East Midlands Learning Technologists

East Midlands Learning Technologists' Group, supported by ALT

Autumn 2014 meeting announced!

Mind the gap image

Photo Credit: Robert S. Donovan via Compfight cc

Not long until our next meeting!!

Our autumn meeting of the East Midlands Learning Technologists’ group for 2014 is due to take place on the 22nd of October at Loughborough College and the theme is ‘Mind the Gap! Mainstreaming and supporting innovation‘ – and we’d like to hear your stories of how you discovered innovation, how you shared it, how you helped to change practice… or how you took a small innovative idea and made it big. As ever… we need you!!

Call for presentations

We’d love to have some PechaKucha presentations from our community – 6 minute presentations with images – where you tell us about how you got over that awkward gap between a great idea and the reality of getting it into the mainstream. Small scale, large scale, online, offline, formal or informal learning… give us a taste of your experience and some food for thought. We’re interested in presentations from across the learning spectrum – whether that’s Higher Education, Further Education, Schools, local government or the private sector, we’d like to hear from you.

Closing date for submitting presentation ideas is 5pm on Friday 26th September 2014 and we’ll confirm presenters during the first week of October. So, to submit your ideas, head to the submission form (http://goo.gl/ccVuye) and fill out the details.

Event details

Date: 22nd October 2014

Time: 1pm to 4pm with a buffet lunch from 12pm

Venue: Loughborough College, Radmoor Rd, Loughborough, Leicestershire LE11 3BT

Cost: Free (hooray for free!)

Booking here: http://emltautumn14.eventbrite.co.uk – it’s password protected – just head to our JiscMail list to get the password (and prove you’re not a robot!)

Food and drink will be available on arrival. There will be chance for networking over a buffet lunch, interesting presentations from our community and the chance for discussion with the meeting ending no later than 4pm. The cost, as ever, is free… so if you can get yourself to Loughborough on the afternoon of the 22nd of October, then it would be great to see you there!

A map for the campus can be found on the Loughborough College website but can also be downloaded from this link too:
https://docs.loucoll.ac.uk/Student%20Documents/Campus%20Map.pdf

Roll on October!

Sarah

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20-ish ways to use video in teaching…

Photo Credit: ** RCB ** via Compfight cc

Photo Credit: ** RCB ** via Compfight cc

Firstly… very many thanks to Dr Stuart Jolly, BSc Coaching and Sports Science Course Leader, Nottingham Trent University for all of these fabulous ideas which he shared with us at our Spring 2014 EMLT meeting.  He provided us with a video as part of his talk and while I could see everyone frantically scribbling to capture all of his great ideas, I thought I’d write them up to make sharing them just that little bit easier.

So, on to the main part of this blog post… the 20-ish ways!

  1. ‘I’m sorry I can’t be with you’ messages – for those moments when you just can’t be there but can send a video message along anyway, for example, providing a message for an Open Day you can’t attend
  2. Pre-induction welcome videos – sending out a video to students, welcoming them to the course and helping new students navigate through the first weeks of their studies
  3. Induction videos – allowing students to introduce themselves and capture that to share with others
  4. Creating post-induction video walls – combining all of the induction videos, a visual reminder about who’s who in your student community
  5. Recording in-class activities – for later review, for example, group role plays where everyone is involved in the activity and they don’t actually get to see the ‘whole’
  6. Student sports projects – particularly useful for slow motion recordings of particular techniques so aid further analysis and understanding
  7. Student assessment video projects – get students to make videos for assessment purposes, for example a video which captures what’s involved in particular coaching projects
  8. Recording peer coaching for assessed portfolio – again, creating a record for later review of what was involved in a particular type of coaching
  9. Recording external coaching for assessed portfolio – expanding the boundaries of the classroom and making videos on location
  10. Developing students’ digital literacies with equipment – for example, creating video tutorials on how to use particular bits of technology such as scanning with copiers etc
  11. Developing students’ digital literacies with tools – for example, creating short video tutorials on how to use services such a Mendeley for referencing
  12. Developing peer staff digital literacies – supporting colleagues with simple tips and ideas to make their lives easier with technology, for example using macros in Word to create one-click entry of module details etc
  13. Recording delivered sessions – for example, capturing a session delivered by colleagues from the Careers service to make available for students
  14. Fostering course identity – sometimes it’s just good to record what happened during the life of the course to help students understand how far they’ve come (and how much fun they’ve had!)
  15. Adding video to recordings – taking an audio recording and finding video to play underneath it can really help create a rich learning resource
  16. Recording student presentations – for things that are delivered synchronously, video can easily capture them and provide an additional opportunity for critique and reflection
  17. Reminding students what they’ve done – using a digital storytelling approach where photographs from across the course are put together with music / words
  18. Putting it all together – videos don’t have to live in isolation from one another… get students to edit together their videos to create a video portfolio

