Archive for the 'Event' Category

Various events Feb/Mar around fayres, mobile, widgets, research software, storytelling and collaboration tools

A number of events have passed by my inbox which I thought worth sharing:

February 25th JISC Winter Fayre (Edinburgh & Online)

The rescheduled JISC Winter Fayre (our annual event highlighting local best practice in educational technology and JISC Services). There are a few places left  to attend in person (you can book here), we should also be streaming the keynotes and sessions in the Newhaven, so it might be worth having a look at the full programme to see if there is anything you want to tune into (the webcast will be shown here). I’ll also be attempting to stream my session ‘Festive Tweets’ (#s3) on our Livestream account.

March 9th Collaborative Tools to Support the Learner Experience (Edinburgh)

Organised by JISC Netskills here’s part of the blurb:

“Students today have increasingly high expectations about how technology can support their studies. Many will come to your institution already armed with their own web-enabled devices and fluent in the use of social networking. This workshop explores how you might use collaborative tools to achieve greater levels of student satisfaction, engagement and retention and enhance communication between learners and their lecturers and tutors.”

The education sector price is £160. Here’s more info on the Collaborative tools workshop and booking

March 3rd-4th The Collaborations Workshop 2011 (Edinburgh)

Organised by the Software Sustainability Institute if you use software in your research this event might be just for you:

“The Collaborations Workshop (CW) brings together researchers, software developers and funders to form groups that can work together. It’s a forum in which people can talk about their research interests, abilities and requirements, and then meet with people who can fulfil those requirements. There are three aspects to the Collaborations Workshop. A series of lightening talks provides time for delegates to discuss their work. A follow-up session provides time for in-depth discussion between people who are interested in working together. A meet-the-funders session is planned for funders to discuss their plans over the coming year. Additional sessions based on a flexible agenda will allow delegates to talk about the subjects in which they are interested.

For more information on about the Collaborations Workshop, please visit the workshop website (”

£60 for this event. More details and booking for the Collaboration Workshop.

March 10th Exploring Digital Storytelling (Edinburgh)

Another JISC Netskills event:

“Developments in web technology and the variety of digital media now available provide easy access to a wide range of tools for creating and sharing stories.You don’t need to be a skilled film maker to produce your own movies!

This workshop looks at why stories are a powerful and effective way of communicating with an audience and how the technique can be used effectively for a wide range of purposes; learning, publicity and marketing, community engagement and more.

The workshop will give you plenty of opportunities to get ‘hands on’ with the technology as well as offering you a chance to explore how you might use the technique for your own practice and share ideas with others.”

Again £160 education price. Here’s more info on Exploring Digital Storytelling and booking

March 23rd-24th JISC CETIS Widgetbash (Bolton)

As I’ve shown widget/gadgets are relatively easy to make (My first Google Gadget to embed a flickr photoset with Galleria navigation), but there is a lot more you can do with them like making a portable way for users to keep track of exam results (e.g. City of Glasgow College’s Exam View widget). Still not convinced by the benefit of widgets? You should check out ‘What are the implications of developing and using widgets in teaching and learning?’. Here’s more about the Bolton event:

“Interested in web apps, widgets gadgets? Have a great idea but not sure how to build a widget? Not sure how to deploy and install it in your VLE? Then this is the event for you!

This 2 day event will provide widget building tutorials from the Apache Wookie (incubating ) team, examples of developments of institutional approaches to building and deploying a range widgets and mobile applications from the current JISC DVLE programme programme and the iTech projectFull programme and booking for Widgetbash.

March 29th-30th Open Source Junction: cross-platform mobile apps (Oxford)

Organised by the JISC funded OSS Watch in collaboration with 100% Open:

“This two-day workshop will show delegates how to manage the co-production of cross-platform mobile apps in an open development context. The participants will get the knowledge and practical opportunities to set up open source industry-academia partnerships relevant to the mobile apps space.”

If you are from academia and register this month the event is free to attend (after that it’s £50/day). Full programme and booking for OSJunction

[Hmm I wonder if I should be collecting ‘interesting events’ in a Google Calendar to share, a cross-sector intelligent filter of stuff? If you would like me to do this let me know via comments, twitter etc.]

