harnessing the Power of Technology to Enhance the Promise of Education.”

Learn more by visiting the Distance Teaching & Learning Conference website. Or contact conference director Wendy Fritz, wendy.fritz@wisc.edu, 608-265-2679, or conference manager Kimary Peterson, disted@dcs.wisc.edu, 608-265-4159.