21 March 2016

Core Values Update

Core ValuesLast month, the University launched its Core Values campaign to encourage staff to get involved in helping to shape our Core Values.

Over 600 staff shared their views through the ‘Coffee, Cake and Core Values’ events and online. The values were also discussed at a Senior Managers’ Workshop for academic support staff and at the recent Senior Managers’ Retreat, chaired by the Vice-Chancellor. Plans are now underway for a further ‘Coffee, Cake and Core Values’ event with the Students’ Union.

As well as voting on suggested values, staff were asked to propose a new value and explain what it means to them. An overview of the feedback, including the top ten values that have emerged, are contained in the following presentation: Core Values Feedback

Due to the large number of responses and level of engagement, work is ongoing to distil the feedback which will help define the final four/five Core Values and the descriptors which will bring them to life. Once approved by UEB in April, the Core Values will be communicated to all staff. The values will then be embedded in the new corporate plan with Faculties, Schools and Directorates asked to consider how they can be embedded within each area.

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Pedometer Challenge

This year’s Pedometer Challenge will run from Monday 11 April – Friday 6 May 2016.

Co-ordinated by the Environmental and Wellbeing teams, the four-week challenge is a fun and easy way for you to get walking outdoors and improve your physical and mental wellbeing. It is also an opportunity to help the environment by reducing your carbon footprint and ditching the car or bus and walking to work.

As well as being a great team building activity, you’ll also be raising money for charity. All participants will pledge £2, which will be donated to the nominated local charity. Find out how to get involved.

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New Head of School of Politics, International Studies and Philosophy

Further to Professor David Phinnemore taking up the post of AHSS Faculty Dean of Education, Professor Yvonne Galligan has been appointed as the interim Head of the School of Politics, International Studies and Philosophy, with effect from Monday 14 March 2016. All circulation lists should be updated accordingly.

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Staff Survey: April 2016

Staff Survey logo

There are just two weeks left until the launch of the Staff Survey which will run from Monday 4 – Friday 22 April 2016.

The survey is being conducted by ORC International, an independent researcher organisation. On Monday 4 April, staff will receive an email from ORC containing a link to the survey. 

Further information is available on the Play Your Part webpages or contact

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Twitter Takeover with Queen's Head Gardener

To coincide with National Gardening Week 2016 (11–17 April), Queen’s Head Gardener, Paul Wallace, will take over the @QUBstaff Twitter account on Friday 15 April 2016 between 1.00pm–2.00pm for a special live chat. Paul will be offering tips and advice for the green-fingered and answering your questions about gardening and the Queen’s estate.

If you would like Paul’s professional advice on a gardening issue, please tweet your question to @QUBStaff or email it to (including your Twitter handle in your email if you have one) before 11.00am on Friday 15 April 2016. You can follow the conversation using the hashtag #QUBstaff.

Find out more about Paul's role here.

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Postgraduate Taught Experience Survey (PTES)

PTES HEA logoLast week, Queen's launched the Postgraduate Taught Experience Survey (PTES), a national survey to gather feedback from postgraduate taught students. PGT students have received an email with a link to the survey in their Queen’s email account, and staff are asked to remind them to participate.

With Vision 2020’s focus on postgraduate students, there could be no better time for our postgraduate taught student population to provide views on their experience at Queen’s. Course Co-ordinators, Advisers of Study, lecturers and other staff involved in postgraduate taught provision are asked to encourage the students in their Schools to take part.

The closing date is Thursday 16 June 2016. Students who complete the survey will be entered into a draw to win £250.

For further information contact Jane McKee:

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The Library: Easter Opening Hours

The University Library will be closed from Friday 25 March – Tuesday 29 March 2016 inclusive, however, study facilities will be available in the McClay Library from 9.00am – 9.00pm on both Good Friday and Easter Tuesday. There will be no staffed services on those dates. Normal term-time opening resumes on Wednesday 30 March 2016.

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The Conversation

The Conversation ‌Click on the links to read the latest Queen's articles published in The Conversation:

If you are interested in writing for The Conversation, contact to find out more.


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QPol Policy Engagement and Research Blog

Click on the link to read the latest post from the QPol Policy Engagement and Research Blog:

  • Democracy Without Politicians?: Professor John Garry looks at the idea of deliberative democracy in Northern Ireland and asks if the idea of "randomocracy" can enhance the quality of governance by involving citizens in decision making.
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School of History and Anthropology Newsletter

Read the latest School of History and Anthropology Newsletter (February 2016).