So… 18… which is almost 20.  Hence ’20-ish’ ways Stuart’s used video in teaching!

If you have any other ways in which you’ve used video in your teaching, do drop off a comment and let us know!

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EMLT Meeting – Summer 2014 – BOOK NOW!

Photo Credit: Kevin Conor Keller via Compfight cc

Photo Credit: Kevin Conor Keller via Compfight cc

Summer is (almost!) here and it’s time for another East Midlands Learning Technologists’ meeting!  The venue, date and time is set… so… we’ll hopefully see plenty of you at the University of Nottingham on July 8th from 12pm for lunch with the meeting starting at 1pm.

The theme for the meeting is…

‘Open All Hours’

… all about openness, flexible delivery and shifting boundaries in education… and we need you!

Call for presentations

We’d like to have some PechaKucha presentations from our community – 6 minute presentations with images – where you tell us about ‘open’.  Whether that’s involvement in production of Open Educational Resource, working on MOOCs, how you’re exploring informal / formal learning in your work, research or legal / policy in the area of openness as stories of the difference an open mindset is making in the curriculum across disciplines / institutions – we’d love to hear about them and help disseminate your work across our region / nationally.

Closing date for submitting ideas is 5pm on Friday 13th June 2014… submit your ideas using this form: http://goo.gl/B0LQod

Booking

Sounds like you want to come along?  Excellent!

Date:                     8th July 2014

Time:                    1pm to 4pm with a buffet lunch from 12pm

Venue:                 B46, The Dearing Building, University of Nottingham, Jubilee Campus, Wollaton Road, Nottingham, NG8 1BB

Cost:                      Free (we love things that are free!)

To book head to http://emltsummer14.eventbrite.co.uk where you’ll need to enter the password to get in… this is: em1t  (emlt with the L replaced by a number 1) and then click on Register.

A map for the campus can be found on their website but can be downloaded from this link too:

http://www.nottingham.ac.uk/sharedresources/documents/mapjubileecampus.pdf.  There is parking available, you just need to use the visitor parking where 4 hours parking will cost £4:00.

We’re really looking forward to seeing as many of you there as can make it… so sign up… encourage others to attend… tweet about it… and help make it a really useful event for us all!  Our hashtag is #emlt so help us spread the word!!

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Best Practice Hints and Tips: Video in learning and teaching

Photo Credit: bernat... via Compfight cc

Photo Credit: bernat… via Compfight cc

At our recent East Midlands Learning Technologists’ meeting, ‘Video Killed the Radio Star’, we were exploring the digital video creativity and between us we came up with a list of hints and tips for those wanting to work with video in learning and teaching.  I promised I’d share our hints and tips… so… here they are…

Preparation

  1. Don’t underestimate the time it takes.  Time is often the limiting factor.
  2. Consider your location
  3. Think about accessibility – consider file types and subtitles as part of the production process
  4. Get permission from participants
  5. You don’t always have to create your own video – there’s so much stuff out there already so reuse where you can!
  6. Establish the purpose of your video – why do you want to make it?  Don’t just make videos for the sake of videos!
  7. Rehearse and think about using a script – even if you are super familiar with the content it reduces the ums and urrs.
  8. Have appropriate production values – not everything has to be top quality, some materials can be rough and ready
  9. Will the video be standalone or be used with other learning materials? Tailor your video content to compliment the other materials.

