[CONFERENCE] In the world but not of it: Keep Calm and Carry On #fandomleics

Fandom is not an area that I’m academically particularly familiar with, but as CODEC’s pitching into this event (Fandom & Religion Conference, Leicester), I thought it was an opportunity to play with some of my thoughts about the ‘fandom’ of Keep Calm and Carry On, and look specifically at those produced by/for those of faith. These are my slides from today’s session.

New Job: Senior Lecturer in Digital Marketing @ManMetUni #thisgirlcan

Just a short update. On Monday I was interviewed for the permanent role of Senior Lecturer in Digital Marketing at Manchester Metropolitan University, based at the Business School (lovely new building). I used this presentation, focusing upon #thisgirlcan as the case study for ‘best digital marketing campaign in the world’ as taught to final year undergrads! Thanks to the many people who cheered me on, and partook in discussions on Facebook/Twitter…  and the crazy buzzing noise my phone has been making since I shared the news on Facebook/Twitter! It was nice not to need to go to this interview this morning as well :-) Meantime – my new office will be in here somewhere:



I look forward to starting September 1st, in between which I will be at the Fandom and Religion Conference in Leicester, speaking at the end of New Wine A and beginning of New Wine B, writing a new chapter for the second edition of this book (pref by end of this week), article for Preach magazine, and see how far I get with a journal article on anonymity online, and a book from @bigbible… and just the small matter of completing sale on house, finding somewhere to live in Manchester, moving, and a meeting with new employers to ensure know what we’re kicking off with ready for academic year 2015/16!

P.S. Here’s a “flattering” (ha!) photo of me taking the phone call – captures the moment!

10 Successful #DigitalMarketing Case Studies


Picking out some the #DigitalMarketing Campaigns that I and others brought to mind in a quick brain-dump – asking within a lecture – do you recognise these campaigns? Students will then be sent off throughout the week to find campaigns that have inspired them (ensuring a digital element) and share on their blogs.

Don’t forget that the Cannes Lions winners list may bring some more to your attention.

Volkswagen: The Fun Theory (2009)

Movember (Annually since 2003)


Red Bull Stratos Space Jump (2012)

Gold Postboxes (2012)

Date:14/08/2012 Rep:Sophia Sleigh Ref:SU69598 Contact Name/Number: Address:Gold Post box on Ewell Road, Cheam Village Job Details:Title: rowsell Meet Joanna and photograph her with the post box painted gold in honour of her gold medal at the olympics 2012. Joanna Rowsell.

Water Aid (2010)


Frozen (2013)



Yes We Can (2008)


ComparetheMeerkat.com (2009 onwards)

Oreo (2013)


“The Ice Bucket Challenge” – ALS (2014)


Want to find some more – try these:


Prepared for a job interview! 

Flexible, Open, Social Learning: Open Education #FOS4L


So, I popped into the ‘Big Meet’ on Adobe Connect, but my internet connection not great (plus Friday evening after a long week wasn’t quite in the right ‘zone’!)

Meantime, today’s material looks at openess in education – including the OER movement, MOOCs, etc. especially as it affects informal learning, but also how such material can be repurposed for specific contexts.

Looking at the scenario today, concern is expressed by the tutor that they were ‘never given anything for free’, and are concerned that their own work may be reused by others – as a lazy way of teaching. If I think back to when I first taught, and each time I teach new material – especially when it’s something that’s pre-existed, I’ll always look to pre-existing material, but I know that the stuff that I adapt is the stuff that is strong … I have to OWN it – and surely each time we use material – share it back out and see if we can each add a new layer = deepen learning, rather than circular learning!

Also see the following video

Flexible, Open, Social Learning: Communities & Collaboration #FOS4L

“Proponents of collaborative learning have long heralded the power of well managed group-based interaction as a means of promoting positive interdependence, individual accountability, social skills, and group processing. In this third topic we will encourage learners to explore aspects of collaborative, cooperative and community learning especially in relation to networked online spaces for learning, personal learning networks and environments and discuss the relevance of peer learning and the development of learning communities in the context of self-directed and self-organised learning within and beyond institutional boundaries (formal, informal and non-formal learning).”

Scenario – developing a new online masters programme – what is required, and how much time will it take?

Pick one of the following activities:

  1. Responding: Create a response to the scenario in collaboration with others based on the discoveries you made together through investigating this. Remember, you could use FISh. (ilo-1)
  2. Reflecting: Reflect on the concept of learning communities within your own practice.  (ilo-2)
  3. Making: Create a comic that captures your thinking around collaborative learning and community as it is developing. (ilo-3)

Today, just going to refer people to this article I co-published with David Rush.

Students arrive at university having grown up in an individualistic/competitive context, so group-work can be hard, particularly once you put that online. Online need to choose appropriate materials/tasks as in face-to-face, and need to set up a sense of group-bonding – responding to queries suggesting others to connect with to prompt groupwork.

Try Wiggio or Huddle for groupwork – such software leaves traces which enables those who contribute more can have their marks adjusted, whilst the whole group also benefits.

Flexible, Open, Social Learning: Supporting Learning #FOS4L

Today we’re looking at ‘Curating’ – how do we ensure that we don’t just collect content for ourselves, but share it (combining with advice as to what is useful).

“Students expect academic, technical, administrative  and pastoral support as part of their educational provision.” – especially distance learning students, and this makes a difference to success and retention.

Undertake one of the following activities:

  1. Responding: Create a response to the scenario on your own or with others based on the discoveries you made through investigating this. Remember, you might find the FISh model useful. (ilo-1)
  2. Reflecting: Think about supporting learning and reflect on your current practice. Where are the challenges and opportunities? What could you do to help your students? (ilo-2)
  3. Making: Create a poster that provides useful tips and reminder to self and others about how to support learning effectively. Find a way to curate this resource (ilo-3)

Going for 1) – respond to scenario here, as we used student blogging for a module pretty successfully. We emphasised the fact that material going public meant that students needed to pay more attention before they pressed ‘post’, and noted that someone public giving them feedback that the tutor might have given has extra weight because it’s “real world” comments! It’s good to encourage the students that for their own learning, this is good, and to refer back to Seth Godin in 2009 – it doesn’t matter who reads it – it’s all part of learning, and as you improve – people will want to read it. The other layer that we added to it was to encourage students to comment on each other’s work (including within their small groups – who we met with regularly within teaching time to ensure progress was occurring!).

Video: the importance of teacher presence, and being aware of teacher presence was key … and not just doing things the way we thought they want, but listening to what is needed. If establish benchmark of expectation in the first 2 weeks – that is key. Online environments are much more democratic, and international students feel a space to speak up, people no longer feel like isolated learners. Use the offline/private messaging to contact a student to see if there’s a problem, or public boards that highlight the positive work that’s been done – students respond to that. Set expectations for engagement – differentiated by grade – highest grades, post, respond, synthesise.

Options to make infographics with https://infogr.am/ or http://piktochart.com/.