Plenary Speakers
 Plenary 1

JJ Walcutt and Lt. Nicholas Armendariz

Clay Strategic Designs and US Navy, United States

Nick Armendariz is an Aerospace Experimental Psychologist in the US Navy and serves as the Department Head of Operational Psychology at the Naval Aerospace Medical Institute. He is also a former Marine Electronic Countermeasures Officer in the EA-6B Prowler with over 1,000 flight hours and served as a Training and Education officer, rounding out his time in the Marine Corps at Training and Education Command.
His pursuits in improving the learning experience continue through the University of Central Florida, where he is ABD in the Modeling and Simulation Ph.D. program, where his focus has been cognitive science, specifically 4E cognition.

Photo_Aug_25_3_38_31_PM.jpgJJ Walcutt is a scientist and strategic designer of large-scale learning programs. Her current work focuses on optimizing human cognition and performance across a wide spectrum of of the training enterprise including neuro-informed military training, data-driven higher education planning, and talent development optimization.
Through varied service to the U.S. Government, she has led strategic design projects focused on optimizing USAF pilot readiness, modernizing learning across the US DoD, and expanding innovation across the US government. Dr. Walcutt has over 25 years of experience in research and development for training and education with specific interests in improving educational systems nationwide as well as internationally.

Learning Engineering in Military Aviation ADL Environments

Significant training challenges unique to military aviation exist including operational security (enemy observations during training), simulation concurrency, distributed network latency, data overload, pilot distribution, electromagnetic operational environment (EMOE) replication, threat prioritization, and decision- making complexity all while G-forces impact the body. Given all these parameters, the majority of future aviation fight training will be conducted in simulated environments with data crossing distributed pilot locations. To improve training in this specialized military discipline, a learning engineering approach to ADL training design is recommended.

The benefits of this multidisciplinary approach are many-fold but predominately center on the contributions of human factors psychology, neuroscience, and learning science. Combining the theories, research findings, and intervention outcomes from these areas of consideration results in several key recommendations including: (1) the use of real-time data monitoring and how to use this information to drive training and operational support, (2) the use of extended cognition support tools to help pilots operate more fluidly with their aircraft, and (3) using a building block approach to training modernization such as beginning with the use of micro-learning tools, light-weight simulators, and multi-national research sharing for multi-airframe combat training exercises. Accordingly, this presentation will discuss best practices in learning science that combine these interventions to optimize aviation training.

 Plenary 2

Mr. Martin Boult and Lt Col Dominic Wylie

New Zealand Defence Force

001B92B0-DEA1-4FBB-B3DC-481F14D7BBF3.pngMr Martin Boult Martin Boult is a Senior Learning Adviser in the New Zealand Army with 30 years of education practice across military, tertiary and secondary education.
His research interests include andragogy, learning engineering, and new social literacies for learning. He has Masters and Post-graduate qualifications in Design and Education (e-Learning).

Lt Col Dominic Wylie, DSD is an officer in the Royal New Zealand infantry Regiment. He is the co-lead of the NZ Army Beyond TEL-A project. Lt Col Wylie’s operational background includes command in East Timor, Afghanistan and Iraq as well as numerous Humanitarian and security assistance missions in the Pacific and South east Asia region. He is the recipient of the Distinguished Service Decoration for his work leading advice, assistance and support to the Afghan National Security Forces.

He is a graduate of the University of Canterbury (NZ) and received his Master’s degree  in Strategic Studies from the University of the US Marine Corps.

Modernising Learning in a Small Nation’s Army: Plans, Pedagogy and Partnerships

We are all too familiar with the inertia that exists within large organisations, especially when tasked with leading organisation change to learning practices, systems, environments and culture (mindset). The New Zealand Army commenced a journey to modernise its training system in 2019, using a series of ‘Battle labs’ to trial innovative approaches to learning methods, technologies and environments. In the post Covid-period (with challenges of staff attrition and skills shortages) this range of ‘learning experiments’ has been consolidated into a funded project team with a clear focus and the support of higher Command to sustain the modernisation journey. 

