The three rivers consortium offers the following supporting information in the form of questions and answers.
1) What are the aims of the conference?
The aims of the North East Regional L&T Conference are to:
- develop the regional understanding of key issues in Learning & Teaching in Higher Education
- share effective learning and teaching practices
- draw new people into our Learning & Teaching support networks and providing a networking opportunity
Through the conference we encourage all staff involved in teaching and/ or supporting learning in their institutions to explore opportunities to develop their teaching practice and contribute to a range of discussions. This event also welcomes others involved in L&T related research projects in their institutions, such as postgraduate researchers and undergraduate students.
2) What areas of my work can I present at the conference?
You are invited to submit an abstract proposal for the Conference in any of the following themes:
- Transforming assessment
- Embedding employability
- Student access, retention, attainment and progression in higher education
- Internationalising higher education
- Flexible learning
- Student engagement through partnership
- Technology enhanced learning
- Education for Sustainable Development
You could include your approaches to teaching, learning and assessment; or policy formation, or quality assurance and enhancement; or leadership and management; or developing the students’ experience, or working with students as partners or producers.
3) What criteria will be used for assessing my abstract?
Your abstract will be assessed by the consortium based on the following criteria.
- The clarity and coherence of the proposal.
- The level of relevance of the proposed session to the conference title and theme.
- The level of interest they feel that the audience will have in the workshop.
Your abstract will be assessed by the consortium and ranked according to institution with the aim of encouraging equal representation from across all 5 institutions. You will find the submission form link on the Home Page. You may need to create an account in EasyChair if you don’t already have one.
4) What can I do to show the level of relevance of my work?
Use an appropriate title and contents to reflect the conference title and theme. Explicitly tell the review panel and conference delegates how your session will contribute to one of the themes. Describe the importance of your work in the context of the appropriate literature. You only have 250 words to get your points across, so use short paragraphs and support of your claims with references.
5) What can I do to have a clear and coherent proposal?
Write in a clear, concise, well-structured and signposted way that can be easily read by anyone.
Remember that you are writing for an educated audience who are from a range of subject disciplines. So, avoid discipline related jargon and abbreviations unless they are widely known across our academic community or a central feature of your proposal which you explain fully in your abstract.
Focus the proposal on the aims of your session, rather than offering an insight into background reading.
Provide information on how your session will be run, what it will contain, and what you will achieve.
If you are presenting your research into learning and teaching, you could include the stage you are at – the literature review stage, conducting a pilot study, developing a theoretical framework, or mention that the work is complete. You could offer a brief insight into WHY you did what you did, WHAT you did, your FINDINGS, WHAT this means to you and your learners, and any FUTURE work.
Structure your writing to include well supported claims and be explicit. When you include a claim or key argument, it will be important to offer supporting information from your own findings or the literature.
6) How can I help the panel decide the level of interest to the delegates?
To help the panel make a well informed judgement of the value of your session to the teaching community in the region, include a statement on what the audience will do and learn in your session.
Although you are presenting information based on your own experience, your session will undoubtedly benefit others in the audience. So, tell the reader explicitly how teaching or enhancement principles discussed in your session could be useful on other occasions in the same type of context, or how they could be transferred into other learning and teaching contexts. Explain why your session will be of benefit to the wider teaching community.
7) Do I need to show my contribution to scholarship and/or enhancement to the student learning experience?
If relevant to your presentation, include any theories and principles you are translating into your practice and any theories you are developing from your practice.
Tell the reader how your session will inform the regional understanding of any of the conference themes.
Offer ‘evidence’ on the benefits/impact of your work on the student learning experience. This is an opportunity for you to include the student voice in your session. The committee will welcome applications where students are presenting this aspect, so please tell the panel if your presentation team is composed of students and include what they will be doing during the session.
Include in text citations. And, if there is room, a short list of critical references to published work with your submission.
8) When I submit an abstract proposal, what information do I need to include?
Abstracts are submitted through EasyChair using the link on the Home Page. You may need to create an account first. Please include the following information:
- Contact Details – please indicate who is the ‘corresponding author’. This must be a member of staff from one of the participating institutions.
- Presenters/Authors (The first two presenters will be automatically registered; we encourage co-presentations with students)
- Your higher education institution/organisation.
