Digital Education Symposium a Wake-Up Call

City of Glasgow College’s annual Education Symposium this year focused on the impact of dynamic technological change on student learning and employability.

The event highlighted the wealth of opportunity within the sector while raising awareness of the challenges and prospects for educators and industry.

Deborah Kellsey Millar, founder of the LearningWheel, was one of the day’s key speakers. She said:

“The symposium was informative and stimulating and a wake-up call. As a digital practitioner I am aware of emerging technologies that will impact on education. However, after attending this event it is clear the technological landscape is evolving faster than I had realised. It is paramount that educational institutes are supported to develop staff and students’ digital literacy skills to enable them not only to survive in today's environment but thrive in the future.”

Steven Grier, Country Manager Microsoft Ltd (Scotland), added:  

“Well done to City of Glasgow College and its partners in bringing together such an impactful event. It was fantastic to see such focus from right across the spectrum of the Scottish business and academic landscape, on recognising and developing the potential of digital technologies. The symposium identified the prospect of digital being a huge positive differentiator for Scotland in the wider economic world.”

Caroline Stuart, NXD Consultant, reflected on the student experience and whether technology in educational institutions matches their expectations. She raised the question of curricula being fit for the new cloud world and wondered if educators talk to students in the channels they use, emphasising the importance of attracting and retaining students using technology that will revolutionise the student experience.

The afternoon question and answer session featured a lively discussion around digital literacy and changing the delivery models in schools, colleges, universities and work-based learning. It was chaired by Educational Consultant, Joe Wilson, who said:

“Scotland has not had the same push from government to digitise vocational learning, as is the case through the Further Education Learning Technology Action Group in England, so gatherings like this are critical for the sector.

“There were some quick wins from the symposium which include: learn how to harvest, harness, create and publish open educational resources; discover and use Learning Wheels; and think past where you are now, for computing perhaps the future should be in the cloud and virtual machines, or for learners a domain of their own.”

The symposium was accompanied by a hands-on digital exhibition. From games to robots and virtual reality to 3D printing, students and staff had the chance to see how digital technology is changing the student learning experience and transforming creative, media and STEM skills education in unexpected environments such as welding, jewellery making and working at heights.

For more details on this year’s Digital Education Symposium and to access the speakers’ presentations please follow this link.