Pre-recording checklist

  1. Consider your audience – this will help you decide whether you want the presenter to look directly at the camer
  2. Steady hands needed!  Alternatively… use a tripod
  3. Check jacket for porridge!  And teeth for spinach!
  4. Might audio work okay on its own?
  5. Make sure you consider sound, in many ways it’s more important than the visuals
  6. Think about how your video will be delivered?  Will it be accessible on YouTube, DVD, download?
  7. Get some phone and tablet tripod mounts – mobile devices can be a great way of recording video

Recording

  1. Keep it short
  2. Tag / apply meta data to your videos
  3. If you are creating your own video something, try to make it reusable or usable in different contexts
  4. Avoid dates and names etc so that videos can easily be reused
  5. Be aware of the message you’re trying to convey
  6. Listen back to what you’re recording
  7. Consider eye contact – for example, in an interview have someone ask questions so they have a focal point to look at.

Other ideas for video in learning and teaching

  1. Get students to create and edit their own videos!  They could be for revision purposes or showcasing skills for an e-portfolio etc
  2. Use for verbal feedback for students – you can expression your opinions quickly and in more detail.  You can also clarify points if a student is unsure of your feedback and the student can look over this in their own time… and it provides evidence that you are giving constructive feedback to improve their work
  3. Use video to introduce yourself and the course on the VLE – this adds a personal touch and helps build relationships
  4. Create short instructional videos of basic skills that students will require throughout their course but may need sporadically – this is useful as you don’t need to go over this material repeatedly and reduces the likelihood of ‘cold’ learning in teaching sessions

Are there any other hints and tips you’d add?  Use the comments box to share them with us!

Sarah

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Our Spring 2014 EMLT meeting – Video killed the radio star

So, another meeting has come and gone.  There was cake, there were cups of tea, there was chatting and there were ideas.  Lots of lovely ideas!  All held at the University of Derby on the 2nd of April 2014.

Video killed the radio star

If in doubt, draw your own illustration!

The theme for the meeting was ‘Video Killed the Radio Star’ (which obviously meant that *that* song got stuck in my head for the whole time I was organising the meeting!).  We wanted to explore what digital video creativity looked like in all of its forms.  From the small scale of designing learning activities with video to institutional systems and new ways of ‘doing’.  We had several terrific presentations on the theme and a healthy discussion about what value video might have in education as well as coming up with a list of tips for good practice which everyone had the chance to contribute to.

Following a lovely buffet, the first presentation of the day came from Simon Birkett, Technology Enhanced Learning Manager at the University of Derby.

He spoke on ‘Learning Space Design – Digital Innovation and Creativity’ and talked us through the changes which have been happening to learning spaces at Derby.  Transforming the way people think about even things like furniture – moving from the ‘furniture on wheels is a health and safety issue’ mindset to the ‘where are the wheels, how can we make the space flexible’ has been a challenging one, but the images Simon shared clearly showed how it could impact on the way in which students could work together.  The joined up thinking and investment seemed to be strong messages which came across from his presentation and provided plenty of food for thought!

Following Simon’s presentation, we moved on to the PechaKucha sessions.  We were very fortunate to have colleagues from across our region presenting on a range of topics – and all of whom did a fabulous job of keeping to time!  No easy feat when it comes to PechaKucha-style presenting.

First up for the PechaKucha’s was Rob Higson from the University of Derby – presenting on ‘Engaging our fashion programme through video’.

He shared some of the work he and a colleague at the university have been doing in working with an academic to integrate video into her teaching practice with fashion students.  From instructional videos to video feedback to students as creators of their own videos for critique – it was great to see.  They were using iPads with the Panopto app to capture the video and it showed just how one good idea could flow into another and another… and ultimately change practice.

Next up, the brilliantly titled ‘Putting Lipstick on a Pig’ from Charles Shields, University of Loughborough.

Charles shared the reality of lecture capture at scale – points of resistance that he’d experienced and, more importantly, how they were handled.  Apart from needing a prize for his presentation title, he gave everyone lots of food for thought and the opportunity to reflect on their own experience of supporting lecture capture.

Following on from Charles was Matt Howcroft, University of Derby who shared ‘Creating a great video learning resource’.

With his beautifully visual presentation took everyone through the value that video could add and what approaches might work in learning and teaching.  Great stuff from Matt!!

