Digital Education team blog
  • We support Staff and Students using technology to enhance education at UCL.

    Here you'll find updates on institutional developments, projects we're involved in, updates on educational technology, events, case studies and personal experiences (or views!).

  • Subscribe to the Digital Education blog

  • Meta

  • Tags

  • A A A

    ISD Digital Roadshow@IOE

    By Clive Young, on 24 May 2016

    draioe

    Join us for a digital roadshow on June 29th 10.30-3.30pm, Nunn Hall, Level 4, UCL Institute of Education. All staff and students are welcome.

    Listen to key ideas about digital capabilities in relation to educational practice from Diana Laurillard and Nazlin Bhimani. Find out about the range of digital services available from UCL ISD and IT for IOE in short talks and PechaKucha presentations.

    Get practical support and share ideas and issues on stalls including; ‘There’s an app for that’, a ‘Mac Brilliance bar’, ‘The digital library‘, Digital Media Services and much more.

    Network with colleagues over a brown bag lunch, share ideas and concerns and find out how ISD and  IT for IOE and the UCL IOE Library can help staff and students.

    http://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/isd-digital-roadshow-ioe-tickets-24865392057

    ABC reaches Glasgow… and Santiago!

    By Clive Young, on 23 May 2016

    Nataša Perović and I took UCL’s popular ABC learning design workshop on the road last week, on Friday running a session for the first time outside UCL. We were invited to the University of Glasgow by ex-UCL colleague Dr Vicki Dale, now with their Learning Technology Unit. Vicki had seen the workshop running in London and was keen to try it with her colleagues. 32 participants came from all four of Glasgow’s colleges and the energy in the room was remarkable and  indicative of the huge interest generated. We were pleased to see the method was as “really useful” for Glasgow participants (see below) as we have found it with UCL colleagues.

    glasgow

    In a curious coincidence on Friday the ABC method was also used for the first time abroad, this time in Santiago, Chile. Robert Pardo, Director of the Centro de Aprendizaje, Universidad Adolfo Ibáñez, had taken our materials, translated them into Spanish and after a couple of Skype sessions with us ran the workshop very successfully with a group of his colleagues. His conclusion? ” It works!! “

    chile

     

    Developing projects with disabled students

    By Moira Wright, on 9 May 2016

    In 2014 Michele Farmer (Disability IT Support Analyst – ISD) came up with the idea for developing some projects and put in a bid with help from Steve Rowett (Digital Education Developments Team Leader) and was allocated some money to run a project for disabled students.

    The idea was to give students a chance to develop resources that they felt would be useful to disabled and non-disabled users whilst gaining new skills, work experience and a bit of pocket money.

    We recruited four students who worked on a variety of outputs and ideas. Mark Shaw worked on a film that compared different referencing tools which is helpful to all students. Two others, Richard Kendall and Lewis Hopper, worked on a series of informational films that told users about the various support systems available to disabled users as well as a short film on Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI) from a personal perspective. James Prime worked on resources for blind users.

    We are extremely impressed with the students’ efforts. Check out the links below to view the films they produced.

    These projects were delivered with support from Digital Education Developments who helped to access some additional funding through the UCL ChangeMaker Digital Literacy programme.

    Mark Shaw – comparison and demos of reference programs.

    Overview of Reference Manager software

    Richard Kendall and Lewis Hopper – students’ views on support and services for disabled users at UCL.

    Initial experiences of UCL

    How has UCL responded to your needs both academically and outside university?

    What facilities are made available at UCL and do these met the needs of students?

    What advice would you give to a prospective student with a disability starting at UCL?

    Some courses offered by UCL include physically demanding activities. How have these been dealt with?

    Are you aware of the places round campus where you can access confidential support?

    Did you feel there was any difference in treatment between you and other students during your time at UCL?

    Richard Kendall and Lewis Hopperadvice on prevention and care of workstation related injuries.

    Dealing with Repetitive Strain injury (RSI) and related nerve damage

    James Prime – Guide to using JAWS with Excel for blind users and for trainers.

    http://www.ucl.ac.uk/isd/how-to/accessibility-disabilityit/jaws-and-excel-commands

     

    It’s off to work we go: the role of universities and employers in developing digital skills for employability.

    By Moira Wright, on 5 May 2016

    Off to workThe next UCL Digital Literacy Special Interest Group will be taking place on June 9th from 2- 5.00 pm  (ticket link at the end this post).

    The report ‘Digital skills for the UK economy’ (ECORYS UK, 2016), strongly suggests that the vast majority of the workforce increasingly need the confidence, skills and competences to use digital resources in the workplace. Although Higher Education institutions provide support for their learners in developing these skills, often at a high level, these efforts may be more focused on enhancing the student experience and achievement within the education environment than on their employability.

    Indications are that workplace skills are better developed outside the traditional functional skills development model designed for the more specific occupations of the past and instead perhaps should focus on real-world learning experiences and novel approaches to help graduates develop the workplace skills needed today. A recent Spectator article about their internships highlighted ‘ If you write well but can’t edit an audio file or make short video (or work out how to) then this internship is probably not for you’ (Nelson et al, 2016) and novel ways of such as interactive infographics instead of CV’s being used to attract prospective employers attention becoming more commonplace such as this example – http://www.rleonardi.com/interactive-resume/.

