23 February 2015

National Student Survey: Update

The University’s average response rate for the National Student Survey 2015 is currently just over 40%.
Staff are asked to encourage all eligible students to participate in the survey by clicking on the unique link sent to their Queen’s email address or by going directly to: The survey closes on 30 April.
The telephone phase has already started; students may receive calls from Ipsos Mori if the response rate on their course is below 50%. To date, there are only a few courses across the University with response rates above this 50% threshold. 
The First and Second Year Experience Surveys will be opening soon and staff are also asked to inform students that they will shortly be receiving an email invitation from Survey Monkey to their Queen’s email address. Please encourage all students to complete their respective survey.
For further details, please contact Pat McNally on 028 9097 1435 or email
Return to Top

Team Pedometer Challenge

The University's Environmental and Staff Wellbeing teams are co-ordinating a four-week pedometer challenge to encourage staff to go walking.

Participants are encouraged to get into teams of six with a team captain taking the lead. The challenge will start on Monday 2 March and ends at 3pm on Friday 27 March 2015, inclusive. A prize will be given to the team with the most steps over the four-week period. Spot prizes will also be given.

All participants will pledge £2, which will be donated to the nominated local charity, Tiny Life, through a dedicated Just Giving page.

The challenge is a fun and easy way for you to improve your physical and mental wellbeing as well as helping the environment and reducing your carbon footprint by ditching the car or bus and walking to work.

For further information, and details of how to register, click here.

Return to Top

Internal Vacancy

This week's internal vacancy:
Temporary Clerical Officer Grade 4
Finance Directorate
Ref: 15/103768
Closing date:   Friday 27 February 2015
Anticipated interview date:  Friday 6 March 2015
Return to Top

Nominations for University Pro-Chancellor

The closing date for submitting nominations for the position of Pro-Chancellor is Friday 27 February, 4.00pm.

Nominations should be submitted to the Registrar’s Office using the approved pro forma. Further information is available here

For further details, please contact Clare Jamison in the Registrar’s Office on 028 9097 2505.

Return to Top

£ for lb 12-week Challenge: Update

Over 100 members of staff are currently taking part in the £ for lb 12-Week Challenge to lose weight and raise money for charity.

In the first three weeks, staff have lost a total of 480lbs. Congratulations to all those taking part!

Return to Top

NI Science Festival

The inaugural NI Science Festival continues this week. Events include:

  • The Sir Bernard Crossland Lecture: Alligator, Sex and Scars – Unexpected Scientific Discoveries and their Commercial Exploitation on Wednesday 25 February (6.00pm – 7.30pm), Riddel Hall
  • 'Sun Watch at Queen’s' on Saturday 28 February (11.30am  4.30pm)
  • 'I’m a Psychologist, Get Me Out Of Here' on Saturday 28 February, School of Psychology

Click here to see all the Queen's events or visit to see the full programme.

The Festival runs until 1 March.

Return to Top

The Conversation

Two Queen's articles have been published in The Conversation this week:
If you are interested in writing for The Conversation, email
Return to Top

Staff Travel Survey

Staff have until the end of this week to take part in the University’s Travel Survey.  The survey is one of the initiatives within the University's Travel Plan and its purpose is to identify the changes in staff travel patterns since the last travel survey in 2013.
Staff taking part will be entered into a prize draw – prizes include a £200 voucher for McConvey Cycles, 1st Plus Enterprise return tickets to Dublin, and Translink i-Link smartcards entitling the winners to a week’s free travel.

Click on to complete the survey.

Return to Top

Diabetes Research Information Evening

Interested in finding out more about diabetes? Staff are invited to attend an information evening on the Queen’s diabetes research programmes in the Canada Room on Tuesday 24 March from 7.00pm – 9.00pm.
The evening will include an overview of the current research from Professor Timothy Lyons, followed by brief talks from doctors and researchers working to prevent and cure diabetes and its complications. Following the short presentations there will be an opportunity to meet the clinicians and researchers.
To register your attendance, please email by Tuesday 10 March.
Return to Top

Student Volunteering Week: Monday 23 – Friday 27 February 2015

The Students' Union's Student Volunteering Week kicks off today. Volunteering is a fantastic way for students to make a positive impact on their community while developing hands-on experience and employability skills.