- Title of your abstract proposal.
- Abstract Proposal – including acknowledgements and a reference list if there is space (up to 250 words not including references and acknowledgements ).
- Three keywords that characterise your submission.
- The conference theme to which your proposal corresponds – please select from the list of ‘topics’.
- (Optional) – Mapping your session to the UK Professional Standards Framework. Some staff attending the conference may wish to use particular sessions as evidence of developing the teaching practices of themselves or others. This opportunity could contribute to their (and your) wish to ‘remain in good standing’ and/or to inform a claim for recognition against a UKPSF Descriptor. To assist them in this endeavour, please state which of the UKPSF dimensions could map to your session, e.g. A1, K1 and V1*. You could list these in the ‘key words’ if you wish. Note: Please do not include all dimensions. Select 2-3 dimensions which you believe are represented most strongly in your proposed session. *See page 3 of the HEA pdf document for a list of dimensions which occur within the three topics – ‘Areas of Activity’, ‘Core Knowledge’, and ‘Professional Values’: https://www.heacademy.ac.uk/sites/default/files/downloads/UKPSF_2011_English.pdf
9) What guidance can you offer me on delivering a conference paper?
A conference paper is the presentation of research findings, generally followed by the opportunity for questions and answers, as well as some discussion. The aim is for delegates to have the benefit of your thoughts, experiences and findings in order to learn from you. When you deliver your paper, delegates will shape their understanding using your experiences, consider how this could work in their teaching context, and evaluate some of the possible risks and benefits of using your approach.
Places are limited at this conference, so no more than 2 presenters per presentation will be automatically registered.
Each session will be 25 minutes long (20 mins presentation and 5 mins questions) and a short timeframe will be offered between workshops for delegates to change rooms. We expect audience sizes of around 30 people which can generate a lot of discussion, Alternatively, you may wish to take a more workshop style approach to your presentation.
You will have access to a white board and white board pens. You are also welcome to attach information to the walls or to a white board using white tac. So, you have a number of ways you can display information.
You are welcome to print a handout, and structure the session around your handout. Please note that Microsoft Word, Adobe Acrobat Reader, and PowerPoint will be available if you wish to display your information using the computing facilities in the room. You are also welcome to use your own laptop with your own lead to connect it to the projector if you prefer.
There will be a Chair for your session. The role of the Chair is to help you in relation to Information Technology, and remind you what time is left at various points in your presentation. This can help you deliver your session at an optimum pace, but it will be better to have less content and more time for questions than risk over-running. If you are using a handout, you are welcome to ask the chair to help hand out material for you.
The tables and chairs will be movable in the majority of rooms, so your audience will have the opportunity to form discussion groups during your session if you wish. Since the time between each workshop will be small, you are advised to ask delegates to move the furniture as they see fit and return it to the original position before they leave.
The organisers would like to upload information you use in your session to a publically accessible webpage for the delegates to view and download at a future date – so please let the organisers know if you are happy to do this. Please make sure you have copyright clearance for any images or diagrams you include in your presentation. By taking part in the conference you are taking responsible for the information you disseminate at the conference. Please view our GDPR statement.
Please arrive at the conference with your final PowerPoint presentations on a USB Stick or other device for uploading onto the computers.
10) Do you accept posters?
You can bring a research poster and we advise a poster printed in A0 size. Alternatively, you may wish to create A4 handouts to hand out.
A poster is a concise overview which presents the findings of your research. A poster can include colours and images to make it visually attractive. It should include textual information which offers the reader a brief overview of the rationale and aims of your practice, as well as your approach and the methodology you used. More space is generally given to summarising the findings and the conclusions.
Use font sizes which can be seen at a distance. A useful main-title font size for an A0 poster is generally around 60-65pt, a section-title can be around 45pt, subtitles can be around 35pt. The main body of text can be around 24pt, and you could use 20-22pt for close up reading if you wish.
Please remember to include your name and email address, any acknowledgements, and a short list of references. You can offer the acknowledgements and references to readers at a very small font size (12pt) to give yourself more room for the other information.
Use easy to read fonts – e.g. san serif font such Arial or Verdana.
Use text colours that stand out from the background, ensuring that it is easily read at a distance.