Facilitators FAQs

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Thank you very much for volunteering to facilitate sessions at the UnConference.

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Time : 40 mins

There are 4 stream session slots of 40- mins each. Each session slot has 3 concurrent sessions i.e total 12 stream sessions on the day. The sequence may change a bit as we confirm the program.

What will a session look like?

While the suggested session structure is given below, session facilitators are free to use their own structure/ agenda as long as it adds value and encourages discussion.

  1. Make opening remarks and your point of view (POV) about the topic. This your own POV which can be evidence based or based on your experience.
  2. Talk about current issues, advances and trends. A bit of research specially on current trends is recommended as the audience will be knowledgeable. This can be in the form of handouts or simply reading out information you have collected.
  3. Open and facilitate a discussion on the “big questions” on the topic. Please develop your own “big questions” for your session.
  4. When you near the end of allocated time – summarise the discussion.

What does session content look like? 

Sample Session Topic – Serious Games for Serious Learning?

Session Overview

Serious Games and Business Simulations are now considered as an effective and engaging means to deliver learning. Serious Games have been successful in primary and secondary school education (e.g www.mathletics.com.au ) and to some extent in healthcare education. However, it has struggled to gain mainstream acceptance in workplace learning due to various reasons including its legacy in gaming and the complexity involved in its design and development. This is changing as GenX and Millennials become a large proportion of the workforce. Will the L&D community take it seriously?

Session Lead  Jeevan Joshi

Point of ViewI had the pleasure of experience the exuberance and the pains of designing and implementing for learning.  I recently conducted a 2-day experiential learning workshop for CFOs which used a sophisticated business simulation. The participants were really enjoyed playing the simulation. However, the effort required by me (trainer) was considerable as it increases complexity and costs. I do think it was the worth the effort.

Big Questions

  • Are serious games ready for adoption in mainstream learning? Or is it a lot of hype?
  • Is the L&D community ready for it?
  • How do L&D conquer the complexity involved in designing and using serious games?
  • How is your organisation using or planning to use serious games?

Your session content will be added to the UnConference workbook.

How long will a session be for?

A session will last about 30 minutes. We recommend the flow:

  • 5 mins for 1&2 (opening remarks and your POV)
  • 20 mins for discussion and conclusion
  • 5 mins for summary and conclusion

Are there any guidelines for participants?

  • Participate in the discussion at the UnConference sessions.
  • We will have a room full of very experienced practitioners, who may have a lot to share than the time permits. The session facilitators will politely pull in line if you are taking more than your fair share of talking time. The idea is not to impress others but make relevant contribution to the discussions. Remember – 100% discussion and no sales messages.
  • Use this workbook to make notes. After the workshop, feel free leave any comments on the UnConference website https://learningcafe.com.au/events/

What is the role of the stream leads?

There is one lead for each stream. Stream Leads define the overall vision for the stream. Stream Leads are Learning Professionals with considerable experience in management, design and delivery and have a passion for their theme. Stream leads usually have a chat with you (phone or coffee catch up) about your session to make sure that it falls within scope and overall direction. When you are facilitating the session, the Stream Leads will be there to help you.

What preparation is required? What do I need to do?

You can decide how much effort you want to put in. We recommend some preparation but not a whole lot as the discussion may go down unplanned and unanticipated paths.

  • Choose or confirm your discussion topic by Jan 19, Monday.
  • Please send me the 5 -6 “big questions” you want to discuss in your session by 2 Feb, Monday, so that they can be compiled in the workbook. The emphasis is on the practicalities/ cutting though the hype/ why is not happening. You can download the template here. You can view workbooks from the last UnConference here.
  • There may be content available on your topic. Please check here http://www.learningcafe.com. au/tag/webinar-discussion/ . Please feel free to give me a call if you need any help.
    Send me your brief Point of View so that participants are aware where you stand or lean.
  • Send me your photo. If you facilitated last year or were on the panel for a Learning Cafe webinar we have your photo. The photo will be used in the workshop workbook and on the web site.

What presentation aids will be available?

We are back to basics. White board, markers, flipchart will be available. All participants are given a hard copy of the UnConference workbook which will contain your session content.

Do I need to get stressed about anything?

Not really as it is a fairly safe environment and a gathering of peers who are practitioners. The stream leads will be at hand to help you during your session. Session facilitators will provide a framework for discussion and guide the discussion. Session facilitators will be knowledgeable enough about the topic (at least on the day) but don’t have to be experts on the topics.


[toggle title=”Learning Labs – Crowdsourced Case Studies”]

Learning Labs essentially comprises of organisations talking about substantial business issues in learning and crowd-source solutions from participants.

Time: 45 mins

We are hoping that presenters can walk away with some ideas, suggestions and hopefully even solutions that they can implement in their organisations.

  • The ideas, suggestions and solutions should be grounded in the realities of organisational constraints such as limited resources, workload pressures and existing capabilities.
  • Please note that if your suggestion does not fit into the context or will not work, the facilitator can move to the next suggestion.
  • Please avoid suggesting specific offerings from vendors.

[toggle title=”Immersion Labs – Mini Workshops”]

Immersion Labs are a “hands-on” exploration of some of the newer tools available to us. 

Time: 50 mins

  • It is OK if you don’t understand all of what is going on or don’t “get it”. The idea is to get a taste so that you can explore in more detail, in your own time.
  • You can participate using your own laptop or tablet or you may choose to watch someone else sitting close to you or to form a group. Internet connectivity is provided however the speed may vary.


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  • Before conference – To have a chat about content
  • During conference – Will be present during your session to help with the discussion if need. But also be the common thread across all sessions in the stream.


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  • The schedule is very tight so please keep to schedule (in the workbook). UnConferences moves at a fast pace and there always less time than required, so please keep the discussion moving.
  • This is very much a discussion based event so please use your facilitators hat. Usually, there are at least 4 – 5 (or more) knowledgeable people is each session so an active discussion can be kept going.
  • Try and drive to a conclusion but only if appropriate and if there is enough time. The discussion is key.
  • Each room will have a flip board and markers. Projector and computer are also available in case you need it. Please get a USB drive or we will have a couple of spares. Please make a note of 3 take aways from your session so that they can be written on a post-it and put up in the common area. This can be done after you have finished your session.
  • Each of the participants also belongs to a topic team which is indicated on the name tags. So there will be 6 – 7 people in your topic/theme (except Learning Labs). This is to merely to act as an ice breaker/ discussion topic when people network.
  • We do have a mobile app available. It will be actively used in the collaborative solutioning.
  • Event coordinator will be available to need help. I will be around too.