Festival of Computing
  • Online delivery

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The University of Plymouth, in collaboration with Computing at School (CAS), is running a virtual conference, the Festival of Computing, on 5 March 2021 from 9:30am – 4:00pm.

This will be a multi-track conference for primary and secondary teachers, with workshops for GCSE and A-level students running alongside.

The aim of the conference is to share current opportunities available to teachers in computing education from Primary level through to Higher Education and highlight to students some of the opportunities available in the computing industry.

  • Primary Teacher Track and Secondary Teacher Track events are booked via CAS. 
  • Student Track (GCSE and A Level) events are booked via the University.

Events are grouped by category below so please select the relevant category, click to expand the text and sign up for the sessions you're interested in using the individual links provided. Full details are on the programme via the above link.

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Today's events

Programme and booking

Keynote (Teachers only)

09:30 | Keynote

Speakers: Beverly Clarke, Dr Shirley Atkinson + keynote - Julia Adamson

Sign up: https://community.computingatschool.org.uk/events/8909


Primary Teacher Track

10:00 | Barefoot Computing

Speaker: Sarah Zaman

What will you gain: You will find out about the range of resources and support Barefoot Computing offers and how to access these resources.

Sign up: https://community.computingatschool.org.uk/events/8902


11:00 | CAS Communities - Microbit and GoBubble

Speakers: Computing at School/Microbit/GoBubble

What will you gain: In this session you will get an overview of CAS Communities of Practice, how they dock into the National Centre for Computing Education (NCCE) and how CAS can support you in your teaching career.

Sign up: https://community.computingatschool.org.uk/events/8903


12:00 | NCCE Computing Hub - NCCE Teach Computing and Computer Hub Programme

Speaker: Mark Williams (Truro Hub)

What will you gain: This session will cover the support available to primary schools in delivering Computing and Computer Science at Key Stages 1 and 2 via the NCCE Teach Computing and Computing Hub Programme.

Sign up: https://community.computingatschool.org.uk/events/8904


13:00 | STEM Ambassadors Hub - Using STEM Ambassadors to support curriculum delivery

Speaker: Sam Ansell (CSW)

What will you gain: Get an update on the STEM Ambassador programme, its remit and impact, and hear directly from a STEM Ambassador as to what they can bring to the classroom.

Sign up: https://community.computingatschool.org.uk/events/8905


14:00 | Ed Tech Demonstrator School - Ed Tech Strategy for Primary Schools: beyond COVID

Speaker: Giles Hill

What will you gain: A set of key considerations for planning EdTech development in a school or schools

Sign up: https://community.computingatschool.org.uk/events/8906


Student Track (GCSE and A Level)

10:00 | Select from either Careers - Computing and Me OR Cybersecurity Lecture and CyberFirst


Careers - Computing and Me: What is a career in Computing really about?

Speaker: Pippa Waller, University of Plymouth

What will you gain: Hear about the possibilities open to you with a Computing degree and get some top tips from former Computing students alongside our Careers Consultant, Pippa Waller.

Sign up: https://plymouthuniversity.secure.force.com/pmtx/evt__Conf_Detail?id=a136700000WZhU1


Cybersecurity Lecture and CyberFirst (NCSC)

Speaker 1: Rory Hopcraft "Cryptography - Cracking the Code"

Speaker 2: Patrick B (CyberFirst) "Cyber Defence Against the Dark Arts (CyberFirst by NCSC)

What will you gain: 

1. This session will start by introducing the key themes in cryptography before moving on to explore the rich history of cryptography, paying particular attention to the ‘Cracking the Enigma Code’ during WWII. 

2. Staying ahead of the hackers in a digital world is difficult enough. But how could anyone get a job in keeping other people safe too? Listen to this talk to learn a little more about how an intelligence agency is helping students find their hidden cyber security powers.

Sign up: https://plymouthuniversity.secure.force.com/pmtx/evt__Conf_Detail?id=a136700000WZhU6


11:00 | Select from either Big Data/Recommendation Algorithms OR Cybersecurity Escape Room + Qufaro


Big Data/Recommendation Algorithms - If Romeo and Juliet were friends on Facebook...

Speaker: Marco Palomino

What will you gain: Computer systems that make recommendations are known as recommender systems. In this session, we will introduce the basics behind recommender systems and then cover the most basic recommendation algorithms available.

