12th Galway Symposium on Higher Education

Fieldwork, laboratories, practical classes, skills, projects, investigations, placements and experiential learning - all topics covered in this year's Symposium, in which we celebrate the diversity of approaches to teaching and learning that are the hallmark of a vibrant university community. 

We're particularly fortunate in Galway in having a fabulous local environment to serve as a living laboratory, a landscape ripe for exploration and discovery: the Burren, the hills of Connemara, and our rich and extensive coastline, surrounded by the deep Atlantic ocean and capped by clear air and dark skies.

Join us and celebrate learning in the lab and in the environment; learning in Galway and around the world; learning by experiencing, by interacting and by making and creating.

Opening Speaker

Helen Walkington 

Oxford Brookes University, Previous Discipline Lead for Geography, Earth & Environmental Sciences (Higher Education Academy). Helen will explore the value in undergraduates participating in research and research-like activities (including fieldwork, projects, conferences, etc).


Click here for a copy of the draft programme to see how the day is structured.

Parallel Sessions/Discussion Themes

Show & Tell

Using Pecha Kucha style (20 slides x 20 seconds each) presentations to share ideas and experiences. This format is both engaging and fun and an excellent opportunity to learn a lot in a short time! 

Open Forum on Fieldwork

This session provides scope for those engaged in fieldwork and similar activities to share ideas, explore possibilities for collaboration or seek solidarity to argue for resources and support. 

Open Forum on Laboratory teaching, practicals and projects

Laboratory classes and similar practical work can be demanding of time, resources and energy. This session gives an opportunity to share ideas, to look for ways of re-invigorating (where that's necessary) lab classes and for adapting to the challenge of large student numbers. 

Exhibition, Demonstrations & Posters

If you have a poster display, multimedia demonstration, technology or even archaeological finds to show off to the rest of us, then please bring them along. We want to showcase the variety of practices and techniques in use across higher education no matter what the academic disciplne. Displays which elucidate your research interests or those of your students (postgrad or undergrad) are also very welcome if they fit the general themes of the Symposium.

Serious Play

The ever-popular Lego Serious Play (TM) workshop returns again this year, with a limited number of places. In this challenging and enjoyable session, teams will build 3D representations of defined tasks, make cases and learn how alternative approaches to problem-solving, teamwork and articulation can contribute to effective learning.

Images:  flickr CC (Attribution 2.0) Urbanists, Library & Archives Canada, CELT NUI Galway, Jean Desbiens, seriykotik1970, Eoin Gardner 

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