Throughout the Week, Volunteer SU will hold a variety of skills workshops, taster sessions, tours and info stalls, enabling students to find their perfect volunteering opportunity. 

For further information and a full schedule of events, click‌:SVW pdf. Students can book a place on the workshops, taster sessions or tours here.

Please pass this information on to students in your area.

Return to Top

Chinese New Year Celebrations at the Language Centre

Chinese New Year celebrations continue this week with a series of talks and events related to Chinese culture organised by the Language Centre. 
For more details, visit or click on the link: Chinese New Year Celebrations
If you would like to attend any of the events, please email

Return to Top

Participants Wanted for Psychology Study

The School of Psychology is looking for young adults with high functioning autism/Asperger's to participate in a study entitled ‘How do young adults think about and make plans for the future?’.  The researcher is interested in how people with autism think about the future and if this differs from their peers.

Participation takes approximately 60 minutes and involves pen and paper tasks and computer-based tasks and usually takes place in the David Keir Building; however, it is possible to meet elsewhere if this is more convenient.  All participants will be provided with a reimbursement of £8 for taking part.  Participants do not need to be affiliated with the University – anyone can take part, so please feel free to share this.

The inclusion criteria for participants are:
1. At least 18 years or older
2. Official diagnosis of high functioning autism/Asperger's

This study will run until March 2015.  For more information, please contact Jayne Hamilton at

Return to Top

Queen's Sport

Queen’s Staff Membership
There are a range of membership options available  whether you are interested in classes, racquet sports, climbing, swimming or the gym. Memberships can be paid via salary deduction which means NO admin fees. For more information, click here. To book a tour email:
Queen’s 5K 2015
The Race Around the River will take place on Wednesday 25 March at 7.00pm and this year the race has been accredited Ulster and NI Championship status. The race is open to everyone. For more information and to enter, click here.
Online Inductions
Queen's Sport have developed and introduced a compulsory in-depth, informative and innovative online Fitness Induction. These induction videos provide users with advice on how to use our facilities correctly and safely. For full details, click here.             
Mixed Touch Rugby
Queen's Sport will run the inaugural Mixed Touch Rugby Competition over four weeks on the PEC artificial pitch. Teams are made up of six with two females. £5 per person. For more information, please email
Student Intervarsities
Queen's students will be taking part in a number of intervarsity events in March at Queen’s Sport Botanic. Go along and show your support:
  • Squash: 6 – 7 March
  • Table Tennis: 6 – 8 March
  • Fencing: 14 – 15  March
  • Badminton:  20 – 22 March
Return to Top


This week at QFT:
THE PHILADELPHIA STORY: Katharine Hepburn plays the breezy socialite whose looming wedding to a self-made millionaire brings her ex-husband, Cary Grant, back into her life.
THE DUKE OF BURGUNDY: Forget Fifty Shades of Grey, Peter Strickland’s latest film reconfigures the vintage erotic melodrama into something altogether deeper and darker – the story of an amateur butterfly expert whose wayward desires test her lover’s tolerance.
LA MAISON DE LA RADIO: An illuminating, funny and touching documentary about Radio France.
JOHN LE CARRÉ: SPIES ON SCREEN AND THE SPY WHO CAME IN FROM THE COLD: An illustrated talk about John le Carré, undoubtedly the world’s greatest living espionage novelist, by Adrian Wooton, Chief Executive of Film London, followed by a special 35mm screening of The Spy Who Came In From The Cold.
Coming up from Friday: The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, It Follows, PlaySpace (gaming themed weekend).
Staff ticket price: £5; standard ticket price: £6.50. Please visit‌ for more details.
Return to Top


Continuing Professional Development

Please note that there are limited places available on each course/event and early registration is recommended.

