Faculty of education Showcase

The ESTeM Teaching and Learning Innovation Showcase was held  in the Inspire Centre on 13 May. More than 60 UC staff attended to hear about the work that has been undertaken over the last 18 months. Presentations on Mastery Learning and M-Teach were given in the Flexispace area and then in the TEAL room ESTeM staff manned their augmented reality posters and delved deep in response to questions from their colleagues.

  • Mastery Learning – Grahame Ginn, Margi BohmFlipped Approaches – Leah Moore
  • M-Teach – Rob Fitzgerald, Simon Leonard, Eva Taylor-Jarvoll
  • Partnership Pedagogies – Mike Gaffney and Misty Kirby, Mikaela Jade & Ruth Mirams (Paramodic) with Gavin Blake (Feverpicture)
  • Distributed Networks – Matt Bacon, Rob Fitzgerald, Simon Leonard, Lee Yu, David Butt, John Wells & Allison Hornery (Cofluence)


Adam Winkle

Today I met with Adam Winkle who is best known for his foundational activities in the education and training domain with a informed criticality of the use of body worn location enabled technologies such as Google Glass (pictured) in an educational context.

What strikes me about Adam is his ability to see the bigger picture, his collaboration abilities and his love for education as a professional.

Adam lives in sunny Florida, USA and states:

"...I am a Science teacher in the Collier County Public School district and absolutely love my job."

He also adds:

 "...Discovery Education STEM educator."

Given these three factors above and the fact that he also hosts STEMVids and is the founding host for "Hangout of the Minds" soon to be listed at http://eduglasses.com we thought it fitting to connect the dots and invite Adam to join the INSPIRE Centre, University of Canberra as part of our #glassmeetups program and broader research activities.

Adam, his colleagues and business partners will join us in semi-regular hangouts where we co-join our research foci and explore the synergy lines on this technological innovation and resonance across curriculum.

Mik & Ruth - Story Gathers

Mik and Ruth

Mikaela Griffiths and Ruth Mirams from Paramodic recently presented an inspirational TEDX Canberra 2013 talk entitled “Story Gathers”. Here is a little more information from the TEDX website: "Both scientists by training, Mikaela and Ruth also have experience in fields as diverse as national park management, hospitality and education – in fact they are both on their fourth career already.

They are unashamedly idealistic, and in all work they do they are trying their best to make the world a better place for humanity. The best part of their job is the amazing people they get to work with every day – from service designers to complexity scientists to educators to actors to indigenous elders."

WEX Teachers Program


The Learn Earn Legend! Work Exposure with Government (WEX) Program provides Indigenous students in Years 11 and 12 an opportunity to gain hands-on experience in the Australian Government and explore the job opportunities and career pathways available to them in the public sector.  The Learn Earn Legend! message encourages and supports young Indigenous Australians to stay at school, get that job and be a legend for themselves, their family and their community. INSPIRE recently hosted 17 WEX teachers from Indigenous schools across Australia. Rob Fitzgerald provided a two hour workshop exploring: Tour of the Inspire detailing the design principles underpinning this new learning space; Introduction to Augmented Reality and an iPad hands-on session.


INSPIRE is learning commons, a place to imagine, experiment and design new ways of working and learning digitally. We focus on a futures perspective and developing foresight, not just knowledge and skills.Funding for the building was provided by the Australian Government with additional support from the University of Canberra and the ACT Government. Take a virtual tour

New $26 million Institute

Prime Minister Julia Gillard and ACT Chief Minister Katy Gallagher have announced that the University will house a new Centre for Quality Teaching and Learning, which will deliver professional skills and applied, practice-led research to support the introduction of the Government’s National Plan for School Improvement reforms. The University's Vice-Chancellor Stephen Parker welcomed the news.

“The University of Canberra is the ideal place to locate this new centre, which will give teachers the tools they need to deliver the next phase of school improvement in Australia,” Professor Parker said.

