Wednesday, 21 April 2010

Higher Education Academy Evidence Based Practice Employability and Employee Learning Seminar Series

'Not reinventing the wheel but using the wheels to make a better vehicle: the use of Web 2.0 to enhance and support Foundation Degree students undertaking work-based learning.'

Hosted here at the University of Plymouth on Wednesday 19 May 2010 (11am to 3pm). Its FREE and lunch is included.

The seminar '...will examine new and emerging Web 2.0 technologies which have the potential to enhance and transform the learner experience and to develop the 21st century employability skills of communication, participation, networking and sharing.'

Is it suitable for me?
The seminar is aimed towards academic and professional staff in HE and HE in FE who would like to use easily employed Web 2.0 technologies to support learners in work-based learning.

Where do I sign up?
More details and registration and further details on the presenters on our TechnologyEnhancedLearning website.

Thursday, 15 April 2010

Quicktime VRs (QTVR) now works on Windows 7 64bit

Just an update on my post back in Novemeber 2009 about QTVRs not working in Windows 7 64 bit. It took a long while for Apple to fix this bug, but it looks like the latest update to quicktime 7.6.6 now has QTVRs working on Window 7 64 bit. I must admit though, after this incident its probably best to stick with Flash based VRs in the future...

Friday, 9 April 2010

Plymouth eLearning Conference... 'To V or not to V? that is the question'

Another successful elearning conference here at Plymouth University! The venue was the famous Roland Levinsky building, providing the delegates with large lecture theatres and even a cinema! Each area had a dedicated PC with large screen showing the twitter feeds for #pelc10 coming through far some very positive feedback on twitter. Thanks to Dominic Martignetti (Technical Director) for his efforts in organising this element of the conference (amongst all the other techy components of course! I know he work hard on this). On the point of thanks, we must not forget Mark Lyndon's efforts, creating another excellent conference website, with inclusion of his very creative imagery!

We had some very excellent key notes this year from Josie Fraser, Social and Educational Technologist and Dave White, University of Oxford. Professor Brian Chalkley, Director of Learning and Teaching, University of Plymouth, made some introductory remarks before Josie Fraser's presentation, emphasising the importance of Technology Enhanced Learning (TEL) at Plymouth and its impact on teaching and learning.

Josie presented digital literacy, identity & citizenship. Amusingly but quite poignantly in one part of her talk using the term: 'un-googleable man' a person that has essentially no digital footprint. This had me thinking, could such people actually exist in this technological age? Even if you have not EVER entered anything online, that does not stop others from doing so...Maybe you got a small mention in an online news article? Or published a journal article? Why not google yourself and see what you come up with... Chances are if you are reading this, you probably have some digital identity...

Dave White's talk included elements from the TALL blog (The TALL group is part of the Department for Continuing Education at the University of Oxford). Dave also mentions his technological transition from the Co-Digital to the Post-Digital diagram, and further linking this to: 'The Hierarchy Of Digital Distractions' (select the plain diagram to see the full pyramid) that was originally posted on Thought provoking stuff indeed.

Shameful plug: I teamed up with Sally Holden, Luke McGowan and Paul Russell from the Peninsula College of Medicine & Dentistry, UK (based here in Plymouth University) to produce a talk entitled 'To V or not to V? that is the question' that included examples of our virtual development projects from both dentistry and the environmental sciences, to turn the session into a mini debate. Turning Point voting was also included to quiz the attendees.

More information on the conference is also provided on Steve Wheeler's blog (Conference Chair), also Mark Pannell , Mark Lyndon and Flea Palmer.

Some photos on flickr courtesy of Dawn Wheeler.

Thank you to all those involved both on the home and international organising committees. Looking forward to next years conference!

Wednesday, 7 April 2010

Sharepoint 2010 and Communicator 2007 are coming to Plymouth

I attended the SharePoint 2010 briefing where Mandy Goss outlined plans about the implimentation of SharePoint 2010 across the University.

What's happening with SharePoint?... These are the key points to remember:

  • tulip 2010/11 sites will be created using SharePoint 2010 these should be available for around the end of May 2010.

  • The new sites will be built without content using a new template

  • existing tulip 2009/10 sites will be retained until Christmas and then removed

  • The 3 year archive of tulip sites will no longer be available.

  • Student Portal front page and Mysites (including all staff MySites) will migrate to SP2010 around July 2010

What else?

  • Development is underway to create single-sign-on software (SSO), which means that from mid-May 2010, there will be SSO for all portal areas including Outlook Web Access no more typing in your passwords in different areas...

  • Office Communicator 2007 will roll out at the end of June, the Learning Technologists have been testing this software and there are some useful additional features.

  • Microsoft Office 2010 is still being evaluated so no plans for implementation just yet.

More information please!

Further details on Sharepoint and Office 2010 can be found on the Web Team Community. The actual PowerPoint that Mandy showed us can be found on the Web Team Community (Basic overview of Summer 2010 changes and developments) - username and password required to access these slides.

Are there any benefits to the new SharePoint?

  • In-page editing with WYSIWYG interface with an editing ribbon similar to the format in the existing Office products.

  • Fully customisable menu.

  • Social computing: tags, bookmarks, noticeboard (Similar to Facebook wall).

  • More themes and layouts (and easier to change layouts).

  • MS Office web apps (Similar to Google Docs)

  • Improved blogs and wikis

  • Collaborative MS Office documents (Similar to Google Docs)

  • Ability to work offline

Please also see the word document: What's new in Microsoft Sharepoint Server 2010