Digitally Skilled: New Approaches to Engineering HE (Live webcast)

Online event free 
A live webcast featuring leading experts on innovative practice in engineering higher education to enhance digital skills.

In case anyone was still in doubt, the last few months have proved the importance of digital skills in today’s working world and employers are rapidly focusing on whether their workforce meets their needs in this regard. In few areas is this more apparent than in engineering. How then can we better develop engineering students’ digital skills?

This webcast will consider the growing need for all graduates – especially engineers – to be equipped with digital skills. From the challenges of the current crisis, in which students’ digital skills are being tested in the ways that they access education, to the post-Covid world where the digital transformation across engineering is likely to accelerate, there is a growing demand for skills that didn’t previously exist.

How then should we improve the development of the digital skills of engineering students? How can innovative teaching practice help, especially bearing in mind our own use of digital learning as a powerful tool in the pedagogical box?
We will discuss how to prepare graduate engineers for a world where continued development of new skills in the digital realm becomes the norm, how to learn from the current crisis and the pivot to online learning, and how to we ensure equipping graduates with digital skills becomes a fundamental new element of all engineering programmes.
Our panel of leading experts will explore what is possible, how to achieve it and why digital solutions need not be a replacement for traditional teaching but a way to enhance it. It will include:
  • Professor Tom Crick MBE, Professor of Digital Education & Policy at Swansea University
  • Paul Feldman, Chief Executive of Jisc
  • Dr Maria Romero-González, Director of Learning Development, the School of Engineering and Materials Science, Queen Mary University of London
  • Vinnett Taylor, Head of Internet of Things Sales at O2, Telefonica UK

See below for speaker biographies. The discussion will be chaired by Prof Mike Sutcliffe, Deputy Dean, TEDI-London and Chair of the EPC’s Engineering Education & Employability Skills Committee.

This webcast will be useful for all academics and teachers in engineering higher education and related disciplines at all levels from early careers staff to those with managerial or strategic responsibilities at faculty level. It will also interest employers, students, professional bodies and anyone with an interest in enhancing the learnign experiences of tomorrow’s engineers.

This event will be free and is open exclusively to academic staff working in member institutions of the Engineering Professors’ Council, to members of the IET and to selected guests. Registration is essential so that we can send you joining instructions.

Professor Tom Crick MBE, Professor of Digital Education & Policy at Swansea University: Tom’s academic interests sit at the research/policy interface: STEM education, science and innovation policy, digital transformation, data science, intelligent systems, and infrastructure for the digital/data economy. He is also a Commissioner of the National Infrastructure Commission for Wales, as well as a non-executive director of Dŵr Cymru Welsh Water. Tom has been heavily involved in curriculum reform in Wales: in 2013, he chaired the Welsh Government’s review of the ICT curriculum, and is currently chairing the development of the Science & Technology area of learning and experience in the new Curriculum for Wales. He was appointed MBE in the 2017 Queen’s Birthday Honours for services to computer science and the promotion of computer science education; he is a Fellow of the IET, a Chartered Engineer and a Chartered Scientist.

Paul Feldman, Chief Executive of Jisc: Jisc is the agency that provides digital and technology solutions for UK education and research and Paul has been its Chief Executive since 2015. In 2016 he was listed in The Sunday Times list of Britain’s 500 most influential in the area of engineering and technology. Before joining Jisc, Paul was most recently an executive partner at Gartner UK, a technology research and advisory firm and, before that, he spent over 20 years in financial services at Nationwide Building Society, Barclays Bank and First Data EMEA, both in IT and business roles. He has also worked in knowledge-based IT companies including Thomson Reuters Legal UK and the Intellectual Property Office. He currently sits on the GÉANT board of directors.

Dr Maria Romero-González, Director of Learning Development, the School of Engineering and Materials Science, Queen Mary University of London: Maria works in the design of science and engineering curriculum around student-centred learning and skills. She researches in the areas of digital learning, assessment and feedback and is currently exploring the use of VR in the engineering classroom.

Vinnett Taylor, Head of Internet of Things Sales at O2, Telefonica UK: Vinnett has spent her career acting as the entrepreneurial and commercial lead of multi-million-pound partnership opportunities and has a long, successful track record of first-to-market launches. She is a recognised Internet of Things (IoT) thought leader and a regular speaker at government policy and industry conferences. Prior to her current role at O2, Vinnett founded and ran a technology management consultancy company, which assisted businesses at all stages from start-ups, through growth companies and scale-ups to blue chips. Vinnett has provided strategic IT, telecommunications, M2M and IoT solutions for customers, in addition to publishing papers on the IoT. Previously, Vinnett was a partner director working at several companies including Orange, EE, Toshiba and Symantec.

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