[Events] Developing a High Quality and Inclusive Learning Experience for All Students

The following text arrived in my in box from the ‘Embedding equality and diversity in the curriculum mailing list’ (here’s more info on the project and how to subscribe to mailings) and I thought it was worth sharing. Please note “places are limited to three people from each institution and the workshops are only open to those working at Scottish institutions”

Workshop 1 - 18 February, Scotland’s Colleges, Stirling
Workshop 2 - 9 March, Heriot Watt University, Edinburgh

There is no charge for either workshop.


The HEA and Scotland’s Colleges have organised two workshops as part of the Embedding equality! and diversity in the curriculum programme as an opportunity for practitioners and managers to both share practice and help to shape the future content of the programme.


  • to situate the ‘Embedding equality and diversity in the curriculum’ programme within the broader context of the Scottish Funding Council’s equality and diversity framework
  • to report on the findings of a survey to identify institutional strengths and achievements, priority areas for development and support needs
  • to enable the sharing of practice and identify institutional priorities and support needs
  • to discuss strategies for embedding equality and diversity in the curriculum
  • to develop a vision for a high quality and inclusive learning experience for all students.

Target Audience

The workshops are aimed at practitioners in HE institutions and colleges with responsibility for curriculum design, delivery and assessment, senior managers with responsibility for the student learning experience, staff and educational developers and those with responsibility for equality and diversity and disability.

Places are limited to three people from each institution and the workshops are only open to those working at Scottish institutions.

More information and booking:

18 February workshop -

9 March workshop -

Forthcoming JISC Supported Events in Scotland

There are a couple of events in the next couple of months supported by JISC I thought worth highlighting. 

Open Edge: Open Source in Libraries
25-26th January 2011, e-Science Institute, 15 South College Street, Edinburgh

This free two day event on open source software for libraries is being run in collaboration with JISC and SCONUL. The first day is ’Haggis and Mash’, a Mashed Library event, while the second day covers broader issues, in particular how capacity might be built to enable open source solutions to flourish in HE and FE Libraries. Delegates can choose to attend either or both days of this event.

More details and booking:


Netskills Workshops

Netskills is a JISC service based in Newcastle, but all of the following take place in Edinburgh, in a good quality training central venue only a few minutes walk from Waverley Station!

If Netskills receive your reservations before 10th Jan, you will qualify for a VAT-defying reduction of £32 (ie, a workshop place is £128 instead of £160).

* Thu 24 Feb: CSS: A Complete Web Style Toolkit
* Fri 25 Feb: Writing for the Web
* Mon 28 Feb: An Introduction to Instructional Design for eLearning
* Wed 9 Mar: Collaborative Tools to Support the Learner Experience
* Thu 10 Mar: Exploring Digital Storytelling
* Wed 16 Mar: Database Design and SQL


Enhancing Business Performance: The Role of Technology in Developing Skills and Knowledge
21st February 2011, e-Science Institute, 15 South College Street, Edinburgh

This free one-day conference is being organised by the JISC RSCs in Scotland in partnership with The Higher Education Academy Scotland team to explore how institutions are turning increasingly to technology to provide Business and Employer Engagement solutions. The conference itself will include a variety of sessions exploring current issues, practical resources and advice in the areas of Business and Employer Engagement. Some of the themes to be explored in the conference will include: Technological solutions: opportunities and challenges Developing the internal strategy: Communication, culture, recognition and buy-in Relationship management - what are the benefits/the costs?: People and processes Professional development and skills for engagement Student Employability: skills and attributes learners should expect to develop.

More details and booking:

The fall and rise of the webinar/web conference

In the last couple of weeks my aggregation channels have been gently humming to the sound of webinars. It seems a number of institutions are rediscovering the possibilities of these tools to support flexible delivery (and no doubt cut costs allow the reallocation of staff time to enhance the learner experience). This post is designed to highlight some projects and technical developments that I’ve come across.


Two projects, both funded by the Higher Education Academy, have found their way into my inbox. At Queen Margaret University the Higher Education Academy Subject Centre for Dance, Drama and Music (PALATINE) has funded “An exploration of learner and tutor experience in using online synchronous learning environments across disciplines within the School of Drama and Creative Industries”.

The objectives of this 9 month study are:

    To conduct an in-depth, comparative study of tutor and student experiences of using an online synchronous learning environment (OSLE) in order to:

    • Build a rich picture of actual learner and tutor engagement with such technology across four drama programmes at undergraduate and postgraduate level;
    • Develop an understanding of the impact of using an OSLE in the learning experience;
    • Develop guidelines and case studies for educators to improve learner and tutor use of OSLEs.

