ESCalate Bulletin No. 45 (11 December 2009)


  1. Introducing our new staff
  2. Second Annual ESCalate student conference - registration is open
  3. 2010 ESCalate/JISC HE in FE conference
  4. A new series of E-Learning workshops for the Spring
  5. The First TEAN Teacher Education Annual Conference - a call for papers
  6. Newly funded Pedagogy and Practice Projects
  7. Hot Topics - apply for funding
  8. Sharing Ideas - grants of up to £500 available
  9. National Teaching Fellows - a call for nominations
  10. New student pages
  11. Improving teaching and learning for international students: Turning aspiration into action
  12. The ESCalate team have been out and about

Introducing our new staff

We would like to introduce you to five new members of staff working with us at Bristol

Dr Jocelyn Wishart joins us as a Senior Academic Adviser, she will be involved in the strategic planning for the centre and as the Academic Coordinator for our grant funded projects.

Julietta Schoenmann - Communications Manager, Julietta has taken over from Susanna Dammann to oversee our events and editing of our newsletter.

Dee Miles - Projects/Web Coordinator, Dee has taken over from Anne Anderson as the ESCalate "hub". General enquiries and phone calls will  be answered by Dee. She is also in charge of any enhancements to the website.

Genna West - Graduate Projects Officer, Genna is tasked with populating the student pages of our website and coordinating any student enquiries and projects.

Szerenke Kovacs - Research and Development Assistant, Szerenke has joined us to assist Fiona Hyland on ESCalate research projects.

In addition to this Liz Hankinson has taken on the role as Subject Centre Manager

For more information and contact details for any of the team please go to

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Second Annual ESCalate student conference - registration is open

Stop press! We are holding our second Student Conference at The University of Glamorgan on Friday 16th April 2010, and the theme this year is Students as Stakeholder. The conference will explore the contributions that students can make to enhancing their own experience: from curriculum design to the classroom to assessment methodologies. Aaron Porter - Vice President (HE) of the NUS - has confirmed that he will give the keynote speech so it promises to be a fascinating and rewarding event.  

We're especially keen to celebrate best practice while examining ways in which change has been and might be brought about through student engagement and action. So, would you be interested in reflecting on your experience and sharing it with a wider audience? If so then please do get in touch!

We're inviting you to submit your proposal as soon as possible - as an individual, or part of a group/team. Whether you are an undergraduate or half way through your PhD we'd love to hear from you. You can present your ideas as a poster or perhaps you would like to lead a session on a topic of your choice? We particularly welcome student speakers, of course, but tutors leading a group are welcome too, as last year.

Registration is open right now so what are you waiting for? Send in your proposals ( and make sure you're at one of the most interesting events in the 2010 student calendar.

Please download the attached flyer and distribute this to anyone interested in attending

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2010 ESCalate/JISC HE in FE conference

The ESCalate/JISC HE in FE Conference, Inspiration for Practice will be held on May 26th 2010 at the Trident Centre Warwickshire and the main theme will focus on professional concerns for HE in FE practitioners regarding questions around their status and raising their professional standing - a topic of immediate importance for all HE in FE practitioners.

The keynote speaker will be John Storan, Director of Continuum at the University of East London, an international authority on widening participation strategy and practice. Sarah Knight, JISC Programme Manager (e-learning) will present on institutional approaches to curriculum design and transforming curriculum delivery. Diane Thurston, Manager of the Success North Centre for Excellence in Teacher Training at Newcastle College with specialist interest in mentoring and teachers' learning will present a paper. Rebecca Turner, Educational Researcher and Developer, HELP CETL at the University of Plymouth will speak on the emerging professional identities of HE in FE lecturers.

We welcome proposals for presentations and posters round the theme of professional concerns for those working in HE in FE. So if you are interested in reflecting on your experience and sharing it with a wider audience then please get in touch.

We're inviting you to submit your proposal as soon as possible - as an individual, or part of a group/team.

Registration is open right now so please send in your proposals to and make sure you're at one of the most interesting HE in FE events in the 2010 calendar!