Utilising military planning tools in conjunction with best practice from academia, and partnerships with commercial contractors, the Beyond TEL-A* team is progressing their Lines of Effort and gaining organisation-wide support. 

This presentation will share lessons learned, and examples of project outcomes in order to exchange ideas and best practice with the NORDEFCO community and the ADL partnership.
*TEL-A: Technology Enhanced Learning-Army

 Plenary 3

Dr. Benjamin Goldberg, Ph.D.

U.S. Army DEVCOM Soldier Center, USA

ben_pic.jpgDr. Benjamin Goldberg is a Senior Scientist at the U.S. Army Combat Capability Development Center - Soldier Center in Orlando, FL. His research in Modeling & Simulation focuses on deliberate competency development, adaptive experiential learning in simulation-based environments, and how to leverage AI tools and methods to create personalized learning experiences. Currently, Dr. Goldberg is the technical lead on a research program developing adaptive training solutions in support of the Synthetic Training Environment and future Army learning concepts.

Dr. Goldberg is co-creator of the award winning Generalized Intelligent Framework for Tutoring (GIFT) and holds a PHD from the University of Central Florida.

STE Experiential Learning for Readiness (STEELR): Potential Application to NATO and Coalition Training

NORDEFCO participants have demonstrated considerable progress with operationally integrating eLearning into Computer Aided Exercises and extracting analytic insight on the relationships between pre-training, performance support, and human performance across exercise training objectives. However, most of this human performance data is based on the daily subjective scores of Observer Trainers. Collecting more objective human performance data directly from simulation environments remains notoriously challenging. 

The STE (Synthetic Training Environment) Experiential Learning for Readiness (STEEL-R) project addresses the challenge of gathering multi-modal data sources and translating them into actionable and objective measures of performance and effectiveness (Hernandez et al., 2022). These data-driven methods can then be used to monitor longitudinal training and performance across an ecosystem of integrated educational and training experiences. This has produced a common data interoperability layer that collects evidence through a competency-based experiential learning model based on skill acquisition theory and team dimensional training best practices. As a guiding use case, this program has established a learning model for tracking the skill improvement of US Army squads across live, semi-synthetic, and synthetic training experiences. 

The core technologies and data formats in STEEL-R are all open-source and open-standards compliant. The core data layer is built on the Experience Application Programming Interface (xAPI) and leverages the Generalized Intelligent Framework for Tutoring (GIFT) to manage individual and team level assessments during scenario execution (Goldberg et al., 2021). This provides a springboard for adoption of common data capture since the platform can interoperate with eLearning as described in NATO STANAG 2591. Beyond eLearning, STEEL-R has proven to work with additional common military training platforms (desktop based simulation, situational judgment training, and live training) and provides frameworks for further instrumenting existing and future training systems. This can create a true learning ecosystem where context, both in terms of the learning experience today, and the cultural, doctrinal, and tactical characteristics of Soldiers’ originating countries, can be captured and used to calculate proficiency in support of international military training.

This presentation will review the STEEL-R project, its approach both in learning and technology, and then explore how it can scale to support the missions and goals of NORDEFCO participants.

 Plenary 4

Senior Adviser
Ramin Darisiro

ramin.jpgSouth-Eastern Norway Regional Health Authority, Norway

Mr. Ramin Darisiro is a Special adviser at the South-Eastern Norway Regional Health Authority (Helse Sør-Øst RHF). He is educated engineer with pedagogical training and certified project manager (PRINSIX). He holds a Master of Management from Norwegian School of Business and Economy, BI. 

Ramin has more than 25 years of experience, working with pedagogue, technology, research, development, and project management in different sectors. Before his current position he worked as an educator and adviser in Bergen municipality (10 years), Norwegian Defense University College/ADL Office (>9 years) and Avinor (2 years).

