External Speakers at this year’s Learning and Teaching Conference: Part 1: Blackboard

We’re delighted to welcome a number of external speakers at this year’s Learning and Teaching Conference.

View our full programme and book your place online.

On Tuesday 4 July, we’ll be joined in person by colleagues from Blackboard.

Colleagues will have the opportunity to hear about future developments, work on and enhance their blackboard ultra modules, and provide feedback to the company on enhancements.

Please see below for our speakers’ biographies.

Read More

Keynote announcement: Annual Learning and Teaching Conference 

The Learning and Teaching Enhancement Unit is pleased to announce our keynotes for this year’s Annual Learning and Teaching Conference (4-6 July 2023).  

Booking for the conference is already open. Book your place today. 

We will be joined by colleagues from Blackboard and Bangor University to ensure that we are well prepared for our move to Ultra. 

There will be opportunities to: 

  • Learn all about the benefits of moving to Ultra 
  • Hear about some exciting new developments that will help enhance your teachingListen to colleagues from Bangor about the lessons that they’ve learned from their move 
  • Take a look at what excellent means with Ultra courses 
  • Attend a workshop to help enhance your modules to ensure that they are the very best that they can be for September 
  • Give your feedback on Ultra to product developers to help it meet our needs 

We’ll be announcing the rest of our programme shortly, but you can expect sessions on Artificial Intelligence, Creative Assessment Design, and developing resilience in students.  

We’re excited to see you in person on 4 and 5 July and online on 6 July.

Annual Learning and Teaching Conference: External Speaker Announcement

The Learning and Teaching Enhancement Unit is pleased to announce our first external speaker as part of this year’s Annual Learning and Teaching Conference.

Taking place between 4 and 6 July, bookings for the conference are already open.

Michael Webb from Jisc will discuss Artificial Intelligence in the session Navigating the Opportunities and Challenges of AI in Education.

Since the introduction of Chat GPT, colleagues have been finding ways in which the power of artificial intelligence might be used in Higher Education alongside the challenges that it poses.

Jisc’s national centre for artificial intelligence in tertiary education aims to help institutions adopt AI in a responsible and ethical way. We are working across the sector to help institutions navigate the challenges and opportunities presented by generative AI. In this session we’ll review the strengths and weakness of generative AI, the practices and approaches we see emerging, and take a look at how technologies and practices are developing as ever more generative AI applications are released.

Michael Webb is the director of technology and analytics at Jisc – the UK digital, data and technology agency focused on tertiary education, research, and innovation. He is co-lead of Jisc’s national centre for AI in tertiary education, supporting the responsible and effective adoption of artificial intelligence across the tertiary education sector. As well as artificial intelligence, he has worked on projects around the internet of things, virtual reality, and learning analytics. Before joining Jisc, Michael worked in the higher education sector, leading IT and learning technology.

This session will be of interest for colleagues who would like to add AI into their teaching and learning activities, as well as explore ways in which it can be used productively.

Our full programme will be announced on our webpages in due course. Aberystwyth University has been working on its own guidance for Artificial Intelligence. Take a look at ourConsiderations for Generative AI Detection blogpost for further information.

James Wood: Improving feedback literacy through sustainable feedback engagement practices

Banner for Audio Feedback

On Wednesday 10 May, the Learning and Teaching Enhancement Unit welcomed Dr James Wood from Bangor University to give some ideas around student feedback design and engagement.

The recording from the session is on Panopto and the PowerPoint slides can be downloaded below:

In the session, Dr Wood outlined

  • The changes to the feedback NSS questions for 2023
  • The purpose of feedback
  • The move away from feedback transmission to one of action
  • Barriers to student feedback engagement
  • Screencasting your feedback

The next big event for LTEU is our annual Learning and Teaching Conference which is taking place between 4 and 6 July. Bookings for this are already open.

If you have any external speakers that you would like LTEU to invite to next year’s series then please email lteu@aber.ac.uk with your suggestion.

Sustainability in the Curriculum: Materials Available

On 9 March, LTEU welcomed Dr Sarah Gretton and Alice Jackson from the University of Leicester to run a session entitled How to use UN 2030 Agenda Sustainability Development Goals to frame the Curriculum.

Slides and recordings from the session are now available.

