As you have picked up from the title, the recent Show & TEL event on ‘Progress with Digitally Ready’ was a success for me! I was excited to find out more about other projects here at the University of Reading that Digitally Ready had funded, and to talk about my on work and what I had achieved on my project.
The projects discussed ranged from a longitudinal survey of students using technology to the modification of the Blackboard VLE to include an e-Learning Support tab. There was very little similarity between any of the projects. However, it was clear that every project had the same aim in mind: to increase digital opportunities and on the whole to enhance the teaching and learning experience for staff and students here at Reading. To find out more about this eventful day, see Nadja Guggi’s blog post ‘Progress with Digitally Ready: top down, bottom up’.
My Prezi presentation, ‘Back to work: Existing and Emerging Biotechnologies (EEB)’, went down a treat; it didn’t cause any motion sickness and ran smoothly. It was a great experience being the only student in a room of academics, despite the intensive quizzing and questioning!
Conscious that I only had five minutes to present, I had to find a way to say everything I wanted in such a small space of time. I started my presentation by giving the audience an overview of work done as part of my placement last summer. Once I had given enough context, I moved on to discussing my current works of the placement which included: lecture breakdown; working with technology and co-authorship of my first academic paper.
I told the audience of the main difference between the ‘Integrated Systems Approach’ module presently being developed and the ‘Genome to Proteome’ module which was developed during my previous placement, with the former module being far more computationally-based. As an example, I detailed a proposed lecture structure for a topic within the module called ‘Structure based drug design’.
‘Working with technology’ was perhaps the most relevant slide for this showcase. I explained my use of video-editing software in interview-editing or for making videos to put in lectures. I also showed them a video I had created, detailing the abilities of the e-Learning package Articulate, the software we have chosen for online delivery of the EEB modules. I even showed off some of my skills with PyMOL, a protein visualisation package.
I also ran through my discovery of publishing in the academic world, my struggles, and my hope to publish my work in a Teaching & Learning journal.
Finally, I summed up what I feel I got out of my Digitally Ready placement in terms of skills. I wouldn’t have been able to secure my next placement without it – as a web assistant (combined with some research and development work) with British American Tobacco.
All in all, I found all the talks very informative. The experience was thoroughly enjoyable and has increased my confidence for subsequent public speaking events. A big pat on my shoulders and thanks to the Digitally Ready team, and to Tee Nadan and Kim Watson for giving me this opportunity.