As part of this project we are supporting QMU, PALATINE and the HEA Subject Centre for Medicine, Dentistry & Veterinary Medicine (MEDEV) in running the Crossing Virtual Boundaries - Teaching and Research with Online Synchronous Learning Environments (OSLEs) event to be held on the 10 June 2011 (click here for booking details). Here is a good starting point for find out more about the QMU project.

The second project is funded as of part of the HEA Discipline-focused Learning Technology Enhancement Academy Programme. The Collaboration for Excellence in a Distance Learning Environment (Excel-DL)  project is being led by the University of Salford. I haven’t seen much detail about this project but do know their aim is to:

evaluate the use of ‘Elluminate Live’, a synchronous online collaboration delivery method for postgraduate distance learners within the School of the Built Environment, University of Salford (to inform the wider context of Construction & Built Environment Community)

The main reason for highlighting this project is because they are hosting a free online session on ‘Synchronous Online Learning: Bridging the Divide’ on the 10th November 2010 from 1m to 4:15pm. The aim of the event is to:

“is to explore the pros and cons and the pedagogical inspirations of this particular innovation with distinguished academics”

Sessions in the event include:

  • Practice and pedagogies of synchronous online learning – Tim Neumann
  • Synchronous vs asynchronous online learning – Stefan Hrastinski
  • Play time: an interactive demonstration of the possibilities of synchronicity – Peter Chatterton
  • The blended situated learner context for synchronous collaboration – Ian Mills & Georgina Evans
  • Anticipating the future learner – Simon Kear

Click here for more information and to book a place

Software developments

As well as renewed interest in the human side of webinars there are also a couple of software developments worth flagging:

Blackboard:  Wimba + Elluminate = Gemini

If you are a Blackboard user you might be interested in Collborate on Gemini post by Kevin Brace at Aston University. This post reviews a recent webinar he attended outlining Blackboard’s roadmap for merging their recently acquired Wimba and Elluminate webinar platforms.

Adobe Connect Mobile for Android

Mobile technology is everywhere, quite literally, and if you are talking about flexible delivery it is inevitable that mobiles will come into the conversation. Looking at the disputed Wikipedia Comparison of web conferencing software you’ll see very few products are declaring mobile device support. For institutions using or looking into Adobe Connect you might be interested to hear that Connect Mobile for Android is now available. This adds to their support for iPhone related devices (iPad, iPod Touch and iPhone).

Open source alternative: Big Blue Button

I was initially dismissive about the open source webinar tool ‘Big Blue Button’ not finding the interface very intuitive, but then I had session in Adobe Connect and concluded all webinar software is counterintuitive. Rather than going through the details of Big Blue Button I recommend you read Steve Boneham’s blog post, which should have everything you need and more. The Moodle integration looks particularly interesting.   

So what have I missed in all of this? Very interested to hear about other projects or tools in this area. Please share using the comments

Free Events: Developing Mobile Applications and QA/QE in e-Learning

A couple of events have hit my inbox which I think are worth sharing:

Developing Mobile Applications for Education [DevCSI]

logo-devcsi Date: 21 July 2010
Start time: 09:30
Location/venue: Hopkins Building, University of Reading

This is a free one day DevCSI workshop organised in conjunction with IT Services: Academic Services Directorate at the University of Reading is aimed at developers, web developers, systems administrators, who are interested in developing applications relevant for education on mobile devices and / or how to develop mobile friendly web content.

The day will include introductions / advice on developing:

  • for Iphone/IPad Platforms
  • for Symbian enabled devices
  • for Android devices
  • mobile device friendly web content

More information about Developing Mobile Applications event

Quality Assurance and Quality Enhancement in e-Learning Conference [HEA]

Date: 2 Jul 2010
Start Time: 10:00 am
Location/venue: Fielder Centre, University of Hertfordshire, England

This one-day conference will explore challenges facing the sector in relation to assuring quality whilst also enabling quality enhancement and innovation through technology enhanced learning (TEL).

Technologies impact on all aspects of the learning process, including teaching, assessment and communication. In light of changes in technologies and the changing role of e-learning within higher education, guidance and policies associated with quality assurance and quality enhancement of technology enhanced learning (TEL) need to be considered and reviewed.

