Thursday, 31 May 2012

HNC and Facebook

I came back from holiday yesterday to two pieces of good news. The HNC in Computing was validated while I was away. It was almost there before I left, but it was great to see it put to bed. Don't forget to follow developments via the blog.

The other piece of good news was that SQA had lifted restrictions on staff use of social media while I was away. Like many educational bodies, SQA restricted the use of sites like Facebook and Youtube, but (nearly) all of the restrictions have now been removed.

Mike Russell, the Cabinet Secretary for Education, has spoken many times about the need for schools and colleges to loosen the controls on social media, so it's great to see SQA lead by example. Services such as Youtube have become fantastic educational resources, and now includes an SQA channel.

The Computing team have used social media for a long time now (this blog being an example) but the lifting of these restrictions gives us more opportunities to use social media to engage with teachers and lecturers and other stakeholders. Watch this space.

Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Computing and IT Conference (Scotland's Colleges Event)

Scotland's Colleges are organising and hosting this years Computing and IT Conference on Tuesday 19th June.  The conference is aimed at Computing, IT and Digital Media practicators and will be held at Scotland's Colleges premises at Castle Business Park in Stirling.

The purpose of the event is detailed below:

The challenges currently facing Computing, IT and Digital Media staff in Scotland’s Colleges are significant, with continual demands on staff to keep abreast of an evolving curriculum, emerging technologies and new subjects as well as addressing issues relating to retention, achievement and progression. The community has made significant efforts to address these challenges and continue to do so.

The following URL provides more information including links to the programme for the day, online booking and contact details.
Please note that this is not an SQA organised event so all queries in relation to this should be directed to the events co-ordinator (details available in the link above).

Thursday, 3 May 2012

NPA Mobile Technology survey

Jim Krieger, of Anniesland College, is leading the development of these NPAs, and has asked for my help in promoting a survey that he is conducting to get feedback on his proposals.

The questionnaire should take about 10 minutes to complete and is in relation to four Mobile Technology awards which we hope to validate in June:

  • NPA Mobile Technology at SCQF level 4
  • NPA Mobile Technology at SCQF level 5
  • NPA Mobile Technology at SCQF level 6
  • NC Mobile Technology at SCQF level 5.

The questionnaire can be found at here. Jim would like responses by 9 May if possible.

NPA Professional Computer Fundamentals

I was asked by Iain Shand, of Cardonald College, to post something on this blog about a survey he is conducting.

Iain is leading the development of a new NPA, which will be linked to the Microsoft Technology Associate qualification. The NPA, which will be at SCQF level 6,  will cover the fundamentals of networking, security and server administration.

Iain would like your feedback on his proposed award. Please complete the short survey here. The survey closes on 19 May.

Visit to centres

I visited Cardonald College and Clydebank College on Tuesday. I taught in both centres, so it was a particular pleasure to return to them. Both campuses have been significantly improved since my time there. I thought that they both looked great.

I was visiting Cardonald to meet with Morag Robertson to help with a specific issue with a candidate. I think we managed to resolve the issue. My visit to Clydebank was to meet with Graeme Downey... and enjoy the college's outstanding training dining room. I also had an opportunity to talk to a class of HNC Computing students about their experiences on the course. We had a particularly interesting discussion about the examination.

As I've stated before, me and my team are happy to visit centres. Please contact me if you would like any of us to visit your school, college or training centre.