“We have a strong track record in training excellent teachers and in delivering the kind of applied research that delivers real improvements in the classroom. Plus we have strong and productive partnerships in education in Australia and Asia.

“In recent years we have forged strong links with two local schools, supporting them in strengthening teaching, broadening access to resources and raising aspirations among students who might not otherwise have considered university study.

“Our research and teaching in education is supported by the new INSPIRE Centre, which was established with Commonwealth and ACT Government support and which is at the cutting edge of technology in education – supporting today’s teachers and shaping tomorrow’s classrooms.”

The new centre will collaborate with universities, researchers and teachers to support professional development for ACT teachers to grow and develop, find new ways for teachers to be more effective and assist in the implementation of systems for continuous teacher performance feedback.

“School students and school teachers will benefit enormously from this, but there will be wider benefits to the ACT economy by further developing Canberra as a destination for education and research, creating jobs and ensuring our school and university graduates have the latest skills they need to thrive in a competitive knowledge economy,” Professor Parker added.

The University recently combined its teaching and research in science and mathematics into its education faculty, creating the Faculty of Education, Science, Technology and Mathematics, which will help boost science and maths teaching in schools.

ARCamp 2.0

The Augmented Reality Camp will take place on 20-21st May 2013 at the INSPIRE Centre Canberra. ARcamp is an active workshop series for academics, teachers and students interersted in augmented reality and keen to design new opportunities for the future of education. It involves hands on workshops to develop knowledge and skills and provides networking opportunities to develop your ideas, share experience and find new ways to build learning experiences using AR.

Each workshop includes a practical aspect of AR and the opportunity to develop ideas for use in your own personal context. The ARcamp provides the chance to focus on AR and introduces new ways of developing ideas through service design and thinking about delivery, engagement and co-design.

Campers can expect to:

  • gain a general awareness of the AR environments
  • develop practical skills in building AR
  • design learning opportunities for your own use
  • have access to technology and equipment
  • work collaboratively to develop ideas for AR in education
  • share ideas and learn from each other
  • build a relationship with the ARstudio to further develop ideas

ARcamp is targeted at academics, teachers and students throughout schools, colleges, TAFE’s and HE interested in helping make education more engaging and active. The ARstudio is funded by the Office for Learning and Teaching (OLT) and is located at the University of Canberra, INSPIRE centre.

For more information please check out the ARstudio website, contact danny.munnerley@canberra.edu.au or call 0421 729 388.

Transforming Higher Ed.

Monday October 22 saw the thoughts and opinions of educators from around Australia collide in a lively symposium hosted by the Office for Learning and Teaching with a focus on digital transformation in higher learning and the increasing demand for the development of free online courses. Many have predicted a great change ahead in higher education, but the question is what impact will this have on the way in which universities operate and how will they respond? Leading up to the Monday afternoon event across a two week period, The Conversation put forward their ideas on the how the university sector can respond. From 15 authors, five were selected to present their ideas on the future of higher education in a conversation with Tertiary Education Minister, Senator Chris Evans.

The panel consisted of:

  • Professor Jane den Hollander, Vice-Chancellor and President, Deakin University
  • Professor David Sadler, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Students and Education), University of Tasmania
  • Professor David Lamond, Pro Vice-Chancellor (Offshore Branch Campus Development), Victoria University
  • Professor Shirley Alexander, Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Vice-President (Teaching, Learning ,Equity), University of Technology, Sydney
  • Mr Paul Wappett, CEO, Open Universities Australia
  • Ms Donherra Walmsley, President, National Union of Students, responding on behalf of students.

Damien Maher and his team from Newcast filmed the 3-hour symposium streaming it live to an online audience using The Conversation's website. Having never before live streamed an event, the Office for Learning and Teaching broke the Newcast record for the most amount of simultaneous viewers of a live stream, with over 41,000 total viewer minutes, more than 4,000 streams served in Australia and just under 300 total streams served.