Nikodem Miranowicz from the University of Nottingham followed with ‘Video synced interactive web visualisations’.

He shared an approach whereby video could be synced with data visualisations using javascript libraries.  Seeing examples of the visualisations in action was inspiring stuff – and while the code might have gone over my head, it definitely didn’t go over everyone’s and I know his presentation will have got people’s brains whirring with possibility!

Our penultimate presentation was from Hannah Davies, University of Derby, who shared her presentation ‘Multiple perspectives through video’.

Another beautifully constructed presentation and it was excellent to see some video examples of the work that Hannah and the media team at the University of Derby have been putting together.  Working to support careers and employability is a hot topic across institutions – from FE to HE, private to public sector – and Hannah showed that getting out there and making real connections for learners with video is a powerful tool.

Last up was Dr Stuart Jolly from Nottingham Trent University.  Stuart’s presentation was on ’20-ish ideas for using video in learning and teaching’ and he’d put together a video of all of his examples which was superb.  We’ll write them up with Stuart and post them on the blog later – his work showed how video can play such an active part in students’ learning.  From supporting the creation of learning communities, to building in opportunities for review and reflection to helping with critical analysis and personalising feedback.  Stuart’s video is well worth a watch!

Phew!  Lots and lots of ideas – and inspiring stuff from our brilliant community.  What a fantastic region this is for great ideas!

We always have the opportunity to go round the room to see if there are any other ideas, projects or connections people would like to make… and as ever, there were.  It helps get the conversations going for when we break for a cuppa and more cake… and there’s always a point during the afternoon where I take a moment to listen to the buzz of the room and appreciate what a strong community it is that we’re forming.  Brilliant!

Once we were fortified with more cake, tea and biccies, it was time for a demonstration of Box of Broadcasts from David Hopkins, University of Leicester.  David showed us just how easy Box of Broadcasts is to use and gave us the chance to consider its potential at our own institutions.  Because we have colleagues from several different institutions represented, David’s demo allowed us to talk more broadly about issues connected with overseas students and licensing, with the potential for tagging and retrieval of video, creation of playlists, easy embedding of clips as well as the reality of supporting a service like that.

And finally – in what was a packed programme! – we all worked together on putting together some collaborative documents.  I’ll share them as separate blog posts another day.  Essentially, we had three main areas to contribute to:

  1. What’s the point of video in the curriculum?
  2. What value does it add to learning?
  3. What best practice hints and tips have we got?

There were points that made me go ‘ah, not just me then’, points that made me go ‘hadn’t thought of that’, and points that just made me laugh!  Especially the ones about finger food and porridge!!  That’s the beauty of our group… we get to chat informally with our peers about the reality of our professional experiences.  Highs, lows, warts and all.  The shiny stuff is for conferences… our group is about our shared reality.    Talking of a shared professional experience, we are offering the opportunity for CMALT mentoring across the region, which I briefly mentioned at the end, and if anyone would like to talk to me further about it, please drop me an email to s.horrigan@derby.ac.uk.

Phewie!!!  Excellent to see old friends, meet new colleagues and strengthen our network.  Thanks to all who came and contributed in any way.

Our next meeting will probably be at the University of Nottingham in early July and we’ll be on the look out for presentation ideas around early June… so please keep an eye out for our call for presentations.

Sarah

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CALL FOR PRESENTATIONS – Spring EMLT meeting

Video wall image

Photo Credit: Bourguiboeuf via Compfight cc

Not long to go now until our Spring 2014 EMLT meeting!

It’s going to be held on the 2nd of April at the University of Derby from 13:00 to 16:00 with a buffet lunch available from 12:00.  Our theme this time is…

‘Video Killed the Radio Star’

… we’ll be thinking about all things digital video creativity.  Or rather, we’d like you to help us think about all things digital video creativity.  If you’d like to submit a proposal for a PechaKucha presentation then you can do at http://goo.gl/ZqIa8R – approx. 6 minutes, 20 slides on whatever you think might be relevant to the rest of the group on your work with digital video… from small scale creativity in the curriculum to doing things BIG!  From innovations to issues… we’d love to hear about it.  Use the form, submit an idea… share with the rest of us!

