Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Scotland Needs a Learning Revolution

Jack McConnell yesterday announced the Futures Project, focusing on the challenges that we face in the next 20 years. One of the main messages of his speech was that learning is one of Scotland's great strengths and it can answer many of the problems that Scotland is facing, including an ageing population and a high proportion of young people in the NEET group.

For full details of the Futures Project, click here.

Using wikis in schools

Futurelab recently produced a report [PDF] on the use of wikis in schools. The report highlights the educational applications of wikis, emphasising their collaborative nature and describing wikis as "knowledge building which provide a deeply authentic experience for young learners". The report includes a small experiment with a group of 13-14 year olds in England.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Results from Internet safety survey are now available

SQA recently carried out a large-scale survey into teachers' and lecturers' (and others') attitudes towards Internet safety. Over 500 people completed the questionnaire. The Internet safety blog has a link to the results which make interesting reading.

Friday, May 05, 2006

E-Assessment Question Conference

The E-Assessment Question conference is held every year in London but yesterday there was the first Scottish conference held in the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Glasgow. SQA figured prominently, with Anton Colella (the Chief Executive) delivering the keynote speech and Martyn Ware (Business Manager in charge of e-assessment) outlining SQA's e-assessment strategy between now and 2010.

Anton's talk was particularly interesting since he described SQA's approach to e-assessment and explained how it linked to key Scottish developments such as A Curriculum for Excellence.

There are plans to make this an annual event.

Monday, May 01, 2006

ICT Increasingly Critical to Education

The technology company Dell has released details of a survey on ICT in education. Click here for more details.

Investment in Scotland's Colleges

Scotland’s colleges are to receive increased investment for 2006-07 for growth in student numbers, increased working with schools pupils, and for improvement in estates and facilities.

The £499 million of funding includes:
• £414 million for the delivery of teaching to students;
• £67 million in student support such as bursaries and childcare funding;
• £17 million in improvement grants for strategic development, ICT, e-learning, and widening access.

Up to 100,000 new students are expected. The biggest rise in students is due to 14-16 year olds on vocational courses; half of the new money for teaching – around £13.8 million – is for this group.

Recent Scottish Further and Higher Education Funding Council research found that FE expansion has also been fuelled by a government drive to encourage lifelong learning and improve adult skills, and businesses looking for more highly-skilled employees.

More Schools of Ambition

The Scottish Executive has announced seven new schools will enter the Schools of Ambition programme. Please click here for the news release.

Acceptance and Usage of E-Assessment by Awarding Bodies

New research in the usage and acceptance of e-assessment by awarding bodies by a company called Thomson Prometric has recently been published.

Please click here for more details.