Please download the attached flyer and distribute this to anyone interested in attending

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A new series of E-Learning workshops for the Spring

We are in the process of organising a series of E-Learning workshops specifically aimed at Teacher Educators in the Learning and Skills Sector (HE in FE). The workshops will focus upon the use of an e-portfolio system, PebblePad/Reflect, to support reflective learning and the personal and professional development of new and existing teachers. The workshops will include sessions led by Teacher Educators who are e-portfolio practitioners, hands-on activities led by CETT and IfL staff and opportunities for conversation and networking. There will be much more information about them on the events page of our website very soon. But here's a taste

February - West Midlands venue - theme, ESOL/Skills for Life

March - Plymouth - theme, Developing Communities of Teacher Educators

April - Newcastle - theme, Professional Formation and QTLS

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The First TEAN Teacher Education Annual Conference - a call for papers

Building on our five successful ITE conferences presented for ESCalate, TEAN, the Teacher Education Advancement Network presents its first teacher education Annual Conference at Glasgow Caledonian University on Friday, May 21st 2010. Glasgow Caledonian is conveniently located in the centre of the city, with easy access by air, rail and road from anywhere in the country. It should prove to be an excellent venue for delegates and presenters from Scotland, Northern Ireland, Wales and England.

The title of our conference this year is ‘The Importance of Education’. This all-embracing title is deliberately chosen to inspire us to consider the value of what we offer through our work and we look forward to your inspiration expressed in a myriad ways through this conference. Particularly important as always is the impact that our work has on practice and in our conference we hope to encourage delegates to take away good ideas to use in their institutions. The conference is aimed at all practitioners working in teacher education from the four countries of the UK and all other agencies with a professional interest in teacher education. It could well also resonate with colleagues from the international scene. Our focus is on school, however, transferable knowledge from other sectors is most welcome.

The Call for Papers for this year’s conference suggests four possible types of submission. These are: presentations, workshops, round tables, and posters. Please note that it is essential to follow the detailed guidelines for the submission of papers and we have provided templates which we ask contributors to use. These are available at (or by e-mail from

Telephone contact: 01524 385459 (internal 5759)

Deadline for submission is January 22nd 2010

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Newly funded Pedagogy and Practice Projects

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Hot Topics - apply for funding

Hot Topics are short pieces of writing outlining a eureka! moment in your teaching and learning career. They are aimed at making a concise contribution to solving a problem or a challenge, and invites dialogue on a current topic. A Hot Topic discussion enhances teaching or learning in some simple, imaginative and creative way: something that is essentially 'of the moment'.

Open to teachers and students, we have 20 x £50 to give away. All you need to do is log into your ESCalate account and apply online and we will get back to you very soon with the outcome.

For more details see the website page

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Sharing Ideas - grants of up to £500 available

Sharing Ideas is a fund aimed at enhancing teaching and learning by encouraging staff in Education departments to take existing ideas that are working well within a module, a programme or with a cohort of students, and to develop a dissemination strategy to encourage the ideas' adoption more widely within an institution as well as the wider Education community.

All you need to do is log into your ESCalate account and apply online all the details are on our website - Sharing Ideas

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National Teaching Fellows - a call for nominations

On our website are details of the National Teaching Fellows awards for 2009

NTFS Individual Awards

The Individual Award recognises and rewards individual excellence in teaching in higher education in England and Northern Ireland. Further information about the award holders is available from the individual awards homepage.

NTFS Project Strand

The project strand of the National Teaching Fellowship Scheme (NTFS) presents opportunities for higher education institutions to work with National Teaching Fellows to build on current expertise for their own benefit and that of the wider higher education sector. Teams will be able to bid for funds of up to £200,000 for use over a period of up to three years.

National Teaching Fellows  - The NTFS Individual Awards 2010 Call for Nominations is now open. The deadline for receipt of electronic nominations is Wednesday 3 February 2010 (12:00 noon). Please see HEA website for more details.
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New student pages

The student pages are under construction.  So far we have written a piece entitled ‘why study education?’ for students who may be thinking of entering into the field of education.  We are also in the process of updating the employability pages and providing resources to help students study efficiently.  The student pages now include some interesting Twitter links so that students can study and socialise online at the same time. 

We are experimenting with a more interactive social bookmarking tool called Diigo.  A ‘tag cloud’ has been imported onto the student resources page, where key words link to a list of useful resources for students.  Students will not only be able to access these resources, but also highlight key information, read comments and make their own comments to aid other users of the resource.

Keep checking to keep up-to-date with the new and improved student section.

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Improving teaching and learning for international students: Turning aspiration into action

An ESCalate/ITALIS staff development workshop on Tuesday 11th May 2010.

ESCalate are working with ITALIS a new national initiative centred on Improving Teaching and Learning for International Students. ITALIS is funded by the Prime Minister's Initiative and the Higher Education Academy with support from the UK Council for International Student Affairs.

As part of the goal of improving teaching practice for international students, we are holding an event on 11th May 2010 in the Graduate School of Education, University of Bristol. Themes for the day are: practical approaches to supervising; and effective assessment of and feedback to international students.

