Tuesday, June 27, 2006

E-Learning & Health Informatics Conference at UWE

Today I attended a conference organised by the Faculty of Health and Social Care at the University of the West of England on E-learning and Health Informatics.

Proceedings were opened by Professor Rob Cuthbert, Deputy Vice Chancellor, who was followed by Professor Richard McCLatchey who described work on the EU funded Health-e-child project, a grid based project aiming to bring biomedical informatics into the clinical domain for paediatricians. He described the scope of the project and the use of grid computing.

The next speaker was Dr Martin Dyke from the Graduate school of Education at Southampton. He described their research group, approach to pedagogy and some current research projects. Much of the presentation examined the gap between the potential of the technology in education and the application and the tensions between passive and active learning and individual against societal learning. He described and demonstrated a real time, high end video system for the assessment of teaching students with remote camera control. He finished with an upbeat message about a "Fusion of Learning horizons".

Liz Falconer gave an overview of national strategies and priorities for elearning at a national level (JISC, DfES, HEA & research councils) and local (UWE) level. She described a range of strategies and practical tools which influence development.

The final speaker of the morning was Rob Bampfylde who described an demonstrated a range of web and mobile applications eg RSS, PDA, mobile phone, MP3 player etc) with applications for elearning.

It will be interesting to see how the developments talked about are put into practice.

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