If you can get your ideas to us by Wednesday March 12th  then we can start to finalise the programme.

As ever, if you haven’t yet booked a place, please head over to our Eventbrite booking form at http://emltspring14.eventbrite.co.uk  – there’s a password for the booking form which is as follows:  em1t  (that’s a one instead of an ‘L’ in the middle).  It’s free to attend, there’s food available… and there are only a few places left… so get your skates on!

Look forward to seeing as many of you there as possible and sharing in the great work that’s going on in our region.

Sarah

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CALL FOR PRESENTATIONS!

'Always be curious' image

Photo Credit: Kevin Conor Keller via Compfight cc

The theme of our December East Midlands Learning Technologists’ meeting which will take place on the 11th of December at De Montfort University in Leicester is openness – Open learning, open sharing, open practice – and we need you!

We’d like to have some PechaKucha presentations from our community – 6 minute presentations with images – where you tell us about ‘open’.  Whether that’s involvement in MOOCs and other forms of open courses, how you’re building open practice into your work, open research or policy as well as stories of open collaboration across disciplines / institutions.

We don’t need much from you – just a few details and you’re good to go for the next meeting.  Just let us know on this simple form: http://goo.gl/4pjOPu by Friday 29th of November so we can get things organised, and that’d be great.

Oh, and if you haven’t yet booked a place, please complete the form on Eventbrite (it’s at https://www.eventbrite.com/event/9084418741).  As ever, you will need to enter the password to get in. This is: em1t  (emlt with the L replaced by a number 1)

Food and drink will be available on arrival at 12 in room 2.40

A map for the university can be found on their website and the Hugh Aston Building is number 18.
Let’s showcase and share some ideas!  

And maybe have a mince pie or two along the way!!

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EMLT meeting at ALT-C, September 11th 2013

Image of foggy trees for Autumn EMLT meeting report

A foggy day in September in the East Midlands

Apologies for the delay in writing something up for our last meeting – September some how whizzed by and suddenly we’re part of the way through October!

So, our meeting at ALT-C (the annual conference of the Association for Learning Technology) took place on the 11th of September at the fantastic venue of the University of Nottingham.  We had attendees from all over our region which was great to see and the fact that people came who weren’t attending the conference itself but had made a special effort to come along anyway was much appreciated and helped add to a positive buzz for our group.  Thank you!

Other than sharing sweets and biccies (food is always good / fun at our meetings!), it was good to catch-up with friendly faces from across the East Midlands.  As a group we talked about the role that special interest groups might play and some main issues were identified which we all felt were worth further exploration:

  • sharing tools and innovation
  • training / staff development
  • partnerships with students / understand the learners’ perspective
  • CMALT / FHEA mentoring
  • classroom technology
  • regional benchmarking
  • openness / MOOCs.

The overriding message was that everyone valued the regional nature of the group and this was what we wanted to build on.  We all felt that active themes for our meetings were more important than SIGs, because the meetings could be themed where collaborative partnerships / connections could be made and followed up after the event rather than splitting into sub-groups ahead of a meeting.  The suggestion that a register of experts was needed was made and this is a fantastic idea.  We have so many skills and so much experience in such a range of sectors in our region that we’d all love to be able to tap into our own network’s expertise and use our ‘local’ location to get together.  We’ll try to pull pulling it together in the next few months – so keep your eyes peeled for that!  Another terrific suggestion was the idea of us acting as critical friends for one another as well as building on collaborative relationships across our region – so at the next meeting we’ll be having some pecha kucha sessions where ideas can be shared and feedback given as well as the usual opportunity for networking.

I also asked who would be interested in writing for this blog as I’m keen that we let everyone know about the innovative and exciting work that’s going on in the East Midlands.  I had plenty of volunteers but we could always do with more… and if you’re interested in writing on topics related to learning technology and you’re based in the East Midlands… then please get in touch using the Google form we’ve set up.  I’ll try to get in touch with all volunteers in the next few weeks with further details!

I’m already looking forward to our next meeting which we’ll announce the details of shortly, but it’ll probably be on a Wednesday afternoon during the first couple of weeks of December.

Sarah

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