Training digital skills and providing digital Resources for 90 000 employes

The balance between the younger and older part of the population is changing. We are becoming more elderly and fewer younger. This means an increased need for healthcare services in the coming years. It also means that we may face a situation with limited access to qualified healthcare professionals.  Increased use of digital services will increasingly require the healthcare professionals to work in teams and in new ways. Artificial intelligence and machine learning can provide new tools for decision support and new work processes in healthcare diagnostics and treatment.

We need digital skills in today's world because technology plays a significant role in various aspects of daily life and in the workplace. Having digital literacy and proficient use of technology can lead to greater opportunities, improved efficiency and productivity.

This presentation highlights the work we do for better basic digital skills in our organization.

 Plenary 5

Dr. Jennifer Solberg

Quantum Improvements Consulting, USA

Murphy_headshot.jpgJennifer Solberg, PhD, is the founder and CEO of Quantum Improvements Consulting (QIC), an Orlando-based firm specializing in the application of emerging technology to training for complex skills. A cognitive psychologist by trade, her work focuses on how to design, develop, implement, and evaluate training technology for the Department of Defense and other clients. At QIC, she leads a growing team of learning science professionals. In addition to her many peer-reviewed publications, her work has been featured in the New York Times, the Pentagon Channel, and Signal Magazine.

An Introduction to Modern Adaptive Learning Systems

Research shows that the ability to personalize content to the individual learner has benefits including better retention, reduction in the time to train and reduction in instructor workload. However, adaptive learning has yet to be widely implemented. Recent innovations in machine learning have reduced the burden of developing these technologies considerably. In this presentation, I will define the different methods that can be used to personalize learning, describe the components of an adaptive learning system, review the research about the effectiveness of different adaptive learning techniques, and discuss instructional design best practices for how to structure your content for an adaptive learning experience.

 Plenary 6

Tyshchenko1.jpgCol, PhD Maksym Tyshchenko

The National Defence University of Ukraine

His research and educational activities are focused on Advanced Distributed Learning implementation into the process of military education and training. He is a member of several international working groups dedicated to using information technologies in military education and training.
He is Director of the Ukrainian Partnership Centre of the Advanced Distributed Learning Partnership Network under the US government program Advanced Distributed Learning Initiative. He is the author of numerous publications on questions of information technologies and e-Learning.

Viktoriia-Krykun.jpgLtCol Viktoriia Krykun

The National Defence University of Ukraine

LtCol Viktoriia Krykun is a Chief of the Language Testing Division at the Foreign Languages Education and Research Centre of the National Defence University of Ukraine (NDUU) in Kyiv. She has nine years of experience of foreign language testing according to NATO STANAG 6001. In 2018 she defended the PhD thesis (in education) on the Ukrainian officers’ foreign languages competence formation using the blended learning technology. In 2020 graduated from the L-3 Joint Operations Staff Officers Training Course at the NDUU. In 2022 she got a scientific rank as a Senior Researcher in Education & Pedagogy. She is a member of the International Scientific Project “Computer Adaptive Language Testing – CALT” in the framework of the NATO DEEP. Professional interests: adaptive language testing & teaching blended learning technologies, cultural awareness issues in the military context.

VR for the officers' training

Today digital tools and technologies are becoming one of the most important and necessary component for the Ukrainian military officers’ training at the higher military educational institutions. Due to the wave of digitalization we must implement best practices through developing advanced courses using VR technologies to increase officers’ resilience during the combat actions.
With advances in science and technology, the VR course for the officers has been proposed to cope with the problems posed by the current war in Ukraine. We believe that some superior features of VR technologies are vital to provide a higher level of officers’ adaptability to combat circumstances.

 Plenary 7

Associate Professor
Stian Kjeksrud and Col. Petter Lindquist (r)

Norwegian Defence University College, Norway

Kjeksrud_jpg.jpgStian Kjeksrud is an Associate Professor at the Norwegian Defence University College/Command and Staff College, heading its research program on UN peace operations. He studies the role, utility, and limitations of force to protect civilians from violence in war. Currently, he is developing new EdTech-tools in Extended Reality to improve learning in higher military education. Before his academic career, Kjeksrud served as an officer and soldier in international operations, including Afghanistan, North Macedonia, Kosovo, and Lebanon, and worked as a police officer in Oslo.

