RSC East Midlands newsletter "intouch" - Spring 2004

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The JISC Regional Support Centre (RSC) for the East Midlands produces a termly newsletter "intouch" that highlights current practice in e-learning/ILT in the region.

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<ul><li><p>Spring 2004 Volume 2 Issue 2</p><p>the termly newsletter produced by RSC East Midlands</p><p>Welcomefrom the Editor</p><p>In the last newsletter I mentioned that the remit of the RSC had expanded to</p><p>include support for specialist colleges and some aspects of higher education. Since</p><p>then, our remit has been extended further and we are now also supporting the</p><p>Adult and Community Learning Sector (see the article beneath for further details). </p><p>To help us maintain effective support for all sectors for which we are now responsible, we will shortly</p><p>be joined by two new members of staff. In addition Chris Bell, our e-Information Officer will be taking</p><p>on the role of Specialist College Advisor.</p><p>There are interesting and increasingly busy times ahead for us here at the RSC, as we venture into sectors</p><p>new, but I would like to assure all our customers, old and new, of our continued commitment and support.</p><p>Judi Millage, ILT Advisor</p><p>Derby College sprang into existence in 2002following the merger of three local colleges.Although sprang might be an inappropriateepithet for such a traumatic upheaval. We arefortunate to have an enlightened seniormanagement team that felt that it was importantat this time to create a dedicated team addressingILT issues. In our case this involves every activityrelating to ILT, ranging across staff development,curriculum support, VLE administration andmaterials development as well as collegeadministrative systems development. We have ateam of 5 staff and are supported by a dedicatedband of 15 ILT champions seconded for a fewhours a week from their normal duties.</p><p>Working in ILT its easy to assume that everyoneelse is of the faith, that everyone understands theadded value that the appropriate use of technologyoffers us. It is sometimes a surprise that not all staffare of that view and need to be sold on the idea;that we have to take a step back and articulate theILT vision and demonstrate how ILT can enhancethe learning experience. Thats where we believethe FPP can help. It offers us a comprehensive toolthat we can adapt to whatever training situationwe find ourselves in. Through the JEB TILT awardit also offers us the opportunity to offer attractiveaccreditation at Level 4. </p><p>We were too late to be involved in the FPP pilotscheme but were keen to start work with thematerials as soon as they were available and ourChampions spent a day a week through thesummer term working through all the modules.We began in earnest by running I LoveTechnology week; a two day staff developmentcourse repeated within our administration week</p><p>in July for 120 staff. This involved the first fourmodules of the FPP interspersed with a range ofhands-on sessions, including deliverytechnologies, materials, and applications. OurILT champions led small groups of staff throughthe FPP modules and all the activities werecompleted online following a group discussion(often animated!). </p><p>Since then we have become licensed by the JEBto run TILT and our champions are taking 30 staffthrough the qualification as a pilot. This activityis operating as distance learning through our VLEwith tutorial support.</p><p>FPP activities are also incorporated into the ILTmodule of our Foundation Degree in SupportingLearners, which is classroom-based. We havefound, not unexpectedly, that our teaching staff,like the majority of learners, are social animals,motivated by working with others. Isolateddistance learning activities, even with learnerswho are committed and have good intentions canbe de-motivating for the learner and also for thetutors attempting to manage them. </p><p>To address this need we will be offering FPP/TILTgroup workshops led by the ILT team using all thetechnologies and ILT methods at our disposal.Not only to preach but also to practice good ILT.We aim to inspire and motivate by example.College certificates will be offered for thesuccessful completion of each FPP module whichwill be accepted as a unit of essential criterianow required of all staff in order to gain the nextsalary increment with their post scale.</p><p>Lynne Brandt, e-Environment Manager, Derby College.</p><p>Derby College</p><p>C O L L E G EFOCUS</p><p>RSCs Support Adult andCommunity Learning</p><p>Black Arrow is a Java Executable tool that allows NLNMaterials to run with navigation on a PC with noSCORM compliant Virtual Learning Environment (VLE)installed. Once opened by Black Arrow, the materialsare supplemented by a navigation pane which runsdown the left hand side of the browser. Usually this willconsist of forward and back buttons and a breakdownof the different elements contained within the materials.The tool allows for limited customisation of the lookand feel of the materials, including changing coloursand different style Forward and Back buttons.</p><p>To allow Black Arrow to run, the Java Executable fileJava2 Runtime Environment Standard Edition (J2re)version 1.2 or later has to be installed on the computerthat is to generate the navigation page. Black Arrowcan be downloaded from:http://www.nln.ac.uk/materials/technical/black_arrow_docs.asp</p><p>Once downloaded, Black Arrow can be opened bydouble clicking on NLN_Navigation_tool_v1.jar. Thenselect the manifest.xml file from the unzipped</p><p>material. Once the output file name has been selected,clicking on the Generate Output Files button willprocess the files and create the navigation.