Tuesday, 17 July 2018

TELFest 2018 - What we did differently

Between 25 - 28 June 2018 we ran our 5th Technology Enhanced Learning Festival, TELFest. Every year we do things differently or introduce some new ideas and here is a summary of some of those things as well as some highlights of the event.

TELFest was opened up to an external audience

Traditionally TELFest has been exclusive to staff at the University of Sheffield and a select number of invited individuals.  This year we opened up most of the festival to external institutions, with the exception of the Monday which was more 'hands-on' or University of Sheffield focused. We were delighted to have over 80 attendees from other institutions, attracting an international audience as far as Cairo and China.

Livestreaming

A parallel of sessions were livestreamed throughout the event using livestream, which we chose because it enabled chat functionality with no login restrictions. Each livestreamed session had an online moderator who facilitated discussion amongst our online audience and ensured that questions were asked to presenters. Throughout TELFest we had over 550 unique viewers from over 50 countries. It was great to see the positive feedback we were getting from people who were unable to attend.
Tweets about the TELFest Livestream
You can catchup on these sessions via the TELFest website and here is a direct link to the list of recordings: https://digitalmedia.sheffield.ac.uk/channel/TELFest+2018/95272991

Have I got TEL news for you

Keeping up with our game show keynote theme (in previous years we have had Faculty Fortunes, Room 101 and the CrysTEL maze), this years game show was based on Have I got News for You? The session took a competitive quiz-based look at some hot topics in technology-enhanced learning, hosted by Professor Wyn Morgan, VP for Education and featuring a panel of contestants from around the University.


As well as being highly entertaining, the sessions encouraged debate amongst both our teams and our audience, exploring topical issues in the TEL domain.



Best of the Festival

TELFest was jam packed with excellent and varied presentations and workshops throughout, with the festival closing with a keynote on Tightrope Walkers: Social Media, Equity, and Educational Practice by Dave Webster, Head of Learning & Teaching Innovation at The University of Gloucestershire (catchup here). A special mention must also go to our sessions voted 'best of the festival':
  • Tuesday Puzzling It Out, Helen Whitehead and Liz Cable, University of Nottingham / Leeds Trinity University
  • Wednesday Live-editing The Past, Charles West, University of Sheffield (Catch Up)
  • Thursday Using breaks to boost student creativity, Dermot Breslin, University of Sheffield (Catch Up)

Networking

To promote networking throughout the festival, each delegate pack included postcards and stickers and delegates were asked to add their self-identifying stickers of choice to their lanyards to spot like-minded delegates. Below are some of the post cards that had AR built into them.

   


Sponsorship

We were delighted to receive sponsorship for this year's TELFest with the support of our suppliers and sponsors: Turnitin, Kaltura, Blackboard, PebblePad and Echo 360. Their support and support from the University of Sheffield meant that we were able to keep the event free to an external audience. Thanks to Blackboard we also let us pilot Transact, their new product which enabled us to track attendance. Delegates were able to 'tap' in to a session using their new contactless technology. This very reliable technology enabled us to identify those that attended sessions helping us to elimiate our paper based system.

A big thank you to all of our organisers, presenters, delegates and sponsors, who after 5 years continue to make TELFest an ever increasingly valuable and vibrant event.

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