The OU H818 ‘The Networked Practitioner’ Online Conference 2020

The 2020 conference took place on 13-17 February 2020.

The H818 ‘The Networked Practitioner’ online module is part of the MA Online and Distance Education programme run by the Institute of Educational Technology (IET) at the Open University UK. This online conference is presented using the Open University’s Online Rooms, powered by Adobe Connect.

Each H818 student contributed a short presentation to the conference and there were keynote presentations as listed below.

  • Thurs 13th Feb Keynote: Dr Sarah Lewthwaite, Senior Research Fellow, University of Southampton Education School, UK.
  • Sat 15th Feb Keynote: Professor Martin Weller, The Open University Institute of Educational Technology, UK.
  • Mon 17th Feb Keynote: Dr Vivien Rolfe, Open educator and researcher, National Teaching Fellow (2015) and leading member of UK Open Textbook Project.

The programme includes links to the abstracts and posters for each of the students’ presentations, upon which you are invited to ask questions or make comments – these may be answered by the student on their page directly, or may be answered during their presentation itself.

Presentation Star Awards

After the conference, audience members vote for the most effective student presentations. Those receiving the most votes in each conference session receive the H818 Presentation Star award. Winners of the 2020 H818 Presentation Star awards are indicated below in the programme.


Access to the conference sessions is limited to H818 participants, MA ODE (and constituent module) students, alumni and staff, and IET and WELS staff.

Registration for the 2021 Conference will open in December 2020.

Conference Programme

Session 1: Thursday 13th February

Start Time End Time Speaker Presentation Title
09:00 09:10 Dr Leigh-Anne Perryman Welcome to the conference and brief introduction to the MAODE and other work of the Open University’s Institute of Educational Technology.
09:10 09:25 Anna Greathead The who, why, what and how of the OU blog
Presentation Star Award winner!
09:25 09:40 Will Bladon Can the use of Virtual Reality simulated hospital visits reduce anxiety for patients entering a hospital environment?
09:40 09:55 Mohammad Aminul Islam What Factors Impact on Bangladeshi Teachers’ Participation to Access in Open Education Platforms?
09:55 10:10 Jo Jones E-Portfolios – A Career Finder? Increasing employability – A guide for students to use their e-portfolio as an open and networked professional
Presentation Star Award winner!
10:10 10:25 Helen Darlaston Unlocking digital scholarship for NCT tutors
10:25 10:40 Sixbert Sangwa The use of blog to enhance students’ revision and critical reflective skills.
10:40 10:55 Allyson Giel A Picture Paints A Thousand Words: Using Images in Blended and Online Education.
10:55 11:10 Jenny Duckworth As good as gold? A guide to Open Access publishing options in ecology and conservation
Presentation Star Award winner!
11:10 11:30 BREAK
11:30 12:15 Dr Sarah Lewthwaite KEYNOTE: Researching, learning and teaching with social media: A dis/ability critical perspective.
12:15 12:30 Stephen Phipps How do we develop our digital skills and provide safety online?
Presentation Star Award winner!
12:30 12:45 Olga Yurlova Inclusion and diversity in blockchain education
12:45 13:00 Niall O’Donnellan Can Technology help educate more and/or better Leaders?
13:00 13:15 Gerard O’Malley Exploring Open Reports: the attitudes and behaviours of key staff and contributors on an Open Access Journal
13:15 13:30 Shahromey Bakri A Level Playing Field – “How OER can be used to support officers to level-up their academic skills before participating in the Command and Staff Course?”

Session 2: Saturday 15th February

Start Time End Time Speaker Presentation Title
13:00 13:30 Professor Martin Weller KEYNOTE: 25 Years Of Ed Tech.
Martin will look back over 25 years of educational technology, explore why understanding this history is important and draw out some recurring themes. There is a 25 Years blog series:
13:30 13:45 Karen Hornby Can you spare a minute? The implementation of bitesize professional development for science teachers in the UK.
Presentation Star Award winner!
13:45 14:00 Mohammad Rejaul Karim Google Classroom: An Innovation in Teaching-Learning Process to Bridge Learning Gaps in Bangladesh
14:00 14:15 Anna Page A rabbit in the headlights! Learning from doing: open practices, interpreters and educational colonialism
Presentation Star Award winner!
14:15 14:30 Miriam Moreno Perez Are Open Access journals really free to researchers?
14:30 14:45 Iroshini Ratnapala Breaking with tradition: Sri Lankan academic perspectives on adopting Open Educational Practices (OEP) for formal education
Presentation Star Award winner!
14:45 15:15 BREAK
15:15 15:30 Winston Ettienne Alleviating students’ burden: An introduction to open textbooks at the Dominica State College
15:30 15:45 Matyas Baan “Resurrecting Homo habilis”, the tool using human: a glimpse at Facebook’s potential in learning sustainable living skills
15:45 16:00 Vicki McDermott-Thompson ‘Snackable content’: developing bite-size video screencasts to support undergraduate psychology students’ learning.
16:00 16:15 Tabitha Naisiko Medical Volunteerism as a Tool for Open Education and Social Inclusion in Uganda
16:15 16:30 Jess Morrin Crocodile English: Can virtual learning environments offer intercultural learning opportunities for English as an Additional Language learners?
Presentation Star Award winner!
16:30 16:45 Ayodele Odeogbola Design of Edubox – A low cost technological tool for advancing inclusion of digital education in developing regions with no access to internet
Presentation Star Award winner!
16:45 17:00 Deb Hobbs Stop milking the international cash cow. Inclusivity and success for international students – A critical review of Bloomsbury Learning Environment’s (BLE) Digital Skills Awareness Course
17:00 17:15 Jennifer Noyes Conquering Pain FRCA: Creating a new Multimedia eLearning Platform for Junior Doctors

Session 3: Monday 17th February

Start Time End Time Speaker Presentation Title
19:00 19:30 Dr Vivien Rolfe KEYNOTE: “Once an open practitioner, always an open practitioner”. How being open-oriented helps with transitions between jobs and personal growth.
19:30 19:45 Tim Cunningham How secondary teachers can develop themselves professionally using Open Educational Resources.
19:45 20:00 Eileen Vard Connecting Family Therapists across Ireland
20:00 20:15 Bindi Clements The Story of Sharing Stuff: Building a network for sharing open educational resources for using smartphones in the language classroom
Presentation Star Award winner!
20:15 20:30 Adam Reeves Destroy your PowerPoint demons! Sudden Death! Implementing VR in a vicarious setting and moving away from the over-reliance on PowerPoint in the training environment.
Presentation Star Award winner!
20:30 20:45 Abigail Reid Practical Primaries – An innovative, open, multimedia resource to help Primaryteachers deliver practical science in their classroom.
20:45 21:00 Stephen Rice Jekyll not hide: Using distributed software development techniques to build scaffolded learning resources in the open
21:00 21:30 BREAK
21:30 21:45 Karen Martinez Swimming with the Tide: Introducing open digital technologies into the preparation of student-teachers’ portfolio at a selected junior college in Belize.
21:45 22:00 Robert Carter Digital Design for Inclusive Learning
Presentation Star Award winner!
22:00 22:15 Coral Condeco-Dunachie OpenTalk: An Online Learning Community and Website to Support Perinatal Mental Health
Presentation Star Award winner!
22:15 22:30 Amanda Wilford Mind the G-ap: Integrating digital communication tools within a team
22:30 22:45 Harald Sprengel Clash of cultures – Using learners’ motivation to determine a tool to learn about cultural diversity in the workplace.