Sydney based graphic Facilitator, Gavin Blake from Fever Picture was also present for the Future of Higher Education symposium where he captured the highlights of the panel's ideas in graphic form using the IdeaPaint walls in the Teal Room.

To conclude the afternoon, Bella Counihan from The Conversation interviewed members from the audience for their final thoughts on the issues raised during the symposium. You can view the video of listen to the podcast at  The Conversation.

Twitter: #FutureHigherEd


Read and comment on the shortlist of 15 articles: www.theconversation.edu.au

Our INSPIRE Associates...

INSPIRE is setting new standards for the design of teaching and learning services through its implementation of a 12-month INSPIRE Associates Program which commenced in July earlier this year. Six INSPIRE Associates were selected from a pool of talented educators within local ACT schools and through working at INSPIRE with the ACT Education & Training Directorate, will be accredited to deliver high quality professional development grounded in current practice and practical ideas of how this can be utilised for learning.

On any given Thursday (with the exception of school holidays of course), the INSPIRE Associates take residency here at INSPIRE and engage in intensive workshops with the ACT ETD INSPIRE Manager, Laurie Campbell and INSPIRE staff to further develop their skills and knowledge of the new digital learning era.

The Six INSPIRE Associates are:

Tiffany Mahon - Melrose High School

Dan Bray - Hawker College

Ian Thompson - Kingsford Smith School

Peter Smythe - Gungahlin College

Sophie Bissell - Macquarie Primary School

Trish Ghirardello - Mawson Primary School

You can read more about the INSPIRE Associates here.

Cronulla Street Summer 1973-2011

Monday September 24 saw the successful opening of Cronulla Street Summer 1973-2011, an exploratory installation of photographs taken in 1973 and rephotographed again in 2011, around Cronulla Street, (Cronulla, NSW) in the Teal Room at INSPIRE. 

INSPIRE Adjunct Professional Associate James Steele began his PhD program in Visual Arts with the theme User-generated images in space, time and place exploring how photographs turn a location into a place, worthy of society's recognition as significant in Australian culture.

The five-day exhibition is a culmination of his work completed over the period of the program that shows the contrast between then and now: how the place has changed.

In 1972, James enrolled in an Architecture undergraduate degree program as a student at the University of New South Wales where he learned how to make films, consequently his film was the only one to be produced that year. Early 1973, saw James leave the University of NSW to pursue his passion - film producing, however before he was given an assignment to develop a proposal to turn the Cronulla Street suburban shopping strip into a pedestrian mall. James never completed the assignment.

Almost forty years later, it was in a box of old keepsakes that James found the six strips of black and white TRI-X negatives: six per strip making 36 images in all, and so he revisisted Cronulla Street once more.

"For two days, I scanned and consulted Google Maps, and eventually felt I had located most of the images with reasonable certainty," says James.

Using the street names identified in image 32, James used Google Maps to search for the street view of the corner of the two streets and was able to locate the same place today. With his GPS unit in hand, James set off for the location of where he thought 00 had been taken and there it was in the same location - but as Cronulla Mall.

Read more about Cronulla Street Summer...




INSPIRE Opening Video

This video was created by Senior Lecturer Danny Munnerley at the University of Canberra for the INSPIRE Opening Launch on May 30, 2012.

The video tells the story so far about INSPIRE and the various collaborative events that have been hosted here.

Photos and imagery used in the film can be attributed to:

- Danny Munnerley

- James Steele

- Jessica Schumann

- Ben Wrigley

- Cox Architecture

Watch the chemistry grow...

From salt to sugar, sand to stone - even LCD and computer screens, crystals are everywhere around us and a constant fixture in our daily lives. So to coincide with National Science Week the University of Canberra is conducting its 2012 Crystal Growing Competition for Primary and Junior Secondary Schools students.

