Thinking big in times of cuts

You have a great idea that will save time, money and make the student and teacher experience better. Trouble is, it will cost many thousands of pounds to implement. How do you persuade the decision makers?

This discussion has been contributed by e-Learning Advisor Ken Scott. Please join the discussion by commenting on this post. We’d love to read your ideas, opinions and concerns.

Snow, snow and more snow: is education coping with the big freeze?

Trains, buses, planes cancelled. Pavements too icy to walk on, temperature freezing, authorities telling us not to travel unless necessary. Sound familiar? Freezing weather puts a stop to a lot of things but should it put a stop to education? How many educational organisations and tutors could continue to teach online if they are not able to get to the learning provider and/or the learning provider closes the building? In these days of extreme weather and the prediction of more shouldn’t we be planning to use online delivery so that learners do not lose out and miss sessions that would normally be delivered face to face?

Thank you to e-Learning Advisor, Kathy Boyer, for contributing this discussion. What do you think? Please let us know your thoughts on the topic by commenting on the post.

Linking University Content for Education and Research Online

(source: JISC)

‘The Open University is the first university in the UK to open up access to online data from across the institution as part of the Linked Open Data Movement.

The JISC-funded OU’s LUCERO (Linking University Content for Education and Research Online) project has enabled information stored across many of the university’s websites to be brought together in a common, openly accessible location:

Data about the OU’s courses, podcasts on iTunes U and academic publications is already available to be queried and explored, and the team is now working to bring together educational and research content from the university’s OpenLearn and library material. At present, this mostly represents a technical platform. However, it will make it possible for the OU and others to create new applications to search and make use of the data.’

More information

JISC Energy Efficiency Project

(source: JISC mailing)

JISC logo

JISC logo

‘New legislation passed in April this year means that most UK colleges and universities will be required to report on their energy use and improve their efficiency or they could face financial penalties.

Now the University of Hertfordshire has become the first university in Europe to meet industry best practice in energy efficiency by complying with this new EU code of conduct for data centres.

JISC part-funded a project at the university which refurbished an existing data centre facility including the development of a waste heat management system to enable the data centre and the building in which it is contained to run more effectively and efficiently.’

Read more about the project.

Government launches skills strategy


Secretary of State for Business Vince Cable and Skills Minister John Hayes have launched the Government’s strategy for skills, Skills for Sustainable Growth, and its parallel publication, Investing in Skills for Sustainable Growth.

The strategy sets out the envisaged reform of the FE and skills system, while Investing in Skills… describes how the Government intends to invest in the reform.

Read the full article including links to downloadable versions of the documents.

Elluminate Wednesdays *Tomorrow*

(source: JISC release)

14:00-15:00pm, 17th November, online

‘The ‘Dynamic Learning Maps‘  project at Newcastle University is an exciting fusion of formal curriculum maps, personal learning and social sharing of learning resources. The project is part of the JISC Transforming Curriculum Delivery through Technology Programme and runs to March 2011.

The session will include an overview of the project, demonstrations from different stakeholder perspectives, technical/interoperability issues and  early evaluation results.’


Guides and tutorials on using Elluminate

The future of education – are we having the right conversation?

(source: JISC)

JISC logo

JISC logo

‘We need to re-engage civil society in a debate about educational purpose.  These are the powerful words of Professor Keri Facer, keynote speaker at the forthcoming JISC innovating e-learning conference (23rd November). According to her, we need to stop using qualifications as a proxy for a debate about educational success – “how many people need to get up to Level Two skills, how many people need degrees” – and instead start really thinking about the  competencies, skills and attributes students may need to thrive in uncertain times.’

Listen to an interview with Professor Keri Facer.

Book your place at the conference

‘Social media helps universities attract the right students’

(source: JISC news release)

‘Facebook photo albums, online clips and video briefings for international students are among examples of best practice highlighted in a new report aimed at helping universities and colleges better inform their first-years about life at university.

The report has been produced as part of a JISC-funded project led by the 1994 group.  The ‘student expectations of university’ project is aimed at enhancing applicants’ understanding of higher education.’

Find out more and download the report

Final registration reminder – Innovating e-Learning 2010

JISC logo

JISC logo

(source: JISC)

23rd – 26th November, online

Bringing Innovation to Life: from adversity comes opportunity – the 5th JISC international online conference.

‘Innovating e-Learning 2010 offers:

  • over 20 live sessions followed by in-depth asynchronous discussion in a highly participative format
  • opportunities to interact with the keynote speakers and colleagues over and above what would be expected from a more traditional conference.
  • flexibility – live sessions are recorded so you will not miss out and can participate in as many sessions as you wish.
  • interactive guided tours of virtual worlds
  • opportunities to try out innovative JISC projects and services in the ‘have-a-go’ area

Conference website

Booking – conference fee £50 per delegate