Presentations will include a keynote from Professor Colin Raban, Director of Quality Enhancement at the University of Derby and dissemination of consultation findings from the HEA funded QAQE project.

The day will also include networking opportunities and participatory sessions to explore practitioner needs.

More information about QA/QE in e-Learning conference

Free Events: Green IT, Freedom of Information for Researchers and e-Assessment Scotland 2009

Some events of note:

Implementing Green IT

24th August 2009 – 13:00 to 16:30
Queen Margaret University, EH21 6UU

Following on from the JISC-funded Smarter Greener Learning Conference in April the RSCs in Scotland and the EAUC (Environmental Association for Universities and Colleges) are now following-up with an event which dives more firmly into issues around implementation.

On the programme:

  • How to minimise power consumption through water cooling, powerdown, thin client and virtualisation.
  • How to understand your energy and carbon needs and then to reduce them

Confirmed speakers from City College, Norwich; Napier University, Edinburgh; Angus College, Arbroath, and the Environmental Association for Universities and Colleges.

Click here to book in for your free place now.

Freedom of Information: what’s in it for researchers?

14 September 2009 – 10:00 to 16:00
The Lighthouse, 11 Mitchell Lane, Glasgow, G1 3NU

Research Information Network LogoThe Research Information Network is holding this free event to raise awareness of the Freedom of Information Act (FOI) as a tool for researchers and to aid understanding of the new access regime. The day will cover how to use FOI to access records and information and how to make successful requests. Case studies will be presented to explore how to use FOI in practice, offering strategies for what works well for particular disciplines and types of research and insights will be provided from the Scottish perspective.

Key speakers:

  • Professor Duncan Tanner – Director, Welsh Institute for Social and Cultural Affairs, Bangor University
  • Sarah Hutchinson - Head of Policy and Information, Scottish Information Commissioner
  • Bruno Longmore – Head of Government Records, National Archives of Scotland
  • Hugh Hagan – Senior Inspecting Officer Government Records Branch, National Archives of Scotland

The workshop is aimed at academic researchers; other research workers, such as journalists; librarians, archivists and other information professionals who provide research services and research training; compliance officers interested in facilitating access and advising requestors and public policy makers in the access to information arena.

For a full programme, more information and to book your free place, visit

Tel 020 7412 7946 Email [email protected]

e-Assessment Scotland 2009

25th September 2009 – 09:30 to 16:00
Hilton Dundee Hotel, Earl Grey Place, Dundee, DD1 4DE

Scotland’s first annual e-Assessment conference has been scheduled for the 25th of September at Dundee’s Hilton hotel. Bringing together speakers from schools, further and higher education, the event will showcase Scottish innovation and best practice in the field.

It’s free to attend the one-day event, which will also play host to the Scottish e-Assessment Awards, which recognises achievements in the categories of:

  • Formative e-Assessment
  • Summative e-Assessment
  • e-Portfolio/PDP
  • Mobile e-Assessment
  • e-Assessment Administration
  • Innovation

The conference is being organised by the University of Dundee, e-Assessment Association, Scottish Regional Support Centres, SQA and Higher Education Academy.

More details on how to book a place at the conference and submit an entry to the Scottish e-Assessment Awards can be found on the eAssessment Scotland website


Do Virtual Worlds have a Place in Education?

Virtual Worlds 2008

This is the question being asked by the Scottish Regional Support Centres and Higher Education Academy (Scotland) at the Virtual Worlds Conference at the University of Stirling on the 29th October 2008.

Unlike many other events which deal with virtual worlds, like Second Life, this event is designed around giving participants hands-on experience of using this technology, seeing how virtual worlds are already being used to enhance teaching and learning.

For those new to life seen through the eyes of an avatar, the Scottish RSCs will also be running a series of workshops around Scotland to familiarise delegates with Second Life - one of the applications used to demonstrate learning sequences during the hands-on sessions.

Date:       Wednesday, 29th October
Venue:    University of Stirling
Cost:       £50

Click here for more information and conference registration


This blog is authored by Martin Hawksey e-Learning Advisor (Higher Education) at the JISC RSC Scotland N&E.

mhawksey [at] | 0131 559 4112 | @mhawksey

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