</p><p>When the output files have been generated you will befaced with a directory structure appropriate to theparticular set of materials that you downloaded. Withinthis structure will be a new index page generated byBlack Arrow, this is identified by a _ba suffix on thefile name; double clicking on this will launch thenavigation frame page together with the content.</p><p>You can find out more about the NLN Black Arrow toolby visitingwww.nln.ac.uk/materials/technical/black_arrow_docs.asp.Alternatively RSC East Midlands has its own NLNMaterials page which can be accessed by visitingwww.rsc-east midlands.ac.uk/teach_and_learn/teach_and_learn_resources.asp.Here you can find a useful list of problems andsolutions users have faced when using the tool.</p><p>Chris Bell, e- Information Officer</p><p>What we are doing with the FPP</p><p>U s i n g t h e N L N w i t h B l a c k A r r o wH i n t s &amp; T i p s</p><p>Forthcoming</p><p>EVENTSApril20th Technical Forum</p><p>21st Using ILT in English</p><p>22nd ASET OrientationWorkshop: Accreditationand funding for the FerlPractitioners Programme</p><p>29th Using ILT in Catering&amp; Hospitality</p><p>May6th Using ILT in Teacher</p><p>Training</p><p>11th FPP Forum(provisional date)</p><p>13th Finding Images forTeaching &amp; Learning</p><p>18th Using ILT in Basic Skills</p><p>20th MIS Forum</p><p>26th Using ILT in Business</p><p>June9th ILT Forum (provisional date)</p><p>10th Using ILT in Key Skills</p><p>15th LRC Forum (provisional date)</p><p>17th Web Forum (provisional)</p><p>22nd NLN Workshop: Re-craftingthe Content</p><p>23rd Creating an MLE</p><p>24th Technical Forum(provisional date)</p><p>For further details see our websitewww.rsc-east-midlands.ac.uk</p><p>I N S I D ET h i s i s s u eWelcome </p><p>RSCs support Adult andCommunity Learning</p><p>RSC Mailing Lists</p><p>Meet our new ILT Advisor</p><p>Focus on Security Software: Secure your Network</p><p>Paving the Way to Excellence ine-learning: e-learning standards guide launched</p><p>Forthcoming Events</p><p>College Focus: Derby College</p><p>Hints &amp; Tips: Using the NLN Materialswith Black Arrow</p><p>Regional Support Centres already support FE colleges, Sixth Form colleges, Specialist colleges, and aspects of HE (HE</p><p>colleges and HE students in FE colleges). From February 1st 2004, the list for English RSCs gets even longer. We are very</p><p>pleased to welcome new colleagues from Adult and Community Learning (ACL). For us this means a great deal of work -</p><p>but we are looking forward to it.</p><p>All the services we offer the existing community</p><p>will be extended to include ACL, such as events,</p><p>visits, e-mail lists, forums and the helpdesk.</p><p>However, in some ways working with ACL will</p><p>be a little different. ACL is a very diverse sector,</p><p>with a big majority of part time staff and</p><p>thousands of delivery locations. Our work with</p><p>ACL will focus on the managing agents. In the</p><p>East Midlands these are the local authorities (of</p><p>which we have 9) who have overall responsibility</p><p>for ACL in their area. Some of these local</p><p>authorities deliver the service directly themselves,</p><p>others sub-contract, others do a mix of both. The</p><p>early priorities are to support them all in</p><p>developing an ILT strategy, which has to be</p><p>submitted early in 2005, and connecting them to</p><p>the internet through JANET. This differs from other</p><p>sectors where there is more emphasis on working</p><p>with practitioners. </p><p>In the RSC we know already that we have a lot to</p><p>learn. To concentrate on the ACL work, we are</p><p>appointing a new team member with an</p><p>understanding of the ACL area and the</p><p>development and implementation of strategy. We</p><p>will of course continue to work as a team, sharing</p><p>the workload and our individual expertise. When</p><p>our new Advisor for ACL is appointed an early</p><p>priority will be to visit all the ACL providers in the</p><p>East Midlands to start the dialogue going. Before</p><p>then, well do the best we can!</p><p>The whole initiative has a really effective</p><p>support website at www.aclearn.net. It is being</p><p>led nationally by the National Institute of Adult</p><p>Community Education (NIACE) which is based</p><p>in Leicester; their website is www.niace.org.uk</p><p>Talking to people at our events, it is clear that</p><p>the different sectors already supported by the</p><p>RSC have much to learn from each other and</p><p>benefit from being members of the same</p><p>network. Your problems may already have been</p><p>solved in another sector. ACL takes for granted</p><p>difficult issues such as how you train part time</p><p>staff who only work a few hours each week and</p><p>how you provide a service which is very widely</p><p>scattered. We look forward to discovering some</p><p>answers as we start to work together.</p><p>Chris Hill, RSC Manager</p><p>w w w. r s c - e a s t - m i d l a n d s . a c . u k w w w. r s c - e a s t - m i d l a n d s . a c . u k</p><p>intouch</p></li><li><p>RSC Mailing ListsIn an increasingly hostile network environment, maintainingsecurity is vital. Before buying a security product, its alwaysworth looking to see what Chest Agreements are available.Chest negotiates with suppliers on behalf of FE and willtherefore have the best deal available for those products. </p><p>Chest currently has Agreements for the following security products: </p><p> Sophos</p><p>A multi-platform anti-virus software for email gateways, file servers,</p><p>networked PCs, standalone PCs and laptops. 