Home > Conference, CPD > Connecting For Learning, 11th December

Connecting For Learning, 11th December

This conference jointly run by JISC RSC & College’s Scotland focussed on how technology can support learning.

The programme included keynotes, ‘teachmeet’ style sharing sessions, and optional workshops and seminars.

The conference was opened by Marie Dougan, a former teacher and now professional genealogist who took us through the changing technology she’d encountered in her career, from BBC Micros to Moocs. This highlighted the rapid technological change that has affected education and life in general over the past 30 years.

In the morning there were several workshops to choose from including sessions on e-books, social networking and managing information overload.

The afternoon sessions included developing apps, using video effectively and using QR codes & augmented reality.

In between the main sessions there were short pecha-kucha or ‘teachmeet’ presentations on a variety of topics including educational games, movement analysis for sports and blogging. Some of the sessions were provided remotely via Adobe Connect.

I enjoyed the conference, however it confirmed my fears that Further Education is behind the curve in terms of some of the innovations I’ve seen in schools. Most of the topics I saw have been featured at other conferences I’ve been to and some of the ideas were several years old. This isn’t a big problem, as any kind of change can be beneficial, however it underlines that FE just isn’t as adaptable or flexible as it needs to be in a competitive education sector. The FE sector in Scotland is currently distracted by mergers and cuts, and this has left ‘teaching and learning’ and educational technology left in the background until the upset subsides.

On the whole though, it’s good to see there are pockets of innovation happening and a few lone souls battling against the tide to make learning relevant in current times. It reaffirms my belief that educational change doesn’t come from policy, but through individuals selflessly sharing with others.

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Categories: Conference, CPD
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