Education, and the way students learn, is changing all the time.
Digifest 2019 gave us the chance to find out more about the emerging trends in Higher Education, see how technology is influencing teaching and learning and listen to case studies from universities across the country forging ahead with these new developments.
The two day event at the ICC in Birmingham was packed with insights, tips and emerging trends from the HE and FE sectors.
At Pearson, we create tools to support learners at every stage of their journey. Hearing from those institutions using technology to improve learner experiences was a great way to really understand the challenges facing leaders today.
Hundreds of delegates took part in workshops, interactive presentations and heard from some of the leading voices on digital developments in teaching and learning.
Anne-Marie Imafidon MBE, CEO of Stemettes, opened the event with a keynote speech asking the question: What kind of world are we educating for?
She highlighted key trends coming into the world of HE including the Internet of Things, Virtual Reality, Artificial Intelligence and Voice Recognition and she used real world examples of how these technological advances have been used.
Anne-Marie also spoke about the perceptions of STEM and highlighted the importance of dismantling the barriers women and girls face.
Preparing students for the future
Employability was another hot topic of this year’s Digifest. With 90% of all jobs in the next two decades requiring digital skills but 23% of adults lacking the basics, it is more important than ever to ensure students leave education with the right knowledge.
University of Central Lancashire presented their solution for teaching students what they need to be successful in the modern workplace.
The university developed “DigiReady” – a certification which includes targeted digital skills developed by working with Microsoft.
Students also produce a portfolio, showreel or document as part of this certification which is used as evidence to give to employers.
"90% of all jobs in the next two decades are requiring digital skills but 23% of adults lacking the basics, it is more important than ever to ensure students leave education with the right knowledge."
- Digifest 2019
As well as pitches and lightning talks, visitors to Digifest were able to take part in the debate live by using a question and answer tool which displayed the contributions on the presentation screen.
Other topics explored throughout the event included the role technology plays in supporting mental health as well as diversity in education and using AI chatbots to support students and staff.