Showing posts from September, 2012

update: Learning across contexts – mobile for fieldwork

An update of the use of the mobile technologies for field work is available at

Intended outcomes

 To enable students to quickly and easily document 
findings and ideas in the field 
 To enable the student to access resources electronically
and re-use data in other learning contexts


Trial use of mobile technology on two field trips, to Wicken Fen National Nature Reserve in December 2011 and to Stonehenge in February 2012. For both trips, the tutor set up a group blog in NILE, and asked the students to record their findings on site using mobile devices, and post them to the blog for 

The Wicken Fen field trip formed part of a second year module on Habitat Ecology and Management. Students were asked to observe and record details of the wetland habitat and share their observations with the group. They also planned to use GPS to tag the exact locations of …

iNorthampton v2 released into the wild

The update of iNorthampton, the University of Northampton's mobile App has been announced today: Updates are in-line with comments from students and staff.

Content below taken from:

General Improvements based on feedback “Need to be able to personalise the app more” We have included the ability to define your role when using the app from the first launch. This puts a framework in place to enable us to deliver more personalised information in the future.
You are now able to rearrange the tools on the springboard to move the ones you use most to the top – or just to a new page (currently only available on iOS).
Specific improvements to current tools: You want updates/improvements to Maps. “And maybe a campus walkthrough, using video or augmented reality” The main campus maps have been updated and will continue…

12000 views and counting

Yesterday the page views for this blog exceeded 12000.

Views from around the world.

Sample of some of the most popular papers
A diagrammatic language to build and share STEM te... 2 Sep 2012 81

mobile for fieldwork

Taken from  by Adel Gordon
This case study talks about a pilot run by Janet Jackson and her students in Environmental Sciences from the School of Science & Technology, whilst on two field trips to Wicken Fen and Stonehenge. The main aims of this pilot were to allow the students to document and reflect on their findings whilst in the context (in this case the field trips), and then to access and re-use that information outside of the context. Students enjoyed using the devices, particularly for photography and video, which helped them to record a lot of data very easily. 80% of the students said that the app was ‘easy’ or ‘very easy’ to use. More details can be found at Leaning across contexts – mobile for fieldwork (case study, PDF 581KB)

HEA computing update : September 2012

Taken from: The Higher Education Academy Computing Update by Dr. Mark Ratcliffe

News1. Workshops for 2012/13. If you are interested in hosting a workshop, please send an email to

2. STEM Annual Learning and Teaching Conference 2013: where practice and pedagogy meet.Following the success of this year’s conference, our next conference will be held at the University of Birmingham on 17 – 18 April 2013. The call for full papers, posters and workshops is now open.

The conference will explore the relationship between pedagogy and practice across the full range of HEA STEM disciplines, and this year in particular will focus upon:
• Improving the employability skills of STEM graduates;
• Innovative approaches to teaching and assessing large classes;
• Giving effective feedback to students;
• Growing diversity in the student population;
• Practices in peer mentoring;
• Impact of information technology in learning and teaching;
• Students as partners.

Important dates/deadli…

How to Make Your new NILE Sites Available

Taken from: All of the new 2012 – 2013 NILE sites are currently set as unavailable to students by default, so when you have finished building your new NILE sites, you will need to  make them available to your students. Students will be automatically added to sites where possible but will not see any content until it has been made available. Once your content is in place  you can go ahead and make the sites available so that when students are added to them, they can access the content immediately. In order to make your NILE site available to students please follow these 5 steps: Enter your unavailable NILE site.Under the Control Panel (on the lower left of the window) select Customisation, and choose Properties.Under Set Availability, select ‘Yes‘ to Make Module AvailableClick Submit The new upgrade to NILE also speeds up the process of making a NILE sites available if you have a number you ne…


Recent paper published by Dan Bailey and Dr Jonathan Adams at The International Conference on Engineering Education 2012 Turku Finland July 30 – August 3, 2012

Proceedings can be found at:

Daniel C. M. Bailey,
Jonathan P. Adams,
Twenty-three years ago the University of Northampton along with a number or local engineering companies including British Timkin, Cosworth, Cummins, Express Lifts and KAB Seating formed a partnership to provide industry experience for undergraduate students. The founding aim of the NETP was: “to create a pool of ‘industry ready’ Engineers to support the Northamptonshire area”.
The NETP set up a paid placement scheme where students would spend a year split between three companies, attending University one day per week to continue with their academic studies. It is estimated that the NETP has offered over 500 placement opportunities since its inception.
In re…


Recent paper published by Professor Phil Picton at The International Conference on Engineering Education 2012 Turku Finland July 30 – August 3, 2012

Proceedings can be found at:

The University of Northampton,

Whenever an ultrasonic wave encounters a boundary between two media it is partially reflected and refracted, as any acoustic wave would be. Unlike light, the wave also undergoes mode conversion so that in the general case a single incident wave could produce two reflected waves and two refracted waves. The angles which define the path of the wave are determined by Snell’s law and are easily calculated. The relative amplitudes, on the other hand, require quite complicated formula when the angle of incidence is anything other than 0 degrees. This problem gets compounded when the angle of the incident wave goes beyond the first critical angle. At this point the angle of the refracted wave becomes imaginary and th…

A diagrammatic language to build and share STEM teaching narratives

Dr Tina Wilson, Visiting Fellow with STRiPe (Science and Technology Research in Pedagogy) has recently had a paper published at the STEM Annual Conference 2012 at Imperial College and The Royal Geographical Society London


The general objective of this overall work is to propose a methodology for the creation of language-neutral multimedia materials (without audio or text), which can be directly embedded in STEM courses in any language. The overall design of this project was discussed in [1]

The design was based on four stages: 1) a very explicit design of the course, mainly on the dependence of the concepts, using Compendium, 2) the careful selection of icons for some key concepts, 3) the generation of short interrelated animations, which try to identify a suitable graphic language (with both formal syntax and semantics), 4) the proposal of metadata, some internal to each animation and other external, to interrelate them. The final export of this educational package would consis…