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Facilitating HeLF Meeting

June 10, 2016 Leave a comment

The 38th Heads of E-Learning Forum (HeLF) meeting was held at the University of Birmingham on 9th June, 2016. It was the first HeLF event I have organised as a new member of the HeLF Steering Group.

strategy

The focus of the meeting was Enabling Strategic Change and it included a panel discussion on TEL strategies, groups discussions on policies and frameworks, as well as 5 short presentations. There are resources from the meeting on the HeLF  website.  I was really pleased with how it went on the day and particularly with the large number of people I managed to encourage to present and facilitate sessions – 14 in total. So many thanks to Mark Gamble, Fiona Strawbridge, Chris Turnock, Peter Bryant, Stella Ekebuisi, Catherine Naamani, Sue Gill, Brian Irwin, Uwe Richter, Alicia Mcconnell, Sarah Hayes, Sarah Davies, Rob Howe, and Amber Thomas, for making it a successful day.

At the end of the meeting we started looking forward to next year with a brainstorming session for 2016-17.

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Introduction to Learning Analytics

March 27, 2016 Leave a comment

Dashboards, metrics and interventions, my overview of Learning Analytics presented at UWL’s Academic Partnerships Conference.

I presented this on March 17th 2016 at the annual UWL conference for staff from our Partner institutions. As expected there was a lively discussion when we got on to the issues and challenges section of the presentation.

An Overview of Learning Analytics

analyticsprezi

Click image to view presentation (new window)

I ended my presentation with a summary of the recommendations from the Higher Education Commission’s January 2016 From Bricks to Clicks report. There are 12 recommendations in total. These are the  five I highlighted:

  • Consider introducing LAs driven by improvement of L&T processes & student engagement
  • Support LAs with clear codes of practice including fully informed consent
  • Review internal data management. Ensure data is fit-for-purpose
  • Ensure digital literacy, capability and data management are integral to overall strategic plan
  • Consider use of LAs in TEF submissions

Re-invigorating Module Evaluation

January 27, 2016 Leave a comment

A presentation on improvements to the module evaluation process at UWL given at the AUA The Higher Education Course and Module Evaluation Conference at Oxford Brookes University.

I co-presented at the The Higher Education Course and Module Evaluation Conference  with Helen Carmichael & Matt Grange on the work we had done to re-invigorate the module evaluation process at UWL.

Horizon Scanning @ Herts

May 9, 2014 3 comments

My keynote & highlights from the 2014 University of Hertfordshire Teaching & Learning Conference.

I was delighted to be invited to speak at Hertfordshire’s conference on Learning & Teaching Innovations. For my keynote I was asked to look forward and outline the likely impact of technology on the HE learning landscape in the next 5-10 years. Crystal Ball stuff. More of that in a moment.

Photo: Crystal Ball

Super Bowl Sunday Crystal Ball by Iris Shreve Garrot on Flickr (BY-NC-SA)

It was an excellent conference, and I have to say (sorry City, sorry LSE) easily the best university Teaching & Learning Conference I have attended. It was well-attended, almost 300 staff I believe, but what really stood out was the enthusiasm for teaching and for TEL. This came out in both the presentations and the discussions.

The day included 4 parallel sessions under the banner “Something to Share…”. I attended the TEL themed one and I think the format worked really well. There were 5 x 5-minute talks followed by 30-mins discussion. We used to run termly ‘show-&-share’ sessions at LSE and I’m a fan of this format but what worked well at Herts was the facilitated discussion afterwards rather than Q&A as we went along. We’re planning to introduce © ‘Show-&-TEL’ here at UWL  and I think we’ll try this format.

In a similar vein my favourite session was one on the use of Pecha Kucha for assessment. I’ve written about Pecha Kucha before but this was the first time I’ve seen it used for summative assessment. In the session we were treated to two PKs – one by the tutor, David Turner and then an excellent (Grade 83%) one on Bill Shankley & Cultural Identity by one of the students. Having tried it before myself I cannot stress enough how good both PKs were as I know how difficult it is. Four of the students then answered questions on their experiences. They had found the assessment tough, more work than other assignments but hugely rewarding and beneficial – not just for their academic studies but also in terms of confidence for forthcoming interviews for example.

Click it. Swipe it. Wink it.

clickitprezi

 

Click image to view presentation (new window)

My short keynote focused on four topics extracted from a variety of future-gazing reports (including the NMC Horizon Reports, OU Innovating Pedagogy Reports, and an Horizon Scanning Report for LFHE):

  1. Blended – not particularly new nor innovative, but there is a real renaissance in online learning at the moment, in part due to the hype around MOOCs. The next few years will undoubtedly see a significant increase in the online aspect of the face-to-face / online blend.
  2. Gamification – the application of gaming mechanics & psychology to education, such as ‘rewards’ as a motivating factor. Digital Badges are an example of this.
  3. Learning Analytics – the collection, analysis & reporting of data about learners and learning contexts. Student (progress) dashboards are one aspect of this but there are many applications, for example the use of analytics to inform curriculum re-design.
  4. Students as Producers – variously interpreted but essentially learning activities involving the creation of digital resources (beyond text) by students that are shared with peers; usually collaboratively and with some autonomy/student choice.

Brief Overview of MOOCs

July 18, 2013 Leave a comment

Visuals from a recent MOOC talk I did at SMUC

I gave a short ‘intro to MOOCs’ talk at the St Mary’s University College E-Learning Staff Development day on 17th July, organised by friend & ex-colleague Hervé Didiot-Cook. The slides don’t tell the whole story of course but they will give you a good idea of what I covered. More about the event in Easy Tools Please on TED team blog.

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No Talking at the Back

June 7, 2013 Leave a comment

A Twitter Backchannel pre-conference workshop for the Learning @ City Conference

I don’t usually ‘write-up’ or share my work workshops here, but this was a little different because 1) it was the first for a long time (my first at City!) 2) It was using iPads (for my first time) 3) it had the best set of feedback I’ve ever had.

No Talking at the Back was a pre-conference workshop for the Learning @ City 2013 conference. The workshop ran 3 times – once for edtech staff and then twice with conference delegates. It’s an introduction to using Twitter to participate in ‘backchannel communication’ during live events such as conferences. There were some pre-workshop activities (including creating an account) and the session itself was a lot of hands-on practical stuff with some discussion around topics such as is it OK to tweet photos of fellow delegates.

Myself and the attendees all used iPads in the workshop which worked really well. I used Prezi to structure the session but much of my presentation was demonstration. It was a slightly strange situation (as it always is) to have participants communicating and interacting with each other online when sitting a few feet from each other but it seemed to work.

 

I had some great individual comments in the feedback and 100% chose Very Good for the workshop overall. More importantly everyone said they might change their practice as a result of the workshop – Yes (4 people), Probably (5) & Possibly (3). Summary of Feedback

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Social Media Presentation for CLL

May 22, 2013 Leave a comment

Social Media in Engineering & Maths presentation as part of the HEA Changing the Learning Landscape programme

I gave this talk as part of a full day on the use of social media in teaching Maths & Engineering. It was Academic Professional Development in Learning Technology strand of the Changing the Learning Landscape programme. The event was held at the University of Manchester and attended by around 40 staff from institutions across the UK.

My talk was essentially highlighting the work of others so I can’t take too much credit. It featured polleverywhere and a collaborative editing experiment with a Google Doc involving 20 or so participants, most of whom weren’t in the room.

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