    Jisc have suggested embedding these skills within ‘connected curricula’ and recognising the lifelong learning aspects of employability as a graduate attribute could be underpinned by technology (JISC, 2015). The recent introduction by QAA of the themes of digital literacy and student partnership in developing employability have highlighted the need for higher education to face up to the challenge of delivering practical support in digital and workplace know-how to enhance graduate attributes (QAA, 2015).

    Adaptability, flexibility, complex problem solving, working in a team and an ability to use an ever increasing range of digital platforms, technologies and environments are the abilities that the modern workplace requires – irrespective of role or career choice.

    Who is responsible for developing these digital skills for employability – the university, the employer or the student?

    This event will explore the issues around technology, digital skills and employability in order to provide an opportunity to reflect on evidence, good practice, challenges and opportunities.

    Programme

    Hugh Mannerings – Academic Lead for Retention & Attainment at Higher Education Academy

    Tobias Buschel – UCL PG student – slack / student projects

    Stephane Goldstein – SCONUL 7 Pillars employability lens

    Laura Firmin and Sophia Donaldson – UCL Careers – internships at UCL

    Charlie Inskip – UCL Department of Information Studies

    Please note the programme will be updated in due course with further details about the sessions and is subject to change.


     References:

    ECORYS UK (2016) Digital skills for the UK economy. Available: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/492889/DCMSDigitalSkillsReportJan2016.pdf [ Accessed March 7th 2016]

    Nelson, F., Ross, D., Thompson, D., Chancellor, A. and Beasley-Murray, B. (2016) Internships at the spectator for summer 2016. No CVs, please | coffee house. Available at: http://blogs.spectator.co.uk/2016/03/internships-at-the-spectator-for-summer-2016/ (Accessed: 14 March 2016).

    JISC (2015) Technology for employability. Available: http://repository.jisc.ac.uk/6252/4/Technology_for_employability_-_quick_read_report.PDF [Accessed March 7th 2016]

    QAA (2015) Higher Education Review: Themes for 2015-2016. Available:http://www.qaa.ac.uk/en/Publications/Documents/HER-Themes-Guidance-15-16.pdf [Accessed March 7th 2016]

    HM Treasury, Department for Business, Innovation & Skills, The Rt Hon George Osborne and The Rt Hon Sajid Javid (2015) Fixing the foundations: Creating a more prosperous nation. Available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/fixing-the-foundations-creating-a-more-prosperous-nation (Accessed: 10 March 2016).

    HEA, Learning and Employability series 1 and 2 (2006) Available at: https://www.heacademy.ac.uk/sites/default/files/id116_employability_in_higher_education_336.pdf (Accessed: 10 March 2016).

    Are we using technology effectively to support student employability?
    Available at: http://blogs.ucl.ac.uk/digital-education/2016/01/19/are-we-using-technology-effectively-to-support-student-employability/ (Accessed: 22 March 2016).


    Link to registration and tickets via EventbriteIt’s off to work we go: the role of universities and employers in developing digital skills for employability.


    For any queries about this event or the UCL DL SIG please email: moira.wright@ucl.ac.uk

    Digital Skills Development courses for next term now available

    By Domi C Sinclair, on 3 May 2016

    New dates are now available for ISD Digital Skills Development courses for the summer term.  Courses cover a range of applications including Photoshop, Excel, Stata, Unix, Matlab to name but a few. New this year we have courses in R with RStudio and an Introduction to SQL.  We also now have an Excel 2013 Essential Skills course which is a good foundation for our other Excel courses. Courses are very popular so book early to avoid disappointment.

    Interested in Reproducible Research?  Come along and find out more.  A lunchtime session entitled  ‘First Tools for Reproducible Research’ will be held on 5th May 1 – 2 p.m. in J Z Young Lecture Theatre (G29), Anatomy building.

    For a full list of our courses and link to the booking system visit the staff course catalogue or student course catalogue  If you can’t find what you are looking for, we have a vast range of high-quality video-based courses available at Lynda.com.  Visit the UCL Lynda page to find out more.

    Not sure what you need or need more specific individual help?  Come along to our twice-weekly drop in sessions

    IT courses for UCL staff and students at UCL Institute of Education

    By Domi C Sinclair, on 28 April 2016

    The summer term training schedule is now available and bookings are now open. To view the schedule and making bookings see: IT for IOE Course Bookings

    The programme offers a choice of mini demonstration sessions, mini workshops and full hands-on sessions and includes:

    • sessions looking at iPad apps, Prezi, blogging, mind mapping, Lynda.com, various web tools and Office 2013 applications
    • new hands-on workshops on Evernote, OneNote, WordPress, screencasting tools
    • Mac sessions looking at Keynote (alternative to PowerPoint) and Office 2016 applications
    • hands-on Endnote sessions

    All sessions take place at the UCL IOE campus, 20 Bedford Way