PedRIO annual conference 2015

The conference ran alongside the 4th Centre for Recording Achievement International Seminar on ‘Researching and Evaluating Recording Achievement, Personal Development Planning and e-Portfolio’, which took place on the 16-17 April 2015.

Sessions were themed around six key areas (below) and based on research from across and between disciplines:

  • Education for sustainable development
  • Medical education
  • Masters level teaching
  • Spaces to think
  • Digital innovations
  • Inclusivity and student engagement.

Keynote speakers

The keynote speakers were: 

Dr Alison James

Who is the Associate Dean Learning and Teaching at the London College of Fashion, National Teaching Fellow 2014 and Principal Fellow Higher Education Academy.

Website:  Twitter: @alisonrjames

Keynote title: “Helping students become creative and reflective learners, what do we know, what do we need to know

Keynote abstract:

In the years since PDP became a formal part of the curriculum it has become like an old friend to many of us; one with many excellent qualities and intentions but also the old quirk or persistent habit that we gently try to manage for the sake of the relationship. This talk will open with a pen portrait of PDP as we know it and then go on to explore some of its specific challenges and opportunities – motivating engagement, blending on and offline activity, the dominance of writing and text-based reflection, assessment, to name but a few. As an advocate of creative and three-dimensional approaches to PDP I will argue that taking an object and material-based approach to PDP, informed by theory, can have dual impact; as an effective means of motivating student engagement with PDP and as a medium for researching that engagement. How such approaches fit in with, or complement, eportfolio activity will also be considered in relation to supporting autonomy, choice, ownership and personalisation in digital PDP spaces.

Professor Ron Barnett

Who is Emeritus Professor of Higher Education in the Department of Comparative and Lifelong Learning at University College London.

Keynote title: “Believing in the University”

Keynote abstract:

Can we believe in the university any longer? What would it mean to do so? Concepts such as truth, knowledge, critique and reason – the underpinnings of the Western university – now seem somewhat passé as a set of foundations of the university. But then, so it might be felt, this cluster of reason has simply been superseded by the cluster of utility, with its concepts of performance, impact, economic return, and the global economy. We believe in the university by understanding it, in short, as the entrepreneurial university. This idea is not to be repudiated as such but, in itself, it is an unduly limited and limiting way of believing in the university. Surely, in the twenty-first century, large sets of expectations and responsibilities are going to befall the university, concerned with – for instance – wellbeing, living with difference, global citizenship, social and civic engagement and public understanding. Is there here, in this cluster of otherness, the basis for a new way of believing in the university? Or is this in itself yet another short-sighted way of understanding the university? In my talk, I shall explore this terrain and offer general principles for believing afresh in the university, founded on the idea of feasible utopias; and I shall go on to offer a particular suggestion, which I call ‘the ecological university’.