Association for Learning Technology Online Newsletter
Issue 13 July 2008   Monday, July 21, 2008

ISSN 1748-3603

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Contents
Case studies
How avatars learn together: an immersive experience
Social networking: connect-ing students and staff
A social constructivist approach to the use of podcasts
Bridging the Digital Divide in the UK’s Greenest City
Project updates
Making the LEAP
ALT news
Chief Executive's Report
Last chance to book for ALT-C 2008!
ALT Workshops
JISC Updates
Web2Rights
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Past Issues
Issue 12 May 2008
May 6, 2008
Issue 11 January 2008
January 25, 2008
Issue 10 October 2007
October 19, 2007
Issue 9 July 2007
July 20, 2007
Issue 8 April 2007
April 20, 2007

More Issues »
Chief Executive's Report
by Seb Schmoller

Staffing changes
Louise Ryan, who has a background in journal and educational publishing started in the new role of Publications Officer (Web and Print) on 15 July. There is a brief biography of Louise on the ALT web site at www.alt.ac.uk/team.html.

Election of Trustees and Vice Chair
From the end of July onwards individual members and the representatives of organisational and sponsoring members will receive by post voting papers and election addresses for the election of two Trustees and the Vice-Chair of ALT. The election will be handled for ALT by Electoral Reform Services (ERS). The closing date for voting will be 3 September 2008 and members will be able to vote either by post or online. The result will be communicated to members prior to the ALT Annual General Meeting in Leeds on 10 September 2008. This is an important milestone for ALT, it being the first time that the Trustee and Vice-Chair vacancies have been contested since we decided to organise voting amongst our membership as a whole rather than just amongst those attending our conference.

A note of thanks to Paul Bacsich and John Slater
In September, Paul and John (who are respectively Chair of the ALT Publications Committee and Honorary Treasurer) will cease to be ALT Trustees under our rules, each having completed six year stints as Trustees. I place on record ALT’s thanks to them for their efforts.

New Honorary Treasurer for ALT
Last month, Fred Pickering, who is currently Chair of the ALT Further Education Committee was elected ALT’s Honorary Treasurer designate by the Trustees. He will take over from John Slater (see previous item) in September, and is working in tandem with John over the summer. Fred was until recently a Director of Barnsley College.

Harnessing Technology Strategy for English Education
In early July, Becta published a new version of the Harnessing Technology Strategy for education in England. The strategy makes new and positive references to learning technology and contains some extracts from the Tangible Benefits of eLearning Report that we distributed to members earlier this year. The full strategy can be accessed at http://preview.tinyurl.com/5joeqq.

Consultation responses

Since ALT-N 61 we have responded to:
  • the DIUS informal adult learning consultation;
  • the Higher Education Academy consultation on its strategic plan;
  • the e-Skills UK consultation on its strategic plan, in collaboration with the E-Learning Network;
  • the DIUS consultation on HE at work.

Nearly all our consultation responses are published at www.alt.ac.uk/documents.html.

ALT-C 2009
We are proud to announce that Professors Gilly Salmon and Tom Boyle will co-chair ALT-C 2009 in Manchester between 8 and 10 September 2009. The title of ALT-C 2009 will be "In dreams begins responsibility: evidence, choices and change". A call for programme committee members will be issued in the next month.

Getting directly involved in ALT
We delayed issuing a call for people to express an interest in serving as member of one ALT’s four operational committees (Further Education, Membership Services, Publications, and Research) until the summer whilst we clarified the number and focus of the vacancies on each committee. Please be on the look out for it.

CMALT
We are making steady progress in enrolling applicants onto CMALT at the 50% preferential rate supported with our thanks by a generous grant from JISC. The official closing date for registrations is 31 July 2008 and we now have confirmation from JISC that we are able to extend this in the first instance until the end of September. Those registered will then have until 31 December 2008 to submit their CMALT portfolios for assessment.

While there may be further offers in the future, we would strongly encourage you to take advantage of the significant saving and support available under the terms of the current offer and not to delay your own or colleagues’ registrations. The best way to keep informed about the JISC-supported scheme – the aim of which is to build up a critical mass of CMALT-recognised members – is to join our low volume jiscmail list from www.alt.ac.uk/cmalt.

Success in ESRC/EPSRC bid
The London Knowledge Lab (a collaboration between the Institute of Education and Birkbeck) in a multi-partner consortium that includes LSE, NIACE, London Metropolitan University, and ALT, has won a £1m+ ESRC/EPSRC award in Technology Enhanced Learning. The aim of the project is to develop a Learning Design Support Environment to enable teachers to lead the discovery of innovative pedagogical designs that exploit the potential of Technology Enhanced Learning. ALT's role will be as a dissemination channel for the project, including updates in the ALT Newsletter and Digest, and as a participant in the project's Advisory Group.

Seb Schmoller
14/7/2008


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