Jude Carroll, ITALIS team member, and co-author with Janette Ryan in 2005 of the highly influential book 'Teaching International Students:  Improving Learning for All' will run a workshop on assessment and feedback.

Dr Sheila Trahar of the University of Bristol will talk about the supervision of international postgraduate students - a topic about which she can offer insights drawn from both practice and research.  Sheila, the ESCalate Academic Consultant on internationalisation, wrote the popular Discussion Paper on ‘Teaching and Learning: the International Higher Education Landscape’

There is no charge for the event.

We hope that the workshop will appeal to practitioners looking for support in this area. You can register for the event by following this link:

A full programme will be published shortly but in the meantime if you have any queries then please don't hesitate to contact Fiona Hyland on   tel: 0117 3314323.

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The ESCalate team have been out and about

UCET 2009

Members of the Escalate team attended the annual UCET conference in Leicester in November. It was an excellent conference with pivotal keynote speeches, more details of the presentations and seminars can be found on the UCET website .

Research and Scholarly Activity Workshop, Stockport College, 4th December 2009

Engagement in Scholarly Activity is now a mandatory requirement for those working in Further Education. Many colleagues in this sector are also delivering Higher Education programmes as part of their teaching commitments. FE teachers are required to become members of the Institute for Learning (IfL) and commit to recording their continuing professional development, showing evidence that engagement in CPD activities has been of positive benefit to their teaching practice and experience of their learners. The IfL identify a range of CPD activities which include reading relevant journals or reviewing books, attending training courses or formal study, peer review, observation and shadowing and other professional development activities.

Colleagues teaching Higher Education programmes within Further Education Colleges in addition to fulfilling IfL requirements might also be expected to emulate their fellow-practitioners teaching in universities, by engaging in research as part of their own professional development and to keep up to date with developments in their subject areas. The HEFCE list a range of Scholarly Activity including conference/event attendance, consultancy to industry, curriculum development that involves literature searching/work with a university, Higher qualifications and Research projects. HE in FE colleagues have the opportunity to enhance their professional standing through the Higher Education Academy’s  Professional Recognition Scheme and associated Professional Standards Framework.

In busy teaching environments scholarly activity and/or research might appear removed from everyday priorities but when constructively aligned with practice and professional development engagement  with the sorts of activities listed above, can bring enormous benefits to teaching and learning and provide an enhanced sense of professional identity. Quality assurance regimes associated with both Further and Higher Education increasingly demand evidence that teachers are committed to and supported in their professional updating. Engagement in research activities as part of this updating can confer benefits at the Institutional level satisfying and often exceeding quality assurance metrics and indicators.

A recent event held at Stockport College brought together practitioners and managers from the HE in FE sector to discuss and showcase scholarly activity and research as a vital means of enhancing professional identity and recognition and how these activities can  provide benefits to teachers, learners and institutions.

Practitioners were asked to identify and define scholarly activity before a series of invited speakers told their own stories as to how engagement with research activities, some funded by the HELP-CETL and HEA Subject Centres, had led to positive changes in their practice and even job roles. Colleagues were given guidelines and pointers to potential sources of research and CPD funding and dissemination opportunities. Managers in parallel sessions were invited to contribute to a discussion as to how a Research ethos might be constructed and supported within institutions. The group also received guidance on how research projects might be managed within the HE in FE context and how colleges might benefit from practitioners engagement with scholarly activity and research.

ESCalate offers several funding opportunities which support research, professional updating and dissemination of good practice within the Education discipline focus and beyond. Delegates had the opportunity to hear about ESCalate-funded/supported activities and take away a variety of publications.

Colleagues were also informed about a new initiative by the JISC Regional Support Centre Northwest and the HEA English Subject Centre (see below).

Research and scholarly activity network to support you in taking things from here…

Got this far but unsure how to put things into practice?

The JISC Regional Support Centre Northwest [] and The Higher Education Academy English Subject Centre [ are working together to develop ways to support you in your research and scholarly activities.

We aim to establish a network of support to:

·         Help you develop your research ideas

·         Work with you to identify your support needs  –  and find ways to meet   these                         

·         Offer mentoring and periodic workshops / input from a range of  contacts

·         Give you confidence in what you’re doing

·         Build up your contacts and opportunities for collaboration

·         Help you get familiar with what’s needed to get you published and support you in doing it

We will be meeting up in the next couple of weeks after this 4th December Scholarly Activity Workshop to plan how we will organise ourselves and to listen to  what  participants want.  If you’re interested in getting involved – either now or at some later date – please get in touch. 

Please contact – Hilary Thomas:              

or Candice Satchwell:    

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