1 December 2014

Academic Affairs: New Website

Academic Affairs has launched a new website, accessible at:

The front page highlights the main themes of work, and the Resource Library (available in the Key Site Links) provides a comprehensive set of links, arranged by theme, to all of the downloadable resources that are linked throughout the Academic Affairs website (for example, forms, guidelines, flowcharts etc).  If your own website has any links to information presented in Academic Affairs' previous website, please update these to direct to the new site.

The quality assurance of the student experience is the responsibility of each member of staff at the University; however, Academic Affairs plays a particular role in that the department has responsibility for the oversight of the framework of the approval and review of all programmes, including Research Degrees and Collaborative Agreements.  The department also supports a number of the Committees in the University’s academic governance structure, provides advice and guidance on the application of Student Regulations and oversees University compliance with the Quality Assurance Agency’s Higher Education Quality Code.

The new site aims to make it easier for staff and students to navigate and access information.  Academic Affairs would welcome your feedback, which can be forwarded directly to the relevant member of staff, or directed to

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Latest edition of Queen's Now

The latest edition of Queen's Now is available here.

This month's edition includes: a Q&A with the winner of this year's Vice-Chancellor's Impact Prize, Professor Chris Elliott; profiles of three members of staff celebrating 25 years at the University; and an interview with Director of Innovation, Brian McCaul, to find out about the role universities play in the knowledge economy.

Also included are some of the staff who feature in the new DNA of Innovation publication and a new regular feature on Staff Wellbeing at Queen's.

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Information Services Coffee Morning: 4 December

The Information Services Coffee Morning will take place on Thursday 4 December, from 10.00am, in the Great Hall.  Last year the Coffee Morning raised over £5,000. This year’s charity is Cancer Lifeline. 

As usual, ballots will be on sale with lots of prizes on offer. If you or your department are interested in donating a prize for the ballot, please contact Michelle Cross, 028 9097 6249; Valerie Hamilton, 028 9097 6254; or Christine Carrothers, 028 9097 6322. 

Ballots are on sale now, up to and during the event. If you would like a member of staff from Information Services to call over to your department with the ballots before the event, please place the request with one of the above contacts.  It is advisable to buy the ballots in advance if possible.

Various foods and crafts will be on sale on the day.

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Latest video blog from the Vice-Chancellor

To watch the last video blog from the Vice-Chancellor, click here‌‌.

A transcript of the video is available on the Vice-Chancellor's blog page.

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New Exhibition Opening at Naughton Gallery

The exhibition, Mark Gilbert: Saving Faces, opens at the Naughton Gallery on Tuesday 2 December, 6.00pm – 9.00pm.

BP National Portrait award winner Mark Gilbert produced these works during a three year period as artist-in-residence in the Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery at St. Bartholomew’s and the Royal London Hospital.  The paintings portray the faces of patients before, after and, in some cases, actually during their surgery for injury, deformity or cancer. Presented in partnership with the British Dental Association, Northern Ireland Branch, in association with Saving Faces, the exhibition runs until 1 February 2015.‌

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Gallery Store Clearance Sale: Monday 8 December

Members of staff are invited to a Gallery Store Clearance Sale in the Naughton Gallery on Monday 8 December from 12.30pm to 2.00pm. Unwanted frames, reproductions and photographs will be available on a first come, first served basis in return for a small donation towards the 2015 exhibition programme.

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Visit to Queen’s by the Chief Executive of the Arts & Humanities Research Council (AHRC)

Research Development has organised a high profile visit to Queen’s by Professor Rick Rylance (AHRC Chief Executive and Chair of RCUK Executive Group) on Monday 8 December. An open meeting for arts and humanities researchers and others interested in the development of the AHRC’S strategy will take place from 11.15am – 12.00pm in the Canada Room (Please note change of time).

This will provide a unique opportunity to hear first-hand about the future strategy and priorities of the AHRC and to discuss these with Professor Rylance. Research Development strongly encourage all staff with an interest in Arts and Humanities research funding to come along. Prior registration is not required.

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Volunteer SU

Volunteering is an essential part of student development and the student experience. 

Volunteer SU, based in the Students’ Union, helps students to find their perfect volunteering opportunity and supports them through a range of programmes, from one-to-one guidance sessions to skills-focussed programmes and workshops.