In the session, Sarah and Alice gave an overview of how they embed SDGs across all curricula at Leicester, with 100% of their programmes having a module related to an SDG.

Participants at the session were given the opportunity to reflect on modules that they teach on and whether any of the UN SDGs map to them. Participants were also asked if students were aware of this mapping and whether it was captured in the learning outcomes of modules and programmes.

If you’re interested in Sustainability in the Curriculum then the UN’s Sustainable Development Goal targets are a good starting place.

In addition to SDGs, the presenters also linked to the following resources:

This external speaker event builds on our Mini Conference on Sustainability held in December.

Our next external speaker event is on 19 April, 14:00-15:30, where James Wood from Bangor University will be running a session on Improving Feedback Literacy. You can book this session via the Course Booking page.

External Speaker: Dr Sarah Gretton and Alice Jackson: Sustainability in the Curriculum and Education of Sustainable Development Goals for Aberystwyth University

LTEU is pleased to announce our next external speaker event. On 9 March 14:00-15:00, Dr Sarah Gretton and Alice Jackson from University of Leicester will be running an online workshop on Sustainability in the Curriculum.


Sustainable development can be adopted as a driver for change within higher education institutions and as an opportunity to transform curricula (as seen with the recent revisions to QAA Subject Benchmark Statements). This workshop will discuss practical ways to embed Education of Sustainable Development (ESD) and specifically the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) into the formal curricula. Dr. Sarah Gretton – Institutional lead for ESD and Alice Jackson – Sustainability Academic Engagement Officer at the University of Leicester – will bring their experiences in integrating the SDGs into teaching and learning and will guide participants on how to evaluate their modules in relation to the goals. During this session, participants will be asked to associate their module’s intended learning outcomes with the UN SDGs and associated targets, to understand how existing learning objectives can support sustainable development.


Sarah Gretton is an Associate Professor in Biological Sciences, Director of University of Leicester’s Natural Sciences programme, and Academic Lead for Education for Sustainable Development at the University of Leicester. Sarah is Senior Fellow of HEA.  Sarah has over a decade’s experience in educational development, working on internally and externally funded projects (HEA, Advance HE, Royal Society for Biology, QAA). Her research interests include sustainability, skills development and interdisciplinary science education and have resulted in multiple publications (https://scholar.google.co.uk/citations?user=xv8W6lIAAAAJ&hl=en). She leads the UK Society for Natural Science Scholarship of Teaching and Learning sub-committee and is member of national organising committee for the UK Horizons in STEM Higher Education Conference.  Her educational work has been recognised by a number of accolades which include reaching the finals of the 2017 Green Gown Awards (Sustainability Champion), winning the University of Leicester’s Teaching Excellence award (2017), and receiving a National Teaching Fellowship in 2021.

Alice is a sustainability professional working to deliver the ESD strategy at the University of Leicester. She comes from a sociology background and has previous experience working in employability and graduate skills which has informed her work in engagement and strengthening the sustainability content in the curriculum. She leads on the collection and analysis of data for an annual ESD audit and is enhancing those processes for the institution as part of a QAA funded ESD project. She has worked on the development and teaching of an interdisciplinary sustainable enterprise module to connect students with local SMEs in order to create lasting sustainable impact and has recently been recognised for this work at the 2022 Green Gown awards with a Highly Commended project. She has also developed and delivered Carbon Literacy Training to over 200 staff, students and local businesses as an accredited Carbon Literacy Facilitator.

This builds on our mini conference in December.

You can sign up for the event on our events booking page.

Resources from our previous external speaker series can be found on our blog.

If you’ve got any questions, please contact the Learning and Teaching Enhancement Unit (lteu@aber.ac.uk).

External Speaker: James Wood: Improving feedback literacy through sustainable feedback engagement practices 

The Learning and Teaching Enhancement Unit is pleased to announce their next external speaker. On 10 May from 14:00-15:30, James Wood from Bangor University will be hosting an online session on Improving feedback literacy through sustainable feedback engagement practices.

James Wood is Lecturer in Education, Assessment and Taught Postgraduate Lead at Bangor University. Prior to this position, James has worked with Kings College London, University College London, Birkbeck University, Greenwich University and Seoul National University.