  • Wednesday 25 February: Using the TurnitinUK Originality Checking Software (familiarity with a Windows environment is essential), 2.00pm – 4.30pm
  • Wednesday 4 March: Using Computer Assisted Assessment (including QuestionMark), 9.30am – 4.30pm. Only a few places still remaining.
  • Wednesday 4 March: Engaging Students in Assessment and Feedback, 2.00pm – 5.00pm
  • Wednesday 11 March: Creating Interactive Learning Resources using Excel 2013, 2.00pm – 5.00pm. This is an advanced Excel course – participants should have significant previous experience of using Excel 2013. Limited number of places available. 

Guest Speaker Series 2014–2015

  • Engaging home and international students: a practical theory, Wednesday 25 February, 1.30pm – 4.30pm, Seminar Room 1, IPSC. Dr Rachel Scudamore, University of Nottingham, will lead a session offering a theoretical framework for thinking about educating home and international students, and suggesting practical strategies that colleagues elsewhere have found effective in their own teaching.

Higher Education Lunchtime Forum

  • Blogging in Teaching and Learning, Wednesday 11 March, 1.00pm – 1.55pm in the Geography Building, OG/033.  The session will be led by Dr Suzel Reily, School of Creative Arts. A sandwich lunch will be provided from 12.45pm.

Courses and events can be booked via iTrent.

A full list of all CED events and courses, together with further information, can be accessed here.

Return to Top


The following February/March STDU Courses are available for booking:
  • Wednesday 25 February: Doing Focus Group Research, 9.30am – 4.30pm
  • Tuesday 3 March: Induction for All New Staff, 9.30am – 1.15pm
  • Thursday 12 March: Personnel Procedures, 10.00am – 1.00pm
  • Friday 20 March: Health and Safety Induction, 10.00am – 12.00pm
  • Tuesday 24 March: Staff Wellbeing Training – Improving Personal Resilience, 9.30am – 12.30pm
  • Wednesday 25 March: Laboratory Demonstrating for Technical Staff, 10.00am – 12.30pm
  • Thursday 26 March: Selection Interviewing, 9.15am – 4.30pm
STDU's full 2014–15 Course Programme can be viewed online here. Courses can be booked via iTrent.
Return to Top

IT Training courses

Places are available on the following courses:
  • Thursday 26 February, Introduction to Project Management and the Use of Associated Templates, 10.00am – 11.00am
  • Monday 2 March, Twitter for Beginners, 10.00am – 1.00pm
  • Wednesday 4 March, Web Authoring: Introduction to CMS (Content Management System), 10.00am – 1.00pm
  • Tuesday 10 March, Analysing Social Media Metrics Using Excel, 2.00pm – 4.30pm
  • Friday 27 March, Labels and Mail Merge, 9.30am – 12.30pm
  • Monday 30 March, Working with SharePoint (for Site Contributors), 10.00am – 12.00pm
  • Tuesday 31 March, Working with SharePoint (for Site Administrators), 2.00pm – 4.00pm
  • Tuesday 14 April, Adobe Photoshop 2: Further Topics, 9.30am – 4.30pm
  • Monday 20 April, Dynamic PowerPoint (covers ECDL Advanced), 9.30am – 12.30pm
  • Wednesday 29 April, SPSS 1: Introduction to SPSS, 9.30am – 5.00pm
A full list of semester 2 courses are available for booking on Queen’s Online. Course dates can be viewed here
ECDL –The next test date is Tuesday 24 February, 9.30am –11.00am.   For more information on ECDL, visit:
Tip of the day: Need to print your Excel spreadsheet on one page? Click the page layout tab; click launcher button on the scale to fit group; under scaling, select Fit to 1 page.
Return to Top