30 day trial downloads</p><p>are available from http://www.sophos.com. A new lower pricing band</p><p>is now offered. Prices start at 900 for a one year Sophos anti-virus</p><p>server and workstation licence, plus one free month, for up to 500 PCs.</p><p>Sophos Enterprise Manager, which automates virus updating from the</p><p>internet, is also available on the same basis from 300. More info on</p><p>http://www.chest.ac.uk/software/sophos/. </p><p> Check Point FireWall-1</p><p>A fully integrated security suite, including all necessary functionality</p><p>for comprehensive, enterprise-wide security. Features include access</p><p>control, authentication, virtual private networking, third party device</p><p>management, network address translation, content security, ldap user</p><p>directory support, auditing and enterprise-wide management.</p><p>30 day trial downloads are available from</p><p>http://www.checkpoint.com/getsecure.html. The Chest Agreement</p><p>represents a reduction of approximately 50% on list price. More</p><p>information on http://www.chest.ac.uk/software/firewall-1/</p><p> VCS Firewall </p><p>A secure, flexible firewall, designed to meet the most stringent</p><p>requirements for protecting networks from unauthorised intrusion.</p><p>When installed as part of a general network security programme, the</p><p>VCS Firewall will control, manage and audit all communication</p><p>between two networks. A 30 day evaluation period is available.</p><p>Special FE price - 1200 1st year, 900 subsequent years. More</p><p>information on http://www.chest.ac.uk/software/vcs. </p><p> Veritas Software Corporation</p><p>A popular Chest Agreement. Provides a comprehensive range of</p><p>backup, storage, management and data protection products. Prices</p><p>vary. Trials are available from resellers. More information on</p><p>http://www.chest.ac.uk/software/veritas/</p><p>Focus on Security Software:Secu r e Your Ne twor k</p><p>intouch</p><p>Paving the Way to Excellence in e-learninge - l e a r n i n g s t a n d a r d s g u i d e l a u n c h e d</p><p>Page 3w w w. r s c - e a s t - m i d l a n d s . a c . u k</p><p>intouch</p><p>The RSC operates a number of email lists for the purposes of allowing college</p><p>staff to share ideas and best practice with their colleagues across the region. As</p><p>the use of these lists has grown, it has become necessary to add a method of</p><p>archiving list messages. This will allow users to search past messages for answers</p><p>to their queries and so help prevent the same questions being asked repeatedly.</p><p>To achieve this, the RSC has moved its email lists onto JISCmail, as</p><p>this gives the required message archiving facilities.</p><p>The following RSC email lists are now available through JISCmail :</p><p> business-rscem Business Development </p><p> ilt-rscem ILT Managers / ILT Champions</p><p> lrc-rscem Librarians / Learning Resources</p><p> mis-rscem MIS / CIS</p><p> principals-rscem Principals / Deputy Principals</p><p> sd-rscem Staff Development</p><p> technical-rscem Technical</p><p> webdev-rscem Web Resources / Development</p><p> qm-rscem Quality Management</p><p> speccoll-rscem Specialist Colleges</p><p>All members of the previous RSC email lists have automatically been</p><p>moved across to the new JISCmail lists, so no re-joining of lists</p><p>should be necessary.</p><p>To access the JISCmail system, go to the following URL</p><p>www.jiscmail.ac.uk</p><p>By entering the list name you require and following the login</p><p>process, you will be able to view the archived messages for that</p><p>particular list.</p><p>To post to a particular list, compose the message as normal, and then</p><p>send the message to list-name@jiscmail.ac.uk, where list-name is</p><p>replaced by the name of the list to which the message is to be sent.</p><p>For example to send a message to the RSCs mailing list for technical</p><p>staff, the message should be sent to technical-rscem@jiscmail.ac.uk</p><p>Meet our new ILT Advisor Martin CookeBefore taking up this post I was working</p><p>from home as a LeTTOL Online tutor.</p><p>One of the things this has taught me is</p><p>the value of working in a team:</p><p>I make progress by having people around</p><p>me who are smarter than I am - and</p><p>listening to them. And I assume that</p><p>everyone is smarter about something than </p><p>I am. - Henry J Kaiser</p><p>I was gratified to</p><p>be able to answer</p><p>promptly, and I did.</p><p>I said I didnt know. -</p><p>Mark Twain</p><p>LeTTOL, a course that helps participants</p><p>gain the skills needed to develop and deliver</p><p>on-line courses, is web-based and works</p><p>well without the use of a learning platform.</p><p>Cheap and cheerful still has its uses.</p><p>My first degree was in Politics and History -</p><p>there was a significant element of Marxism</p><p>included at the time (70s). How times change!</p><p>I taught Art and History in middle school,</p><p>though trained for Primary. Previously I</p><p>worked in libraries, both public and school,</p><p>and taught information skills. </p><p>My wife Diana and I have four children; the</p><p>eldest is c...</p></li></ul>