With over 2000 student entries already across 4 divisions, students are required to grow their crystals over 8 weeks in Term 2 and 3. The crystals will then be judged on size, shape and clarity at the Crystal Competition Award Ceremony to be held at INSPIRE on the afternoon of August 15.

The winner from each division will receive a certificate and the winning school will receive a framed certificate to display proudly at their school.

The winning crystals will also be displayed at Questacon in the week beginning 20th August 2012.

National Science Week is an annual celebration of science in Australia, an opportunity to join together to enjoy and explore the wonders and benefits of science.

The competition is sponsored by the Royal Australian Chemical Institute.

Using Learning Design for Innovative eTeaching

The new field of Learning Design provides ways to describe innovative teaching strategies, and methods for their online implementation. Last Monday Professor James Dalziel, Director, Macquarie E-Learning Centre Of Excellence (MELCOE), Macquarie University ran a workshop at INSPIRE on this topic. James was in Canberra as part of his Australian Learning and Teaching Council National Teaching Fellowship. The first half of this workshop covered Learning Design concepts and implementation, examples from the "LAMS" Learning Design system, and a discussion of recent development and future prospects for the field. The second half of the workshop was opened up for discussion, questions and exploration of examples, including consideration of the connections between Learning Design and Curriculum Design. Keith Lyons has blogged about the workshop here and the James's powerpoint slides are here.

New research project

A University of Canberra led project to guide the application of technology interaction in informal learning environments, such as galleries or museums, has won a prestigious research grant, announced today by Science and Research Minister Senator Chris Evans. The project Information systems theory for location based educational services in informal learning environments (LP120200818) is led by Professor in Service Management Byron Keating and has been awarded a $225,000 linkage project grant from the Australian Research Council (ARC) to better understand how location-based technologies can enhance learning in cultural institutions. Location-based technologies use knowledge about where a user –someone with a mobile device such as a smartphone or an iPad—is located in order to provide a more interactive experience. Three of Australia’s leading cultural institutions: National Portrait Gallery, National Museum of Australia and Questacon – The National Science and Technology Centre will partner in the project. The project is a cross-disciplinary approach to research drawing on the collaborators’ expertise in service management, education and technology. Professor Keating’s colleagues in this project include University of Canberra Professor of Education Robert Fitzgerald and Professor in Information Sciences and Engineering John Campbell and the Australian National University’s Professor Shirley Gregor.

Creating technology enhanced learning experiences will be critical to the way we educate and engage with future generations. This project will seek to develop a stronger theoretical basis for understanding how location-based technologies can enhance learning outcomes of school students visiting three of Australia's leading cultural institutions.

Official Opening Video

On Wednesday 30 May the INSPIRE centre was opened by ACT Deputy Chief Minister Andrew Barr. The $7 million centre is designed to lead research and practice in the use of technology in teaching and learning. Mr Barr was joined by University of Canberra Vice-Chancellor Professor Stephen Parker and Director-General ACT Education and Training Directorate Diane Joseph, to officially launch the new facility. The state-of-the-art centre will deliver professional education and applied research in information and communications technology (ICT), and is a partnership between the ACT Government and the University of Canberra. Professor Parker said the centre would help the University develop as a recognised leader in the field of ICT in education. “INSPIRE provides opportunities for stakeholders to engage with cutting edge ICT spaces and facilities, and will help students and teachers learn how to get the most out of new and evolving technologies,” Professor Parker said. Mr Barr said he was pleased to officially open INSPIRE, having turned the first sod to mark the start of construction of the building in December 2010. “It is a privilege to return to the University of Canberra to see this bold and innovative centre become a reality. The work underway at INSPIRE will help ensure ACT teachers are equipped with the latest ICT skills and training to prepare students for life in the 21st century,” Mr Barr said. Led by director Professor Robert Fitzgerald, INSPIRE is currently working with the University’s Faculty of Education on pre-service teacher education and the Centre for Teaching and Learning on new learning environments applying design-based approaches to learning.