Saturday, November 23, 2019

#UFITrust Showcase Event London 21/11/2019

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It does not seem that long ago that I met with Donald Clark , Bob Harrison and assorted others in a meeting room borrowed from City and Guilds in London to offer some advice on what kinds of activity and what models should be adopted around distributing the funds from the UFI Trust.

It is great that it has gone from strength to strength - and very timely - in England the monies arrived just as public funding dried up for innovation in educational technology and the Further Education Learning Technology Action Group started looking around for models and partners to deliver more blended learning and assessment in vocational learning. To some extent the UFI Trust monies have filled a gap that might otherwise have come from BECTA , Jisc or other agencies that had funding pots to encourage innovative practice.  There is now a strong and growing legacy.

In Scotland while there has been no such drivers in the vocational space, we have been able to adopt some of the out puts from the UFI Trust and a number of Colleges have benefited from funding for a range of projects. But a good model for both current #digitalambition work in Scotland and broader UK #CollegeFutures work to take a careful note of.

It was great to see projects past and present on display and meet some old friends and colleagues.  It is good to see those who innovate in education being constantly resilient and inventive  - and great too to meet new people and projects trying to shake things up.  This is a list of all this years crop of projects .

Note these are mixture of private and public organisations - this is seed funding for sustainable projects so different from some of the more speculative experimental projects that may have been funded in past with EU Monies. The projects are funded here on their basis to be revenue generating and self sustaining when UFI funding ends.

City of Glasgow College have a number of projects funded with #UFITrust funds past, live and in development with a range of commercial partners.

Here are my own take a ways - some from wandering around the stands and some from networking at event. 

1. The great work done by Open University with Cisco - is open and available to any College . I am going to bring them up and see how we can get these materials used more widely. These are free.

2. STEM resources - I've come across Learning Science  and these materials before and I made some high level sector introductions . I don't think things moved on from there - so will bring them up for a conversation - their simulated lab materials are used widely in the HE Sector. They now have a special offer for maths and engineering.  Interested in price point.


3. Aftab and ADA Bolton College's digital assistant - just goes from strength to strengh - I'll shine a light on this again - I think model is great. The struggle in institutions is that this is so new and cuts across lots of silos - challenge is not technology but culture and ownership of data - that is the barrier to getting more projects like this moving.  ( we have some interesting conversations happening with Google and Amazon services in background)



4. I like the 'engineering apprentices mate' materials  nice simple training materials . I'll take these links back to relevant College team.  Looking for website that takes me straight to the materials.

5. If you are a college teaching dental nurses , dental receptionists then CHOMP looks great and from a very passionate team - turning learning into gaming.

I had some great chats around the room and would be great to get a similar showcase event in Scotland -waving too at Vikki and https://set.et-foundation.co.uk/etf/ who are doing great job with focus on digital learning skills for College lecturers in England.

Always happy to make introductions to those in Scottish sector who are willing and able pick up opportunities.

All the projects are worth a look , I've just sampled the ones that caught my eye.

And I've a few other leads to follow up. 

Wednesday, November 20, 2019

#UNESCO , #Openscot Email to My Daughter.







 I got some great news yesterday and I tried to explain what it means  to my daughter who is in 5th year in a Scottish Secondary school. I thought worth sharing with a wider audience. I know some organisations that regulate teachers and lecturers like the General Teaching Council for Scotland and the Higher Education Academy, as well as those that fund education developments across the public sector will now have to take notice. It's great news for learners across the world. 

How will we now embrace this in Scotland ?

In my immediate domain one for Colleges Scotland and College Regional Boards to sit up and take notice - this needs to be embedded in practice. We've already started at City of Glasgow College. 

MJ , 
You might remember I disappeared to Malta, Slovenia and Poland among other places over the last few years. I wasn't having a holiday.
This is what I was helping to draft. https://unesdoc.unesco.org/in/rest/annotationSVC/Attachment/attach_import_b1276dcd-237e-488f-8b37-3c8847cb2e31 

I was invited as the co founder of Open Scotland along with Lorna Campbell of Edinburgh University - as what they call domain experts. We were standing on the shoulders of giants from the Association of Learning Technology and early work done by Jisc and many others across the education sector in Scotland and the rest of the U.K. , especially those involved in the #oer , open education resource , series of conferences. 
At the heart of it is a really simple principle.

One that Scottish Education should find easy to embrace.

'That publicly funded learning and teaching materials should be open and shareable.' 
One day, this will make teaching and learning much easier for everyone.
For you, it’s an example of a real UN resolution and now you know someone that helped shape one. It’s just as complex as the resolutions you debate in the schools model UN.

Perhaps you can show it to your teachers and maybe they will start working to share learning materials with colleagues in other schools , colleges and universities.

It was approved to go forward yesterday ;-)



Tuesday, November 12, 2019

#DigitalAmbition City of Glasgow College


I plugged these sessions as they rolled out,  I am part of national consultation group . Yesterday, the roadshow came to City of Glasgow College and we had a good attendance from both the College and Colleges across Scotland. 

I know that following this roadshow that the findings from all of the roadshows will be tested again with the wider community and opened up for comment. I hope everyone is ready to chip in their ideas - there was a lot of good thinking going on yesterday. 


a group of people sitting at a table in a room
Ken Thomson OBE leading event cc Tom Duff City of Glasgow College 
There was a lot of good use of feedback technology in the workshop and was pleasing to see http://www.allourideas.org/ used as part of consultation - if you want an ordinal list in a survey great way to do it - driven by Adaptive Comparative Judgement.



Tongue in cheek but perhaps one of our ambitions may be to find out what Scottish FE staff use in terms of social media #digitalambition , if it's Friends Reunited and MSN Messenger -we have a journey to travel - but clearly from engagement around the #digitalambition tag , at the moment perhaps it's not Twitter ?