Military Learning for the 21st Century: Leveraging Extended Reality to Prepare for the Defence of Europe

How can Extended Reality prepare military forces to better protect civilians in 21st century war? Although NATO is expected to prevail in any military confrontation with any adversary, it is less obvious how the alliance can protect civilian populations in wars of the 21st century. Contemporary war and conflict challenge our presumptions about the role of military forces in protecting Western societies and individuals from harm. NATO is already engaged in conflicts in non-military realms below the threshold of war, where peoples’ perceptions—rather than territory and armies—are the center of gravity. When such conflicts become shooting wars, individuals and communities suffer disproportionally from its violent consequences, both by deliberate targeting and collateral damage. While national defense remains the raison d’être for armed forces, contemporary conflict puts new demands on Western militaries to protect civilians from harm, above and below the threshold for war. This project transforms new knowledge about 21st century conflict into practical value for military planners. Understanding human security in war and conflict is challenging. It involves unfamiliar topics, complex legal aspects, rapid policy developments, and new doctrinal thinking. “Softer” aspects of force also contest existing paradigms on the role of force. We draw on cutting edge pedagogies and technologies to make such “troublesome knowledge” easier to learn. By developing educational programs in Extended Reality , planners and decision makers can learn complex topics faster, deeper, and better. Ultimately, the objective is to improve higher military education in Norway, NATO, and the UN, increasing the effects of military protection efforts.

 Plenary 8

Mr. Paul Jesukiewicz

U.S. Office of Personnel Management USALearning, USA

Paul_J_head_shot_bio_2.jpgMr. Jesukiewicz is a leader in the field of learning technologies with over 35 years of experience working in government, industry, and academia. He successfully led research, development, and implementation of a global program on advanced distributed learning. He was inducted into the Federal Government Distance Learning Association (FGDLA) Hall of Fame in 2012 as recognition for significant career accomplishments in promoting and developing distance learning in the Federal Government.

AI modeling and prediction tooling in the Learning Record Store (LRS)

The distance learning community continues to mature in its use of modern data capture technologies such as Experience API (xAPI), CMI5 and Activity Streams. This voluminous data hides important signals about student engagement, content effectiveness, and instructional techniques. Traditional data analysis techniques frequently fail to discover the subtle relationships between student interactions with content, educational outcomes, and on-the-job performance.

USALearning is developing a prototype Artificial Intelligence (AI) modeling and prediction tooling in the Learning Record Store (LRS). This tooling will provide a set of utilities to assemble training data, generate and train predictive AI models, and store, load, and execute those models over xAPI data resident in the LRS. This proposed presentation will demonstrate the AI tooling in the LRS.

 Plenary 9

Eleanor Wiklund and Elisabet Malvebo

Eleanor.jpgSwedish Naval Warfare Center, Sweden

Eleanor Wiklund (Petty Officer 1st class OR6), Simulations and Training Officer at the Swedish Naval Warfare Center.

Eleanor has a background in naval communications and COMSEC and was previously an instructor in said areas. Eleanor is involved with the technical development of new simulators and training facilities and has a special interest in further developing the Swedish Navy’s education and training in simulators and wargaming. 

20220318_174524.jpgElisabet Malvebo (Phil.Lic./M.A.), Educational developer at the Swedish Naval Warfare Center.

Elisabet has a special interest in development of learning spaces, didactics and methodology in professional education. Elisabet is co-author of the theoretical model of didactic spatial competence (DiSCo) and is a member of the board of the network for higher education pedagogy development Swednet.

