Digital Education team blog
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    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!).

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    Archive for the 'Digital literacies' Category

    New digital learning opportunities now available

    By Caroline Norris, on 5 October 2016

    vintage typewriter literature reviewDigital Skills Development sessions

    New dates are now available for ISD Digital Skills Development courses for the first half of term.  For a full list of our courses and link to the booking system visit the student course catalogue or the staff course catalogue (you will need to follow a further link to get to the actual booking pages).

    New this term we have a lunchtime session on ‘Kick-starting your literature review’.  This is a demonstration session but you can bring your own device to install the software and follow along.  We also have a new SharePoint course for staff.  As usual we also offer a wide range of courses covering data analysis, programming, spreadsheets and much more.

    If you can’t find what you are looking for, we have a vast range of high-quality video-based courses available at  Visit the UCL page to find out more.  You can also come along to one of Digital Skills Development drop ins if you want more individual support.

    European Computer Driving Licence

    Our 2016 -17 ECDL programme for postgraduates is now open.  The European Computer Driving Licence is an internationally recognised IT qualification and is offered free each year to a limited number of students.  You will need to attend one of our orientation sessions, study independently online and then sit exams at our Wednesday afternoon testing sessions.  Visit our ECDL web pages to find out more and apply.  Note that we do offer a slightly different ECDL programme for staff as well for a small fee.  Details of the staff programme are also available on our web pages.

    ISD IT for IOE sessionsBowl of soup digital skills

    IT for IOE Training also offer a wide range of courses to both staff and students at their Bedford Way campus.  Visit their course bookings page for details.  There are a choice of mini demonstrations, mini workshops and full hands-on sessions in areas such as:

    • iPad apps, Prezi, WordPress for blogging, twitter for research, digital notebooks, mind mapping, screencasting and infographics
    • free online live polling and Q&A tools for presenting and teaching
    • Office 2013 and EndNote
    • Mac sessions looking at Keynote (alternative to PowerPoint) and Office 2016 applications

    New features on

    By Caroline Norris, on 15 September 2016

    Those who use may have noticed already that there have been some changes to the user interface and some exciting new features have been added.  The next time you log on you will be asked ‘What do you want to accomplish on’ and guided through a range of options.


    Once you have chosen some goals, these will be included in the Recommended section of your personalised profile.  You can go back to My Goals (on the drop-down menu under your name) to change your choices at any time.


    Your home page has now been re-organised to make it more streamlined with courses you are currently watching (Continue Watching) and Your Playlist on the left and Popular Learning Paths and other highlighted courses on the right.  The courses section is now tabbed with New, Popular and Recommended sections.


    If you aren’t familiar yet with Learning Paths, these are sets of courses written by industry experts designed to teach you the knowledge and skills to pursue a particular career or work towards a particular certification.

    Finally, something to look forward to: there will soon be a ‘Popular at UCL‘ tab added so you will be able to see what other users here are enjoying!

    Check out the new features in…




    UCL students win Jisc Summer of Student Innovation Prize

    By Janina Dewitz, on 9 September 2016

    Know It Wall has been announced as a Summer of Student Innovation winner, bagging £10,000 in funds to further develop their idea in collaboration with Jisc.

    On 23 August, seven of the 15 Summer of Student Innovation ‘Student Ideas’ first round winners beat the competition to secure further funding and support from Jisc to develop their ideas into real products ready for market. Following a four day Jisc run ‘design sprint’ in Birmingham, the student teams went head to head to persuade the judges in a Dragon’s Den style pitch, and we are proud to announce that Know It Wall came out on top!

    Know It Wall aims to make current academic research accessible to the intellectually curious public through the use of text and high quality audio-visual content. So far the team have produced 18 episodes on topics ranging from human memory to the discovery of the Higgs Boson. Team Know It Wall is planning to spend the prize money on producing video content and the development of additional features to the website.

    Feeling curious? Dip right in at !

    Find out more about the project…


    The Summer of Student Innovation is in its fourth year and is managed by Jisc. More information is available at

    “The competition really does show that students are best placed to address education sector issues, and their innovative ideas are perfect for supporting learning, teaching or research”
    – Andy McGregor, Deputy Chief Innovations Officer, Jisc

    Have you got students with an innovative edtech idea? Digital Education Futures can provide support and mentorship.

    Contact Janina Dewitz, Innovations Officer,


    Wikipedia Course Leaders’ event

    By Mira Vogel, on 15 August 2016

    Wikimedia UK held a Wikipedia Course Leaders event on the afternoon of July 19th. The meeting brought together academics who use Wikipedia in their modules, Wikipedians in Residence, and other Wikipedia and higher education enthusiasts (like me) to exchange their practice and think about some of the challenges of working for assessment in an environment which is very much alive and out in the world.

    As you can imagine, we were all in agreement about the potential of Wikipedia in our respective disciplines, which included Applied Human Geography, Psychology, Law, World Christianity, and Research Methods for Film. As you can see from the notes we took, we discussed colleagues’ and students’ reservations, tensions and intersections between Wikimedia and institutional agendas, relationships between students and other Wikipedians, assessment which is fair and well-supported, and Wikipedia tools for keeping track of students. There are plenty of ideas, solutions, and examples of good and interesting practice. There is a new and developing Wikimedia page for UK universities.

    If you are interested in using Wikipedia to give your students the experience of public writing on the Web and contributing within a global community of interest, there is plenty of support.

    ISD Digital Roadshow@IOE

    By Clive Young, on 24 May 2016


    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.

    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  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