They also ensure that students get recognition for their volunteering through Degree Plus and the Millennium Volunteers Award, which are supported by the Department of Education, and the Volunteering Excellency Awards.

If any students you are working with require volunteering support, please put them in touch with the Volunteer and Development Support Officer at Queen’s Students’ Union, Lucia Kearney, 028 9097 3951,,

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The Conversation

Two articles by Queen's academics have been published in The Conversation:

If you are interested in writing for The Conversation, please contact


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Blazing a Trail – Women in IT: 9 December

An event to promote Female Entrepreneurship in the IT sector will take place on Tuesday 9 December in the Great Hall from 5.00pm – 7.30pm. 

Hosted by Women Who Code Belfast and The Chief Executives’ Club at Queen’s, Blazing a Trail – Women in IT brings together speakers from different ends of the entrepreneurship spectrum, and provides an opportunity for you to engage with them in a Question and Answer session after their talks.

For information on the speakers and to register for the event, click here or email

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RAE Armstrong Public Lecture Series: We're all mutants

The final lecture in The RAE Armstrong Public Lecture Series 2014 takes place this week.  Dr David Timson, Reader in Biochemistry, will deliver the lecture, We're all mutants, on Wednesday 3 December, 4.00pm in the Medical Biology Centre, Lecture Theatre 1.

Refreshments will be served after the lectures from 5.00pm.

Please RSVP to if you wish to attend.

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Christmas Countdown at the Welcome Centre

Staff are invited to come along to the Welcome Centre where there are Christmas gift ideas for everyone. There are gadgets for him, jewellery for her and even clothes for the little one.

While in store, why not pick up a packet of Northern Ireland Children’s Hospice Christmas cards.

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Staff Offer at Blackwell's Bookshop

Staff are reminded that Blackwell's Bookshop in the Students’ Union offers a 10% discount on books and gifts to Queen's staff.

The offer includes 10% discount on top of any discount already shown; such as on calendars, hardbacks, 3 for 2 offers and online offers (Terms and Conditions apply).
Pop in Monday to Friday, 9.00am to 5.00pm, or visit

This offer excludes the sale of gift cards and electronic devices such as e-readers.

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Academic Diaries now available at SU Shop

Su ShopThe SU Shop is now stocking 2015 academic diaries (both branded and non-branded). 

Departmental purchases can be organised via internal journal recharge. You can also set up an Account Card to make purchases of stationery and other items from the SU Shop.
A 20% discount will available throughout December and January for all internal recharge and account stationery purchases over £25 (including full-price 2015 diaries). For further information about the offer and guidance on setting up an account, please contact, 028 9097 1048.
The Students’ Union Shop is owned and operated by Queen’s with all profits reinvested to improve the Students’ Union facilities and enhance the student experience.
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Queen's Sport

Survive and Save
Enrolment is now open for The Bronze Medallion Lifesaving Award. This is a fantastic entry level into the Survive and Save Awards because it informs and challenges you with basic rescue, self-rescue and survival techniques along with water hazards.

For further information and an enrolment form, please click here.

‌Online Inductions
Queen's Sport has developed a compulsory in-depth, informative and innovative online Fitness Induction. These induction videos will provide users with advice on how to use our facilities correctly and safely.

For full details, click here.

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This week at QFT

STAR TRACKS: SOUNDS OF SCI-FI: A week of screenings celebrating iconic Sci-Fi soundtracks includes the thought-provoking, horrifying and just plain cheesy classics: The Day the Earth Stood Still, Stalker, John Carpenter's The Thing and, because who can forget Queen's spectacularly catchy soundtrack, Flash Gordon.

2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY: For many, quite simply the greatest Sci-Fi film ever made and the standard against which all others are still measured.  Co-written by Kubrick and novelist Arthur C. Clarke, 2001’s epic canvas follows the evolution of human ‘civilisation’ – from prehistoric apes through to mankind’s journey to the stars, all under the influence of mysterious black monoliths.

THE DROP: Starring Tom Hardy, Noomi Rapace and James Gandolfini in his last role, this gritty crime drama is the latest from Michael R. Roskam, the Academy Award-nominated director of Bullhead. The Drop follows lonely bartender, Bob (Tom Hardy), in an underworld of Brooklyn gangsters. When a robbery goes awry, friends, families and foes are forced to work together  no matter what the cost.