Pedagogy in simulation-based teaching and learning – a developing area of competence

Sub-area: Designing and developing learning assets

The Swedish Armed Forces is in the midst of growth and the starting point for growth is to educate more conscripts, cadets and officers. The Swedish Navy possesses a large range of simulator-based facilities for education and training of both individuals and units. As well as seeing an increasing number of students, we also see increased interest and need in the use of these simulators for unit training, which puts pressure on instructor methodology and pedagogy. To be able to face this challenge two main questions arise: what further understanding of the use of simulations for professional learning would we need to explore and; what competence development would we need? In this presentation we put focus on pedagogy in simulator-based teaching and learning, and we will high-light areas of development in a pedagogic perspective*


 Plenary 10

Head of Busines development
Hans Lindgren

Saab AB, Sweden

Hans_serios.jpgPrior to working in Saab, Hans spent sixteen years in the Swedish Army serving as Company commander and on Brigade staff. He is a graduate of the Swedish National Defence College and has many years of experience in functions at Battalion and Brigade level as well as in Command & Control, Signals & Communication, fire support coordination and Intelligence (ISTAR). His staff appointments have largely been Infantry oriented within a Mechanized Infantry Brigade HQ and at the Swedish National Training Unit.

Hans joined Saab Training & Simulation in 2002 as a member of the Military Operational team developing concepts, advising on the use of simulation in training and delivering training courses for staff and customers. He developed this team worldwide before becoming responsible for Marketing within the Nordic Region in 2007. He was promoted to Head of Marketing & Sales in 2012 and are appointed as Head of Business development since August 2018.

A key component of this role is to create interoperability within simulation through standardisation and to ensure that users are well aware of the operational benefits that Saab offers with its training capabilities. Equally important is the focus is to fit the training solution to each customers need from gunnery skills all the way up to the strategic fit of training aids into the Doctrine and its alignment and support of Geo Political context and ambition.

Hans has experience of military training with more than 16 different nations’ officers and units in the use of simulation, among which are the US, UK, German, Swedish, Norwegian, Finnish and the Netherlands.

Hans is married to Eva-Maria, they have two sons, and lives just outside Jönköping in the southern part of Sweden. His spare time is mainly spent hunting and keeping fit. He enjoys spending time outdoors together with the family.

Training is The Operation

Simulation for Live Force on Force training have change in many perspectives over the last years.
Comming from solely a national interest to validate unit and commanders' actual level of readiness prior to operation and the readiness cycle itself.
 Today its a  tools used for basic training and learning in a multinational context with ambition to not just generate skills and efficiency in building experience.
Furthermore trining exercises in a multinational context  is today a tool for deterrence and therfore a political instrument
Msots soldiers and comanders will never experience a real operation, we need to foster a mentality to not just trin as we fight, we need to understand that what we do in peace time is to prepare our troops and units for operation.
A view on traing as one of the most important tasks need to be implemented in every emplyee in the armed forces.
They need to understand what training reasdy is.

In my presentation I would elaborate on the development of systems for Force on Force and what is today implemented in Norway Sweden Finnland & denmark and the technology behind it but as well how these tools today are distributed in order to be used on daily basis

A historical view, as we are in middle of a major change of the training doctrine for Force on Force training.

I will raise the question if we foster a mentality if we all are training ready hence Training is the operation because this is what really generate the will to learn.

 Plenary 11

Dr. Sae Schatz

Bedrock Learning, Inc., USA

Schatz_2021.pngSae works at the intersection of learning and development, technology, and data. She’s the co-founder and Chief Product Officer of Bedrock Learning, Inc, and from 2015 to 2022, she served as the director of the US Defense Department's Advanced Distributed Learning (ADL) program.

Lifelong Learning in an Information Overloaded World?

We’re constantly bombarded with information, overloaded with tasks, and inundated with mental noise. Our brains aren’t wired for it. Messages are lost. Work gets distracted. And we struggle to keep pace with the changing world. What's worse, as our organizations increasingly rely on lifelong learning, workforce upskilling, and just-in-time training, we risk creating cognitive biases in our team by adding ever-more (instructional) information into the mix. Learn about why information overload derails our brains, and walk away with some techniques for designing lifelong learning that cuts through that noise.


Keynote speakers: 45 mins.
Speakers (Auditorium): 30 mins.
Parallel sessions: 40 mins.
Workshops: 2x40 mins. or
Workshop: 90 mins.


Exhibition in every break