Session Abstract

Despite the importance of feedback in supporting learning in higher education, there is still much to learn about nurturing sustainable skills for seeking, engaging with, and using feedback. In practice, many students fail to access feedback, and even if courses offer formative assessment in principle, it is only sometimes engaged with or used effectively. It is often argued that students require ‘feedback literacy’ before engagement with feedback is possible. However, in this workshop, we will explore how feedback literacy and receptivity to feedback can emerge as students experience well-designed dialogic feedback practices that offer the opportunity to consider how learning from feedback occurs, the benefits, what constitutes quality and how to evaluate it and how to develop and execute plans to close the gap between current and target performance. I will also discuss how social and non-human factors entangle with learners’ agency to engage in ways that can serve or limit their participation. I will finish with an overview of how technologies can be used to enhance learners’ ability to use feedback effectively and develop relationships and communities that can offer powerful collaborative learning opportunities, as well as emotional support and encouragement. 

The workshop will take place online using Microsoft Teams. Book your place online.

If you have any questions, please contact the Learning and Teaching Enhancement Unit (lteu@aber.ac.uk).

Contract Cheating: Red Flag Checklist Workshop– Materials Available

Turnitin icon

On 20 May, the Learning and Teaching Enhancement Unit were joined by Dr Mary Davies, Stephen Bunbury,  Anna Krajewska, and Dr Matthew Jones for their online workshop: Contract Cheating Detection for Markers (Red Flags).

With other colleagues, they form the London South East Academic Integrity Network Contract Cheating Working Group and have been doing essential work and research into the increased use of essay mills and contract cheating.

The session included lots of practical tips for colleagues to help detect the use of Contract Cheating whilst marking.

The resources from the session are available below:

Further information on Unfair Academic Practice is available in the Academic Quality Handbook (see section 10).

Many thanks to the presenters. We’ve had such great external speaker sessions this academic year; take a look at our External Speakers blogposts for further information.

LTEU External Speaker Event: Contract Cheating Detection for Markers

Banner for Audio Feedback

The Learning and Teaching Enhancement Unit is pleased to announce its next External Speaker Event.

On 20 May 2022 12:30-13:30, Dr Mary Davies, Principal Lecturer in the Business School at Oxford Brookes University, and colleagues will be running a workshop on their interactive red flag checklist resource Contract Cheating Detection for Markers.

Dr Davies will be joined by Stephen Bunbury, Senior Lecturer in Law at the University of Westminster, Anna Krajewska, Director of the Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning at Bloomsbury Institute, and Dr Matthew Jones, Senior Lecturer in Politics and International Relations at the University of Greenwich.

This workshop is designed to help staff participants detect potential contract cheating when marking. The presenters belong to the London and South East Academic Integrity Network Contract Cheating Working Group who put together an interactive ‘red flag’ checklist resource Contract Cheating Detection for Markers.

In the workshop, the presenters will explain the red flags that indicate possible contract cheating, through discussing sections of the checklist: text analysis, referencing and the use of sources, Turnitin similarity and text matching, document properties, the writing process, comparison with students’ previous work, and comparison to cohort. Participants will be provided with opportunities to practise using the checklist and to discuss effective ways to help them identify potential contract cheating in student work.

Resources from previous External Speaker events can be found on our blog.

The workshop will take place online using Microsoft Teams. Book your place online.

Please contact the Learning and Teaching Enhancement Unit if you have any questions (lteu@aber.ac.uk).

Rob Nash: External Speaker Materials Available

Why is receiving feedback so hard? Screen grab from Rob Nash's talk

On Friday 11 March, the Learning and Teaching Enhancement Unit hosted Dr Rob Nash, a Reader in Psychology from Aston University. Rob is an expert in feedback and ran a workshop looking explicitly at ways in which we can enhance and develop feedback engagement.

A recording of the transmission elements of the session is available on Panopto. You can also view the slides that he used.

For those of you who are interested in further exploring the terrain of feedback, you can take a look at the references that Rob used in his session:

Our next External Speaker event is Dr Mary Davies from Oxford Brookes who’ll be joined by other colleagues to discuss how we can detect potential contract cheating during the marking process. This workshop will be on 20 May 2022, 12:30-13:30. Booking for the session is already open.

A reminder as well that our Call for Proposals for our Annual Learning and Teaching Conference is currently open.