Sign up: https://plymouthuniversity.secure.force.com/pmtx/evt__Conf_Detail?id=a136700000WZhUG


Cybersecurity Escape Room + Qufaro

Speaker 1: Rory Hopcraft "Cryptography – Cracking the Code” (activity)

Speaker 2: Julia Humphries (Qufaro) "Developing the Cyber Talent Pool via the CyberEPQ"

What will you gain: This session will follow on from Rory's earlier talk as well as touching on Qufaro, their course and studying the CyberEPQ.

Sign up: https://plymouthuniversity.secure.force.com/pmtx/evt__Conf_Detail?id=a136700000WZhUQ


12:00 | Artificial Intelligence - building machines that think for themselves

Speaker: David Walker, University of Plymouth

What will you gain: The webinar will focus on Artificial Intelligence (AI). You will learn what it is, where you may have used it without realising and why it’s one of the biggest challenges facing computing professionals.

Sign up: https://plymouthuniversity.secure.force.com/pmtx/evt__Conf_Detail?id=a136700000WZhUf


13:00 | The National Museum of Computing (TNMOC) - Retro Coding: use a BBC emulator to make a game of snake

Speaker: Anne-Marie (TNMOC)

What will you gain: You will have an opportunity to use an online BBC emulator to create a game of snake. Can you code the game and get the highest score by the end of the session?

Sign up: https://plymouthuniversity.secure.force.com/pmtx/evt__Conf_Detail?id=a136700000WZhUk

Note: Access to a laptop or PC is required for this event.


14:00 | Coding Challenge

Speakers: Vivian Hocking / Dr Shirley Atkinson, University of Plymouth

What will you gain: In this session we will review the role of JavaScript in dynamic web pages and also thrown down a challenge for you.

Sign up: https://plymouthuniversity.secure.force.com/pmtx/evt__Conf_Detail?id=a136700000WZhUp



Secondary Teacher Track

10:00 | An overview of Isaac Computer Science and Discover Digital at PwC

Speaker 1: Becci Peters (Isaac Computer Science)

Speaker 2: Evie Sharma (PwC)

1. An overview of Isaac Computer Science: The session will explain what the Isaac CS platform is and how to use it as a teacher.

2. Discover Digital at PwC: Opportunities for you and your students with a leading technology employer.

Sign up: https://community.computingatschool.org.uk/events/8870


11:00 | CAS Communities - Neon Engineering and The National Museum of Computing (TNMOC)

Speaker 1: Dan Powell (Neon Engineering) "Neon - Brilliant Engineering Inspiration For Your Students" 

Speaker 2: Anne-Marie (TNMOC) "From Turing to Smartphone - building your students understanding of Computing at TNMOC"

What will you gain: There will be a talk from Neon Engineering about career opportunities for your students, and The National Museum of Computing will be demonstrating a walkthrough of their remote learning resources.

Sign up: https://community.computingatschool.org.uk/events/8871


12:00 | STEM Ambassador Hub - Using STEM Ambassadors to support curriculum delivery

Speaker: Sam Ansell (CSW)

What will you gain: Get an update on the STEM Ambassador programme, its remit and impact and hear directly from a STEM Ambassador as to what they can bring to the classroom.

Sign up: https://community.computingatschool.org.uk/events/8899


13:00 | NCCE Computing Hub - NCCE Teach Computing and Computer Hub Programme

Speaker: Mark Williams

What will you gain: This session will cover the support available to secondary schools in delivering Computing and Computer Science at Key Stages 3 and 4 via the NCCE Teach Computing and Computing Hub programme. This session will also cover the support available for schools who do not currently offer GCSE Computer Science but would like to do so.

Sign up: https://community.computingatschool.org.uk/events/8900


14:00 | EdTech Demonstrator School - EdTech demo introduction and tester webinar: How to run CS on a Chromebook session

Speaker: Claire Buckler

What will you gain: This session will outline the free support that is available from the EdTech Demonstrator initiative and have a 30 minute taster webinar on running Computer Science on a Chromebook.

Sign up: https://community.computingatschool.org.uk/events/8901


Event photography and video

Please be aware that some of the University of Plymouth's public events (both online and offline) may be attended by University staff, photographers and videographers, for capturing content to be used in University online and offline marketing and promotional materials, for example webpages, brochures or leaflets. If you, or a member of your group, do not wish to be photographed or recorded, please let a member of staff know.