LEVIATHAN: Winner of Best Film at the 2014 London Film Festival and a screenplay award at Cannes, the latest film from acclaimed director Andrey Zvyagintsev (Elena, The Return) is a gripping and complex study of corrupt politics in Putin's Russia.

Coming up from Friday: St. Vincent, Stations of the Cross, The Grandmaster

Please visit for more details.

The QFT Christmas programme is now available for bookings:

Staff ticket price: £5; standard ticket price: £6.50.

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Selection Interviewing Refresher Training

The Human Resources Directorate has recently produced an online refresher training package for Selection Interviewing and this is now available via  Queen’s Online,  located under ‘Services’, ‘Other’ then ‘Online Training’.

The online training session lasts approximately 30 minutes and is aimed at those members of staff who have previously undertaken the one day Selection Interviewing course provided by the Staff Training and Development Unit, and who wish to refresh their training.  Staff are therefore very much encouraged to undertake the session.

The Refresher training is not a substitute for the main course and staff who will be involved in selection interviewing and who have not already done so, are still required to attend the one day course.  This course runs on a monthly basis and those staff who will be involved in interview and selection should attend the course and enrol on a timely basis.

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Places are available on the following course:

  • Wednesday 14 January and Wednesday 28 January, 2.00pm – 5.00pm on both dates: Experiencing and Facilitating Online Learning. This is a two-session course with online activities taking place between sessions.  Participants must have some knowledge of Queen’s Online.

For further courses, please click here.

Guest Speaker Series 20142015 – 4 December 2014

Thursday 4 December: Fit for purpose: diversifying assessment for 21st century education.  Sue Bloxham, Emeritus Professor of Academic Practice at the University of Cumbria and higher education consultant, will lead this interactive workshop between 10.00am – 1.00pm in the Senate Room.

For further details click here or contact, 028 9097 1447.

Registration for all courses and events is via Queen’s Online.

CED 9th Annual Conference

25 June 2015: Blending the Learning: Incorporating Technology in Your Teaching, 10.00am – 1.00pm, Council Chamber/Canada Room.

Keynote speakers include Mark Brown, Director of the Institute for Digital Learning, DCU, and Russell Stannard, Principal Teaching Fellow at the University of Warwick.

Further details available in due course from

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Staff Training and Development Unit

Places are available on the following training courses:

  • Wednesday 3 December: Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (CoSHH), 10.00am – 12.30pm
  • Thursday 4 December: Planning Your Research Career, 4 December, 9.30am – 1.00pm
  • Tuesday 16 December: Health and Safety Induction, 16 December, 10.00am – 12.00pm

The full 2014–15 Course Programme can be viewed online at:

To book a place on a training course, log onto Queen's Online, then select 'Training Courses' from the list on the left of the page and follow the link for iTrent Self Service.

Financial Assistance

The budget allocated for funding towards staff applications for Short Courses/Conferences and Part-time Courses of Study offered by Staff Training and Development Unit for the current academic year 2014–15 has been fully allocated.

Staff who have received confirmation of support are encouraged to submit the relevant information as outlined in their confirmation communication as soon as possible so that funding can be processed.  It is the staff member’s responsibility to ensure that they have read and complied with the guidelines and information provided.

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IT Training courses

Places are available on the following courses:

  • Tuesday 16 December: Web Authoring: Introduction to CMS (Content Management System), 10.00am – 1.00pm
  • Wednesday 7 January: Web Authoring: Introduction to CMS (Content Management System), 10.00am – 1.00pm
  • Tuesday 13 January: Outlook: Making Best Use of Outlook 2013, 9.30am  1.00pm
  • Tuesday 27 January: Working with SharePoint (for Site Contributors), 10.00am – 12.00pm
  • Thursday 29 January: Working with SharePoint (for Site Administrators (Owners) and Site Contributors), 10.00am – 12.00pm
  • Tuesday 3 February: Adobe Photoshop 1: Basic Digital Image Editing, 9.30am – 12.30pm
  • Monday 9 February: Excel 1: Essentials (ECDL - Spreadsheets), 10.00am – 1.00pm

201415 Semester 2 courses are now available for booking on Queen’s Online.  Course dates can be viewed at:

ECDL – The new improved test system allows the candidate to practice and diagnose what topics need revision (note – this is not used for ECDL Advanced).  For more information on ECDL, visit:

•    Today’s Tip: To transfer very large files, try QUB Dropbox  (files can be up to 1 Gb).

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