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QUBAN seminar

QUBAN Seminar SeriesThe cross-faculty QUBAN (Queen’s University Anti-Microbial Network) group invites all interested staff and students to the second talk in its seminar series: 'Designing microbial coatings for medical devices with potential theranostic activity'. The seminar will be given by Dr Toby Jenkins of the Department of Chemistry, Bath University.

The event will take place on Wednesday 20 April 2016 at 2.30pm in MBC, Room G23ST.

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Open Access courses

There are places available on the following Open Access courses:

•    Monday 4 April: What is Open Access?, 2.00pm – 3.00pm, McClay Library Auditorium
•    Wednesday 6 April: How to comply with HEFCE’s Open Access Policy for the REF, 2.00pm – 3.00pm, McClay Library Auditorium

To register, login to Queen's Online and click ‘Training Courses’ from the ‘Other’ section. Alternatively, email Open Access to ask the Open Access team to book the course(s) on your behalf.

The full training schedule is available on the Open Access LibGuide.

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Queen's Sport

Queen's Sport 210316Queen’s 5k/3k: Wednesday 20 April
This year's Queen’s 5k Race takes place on Wednesday 20 April 2016. Entries are filling up fast, so pre-enter online today to avoid disappointment.

If you prefer a shorter distance, Queen's Sport has introduced the inaugural Queen’s 3k race which is open to runners from age 9. Make it a family affair and come down and enjoy the races, awards ceremony and free pizza.

Click here to enter for this year’s races.

£1 Membership upgrade
Queen's Sport are offering a special promotion for all current Staff Fitness, Swim and Off Peak members to try out an upgrade to an All Inclusive Peak membership for only an extra £1.

Broaden your experience and try out Queen's Sport's full range of facilities, including 70+ classes, swimming pools and gyms. The offer runs for one month from the date it is taken out and will automatically revert back to your original membership unless a request to permanently upgrade has been made. To avail of the offer, just come to PEC reception and pay the £1 to start the full Queen’s Sport Experience.  Offer ends Thursday 31 March 2016.

To speak to a member of staff about this offer or about membership of Queen’s Sport, contact 028 9038 7684/5 or email

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QFT 210316This week at QFT:

High-Rise – Tom Hiddleston stars in Ben Wheatley's (Kill List, Sightseers) much-anticipated adaptation of J.G. Ballard's savage, brilliant 1975 novel, a satire of Thatcherite excess and consumerist values.

Anomalisa – The latest brainteaser from the mastermind behind films like Being John Malkovich and Adaptation is a tender, touching and achingly funny stop-motion animation.

The Pearl Button – Patricio Guzmán turns his masterful eye to the ocean to uncover the history of the indigenous people of Patagonia.

From Friday 25 March 2016: Sing Street, Classic Kid’s Films Season, The Rising on Screen Season.

Queen's staff ticket price: £5 (standard ticket price: £6.70). Please visit for more details.

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Welcome Centre

Welocme Centre 210316An alternative to chocolate this Easter, a collection of individually crafted, charming and unique laser cut eggs and rabbits by designer Jenny Walsh is now in stock in the Welcome Centre.

Staff receive 10% discount.

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Continuing Professional Development

Upcoming courses are listed below. Please note that there are limited places available on each course/event so early registration is recommended.

  • Wednesday 6 April: Using the Personal Response System in your Classes, 2.00pm – 4.30pm. Some previous experience with PowerPoint is necessary for attendance at this workshop.
  • Wednesday 13 April: Using Computer Assisted Assessment (including QuestionMark), 9.30am – 4.30pm
  • Wednesday 13 April: Evaluation of Teaching: 2.00pm – 5.00pm
  • Wednesday 27 April: Becoming a Fellow of the HE Academy:  2.00pm – 4.30pm

Lunchtime Assessment Seminars
In response to a call from the Schools and Faculties at Queen's, the Centre for Educational Development will run a series of Lunchtime Assessment Seminars to address any final outstanding concerns regarding new assessment strategies. The sessions will run from 1.10pm – 1.50pm, with tea and coffee at 1.00pm. Please feel free to bring your own lunch.  As there will be a limited number of places available at the sessions, booking early is recommended.

  • Wednesday 13 April: Action planning for formative assessment
  • Wednesday 27 April: Writing learning outcomes to support and guide good learning and teaching

To book a place, 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'.

A full list of all CED events and courses together with further information can be accessed on the CED website.

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Training and DevelopmentThe following Staff Training and Development courses are available for booking:

  • Wednesday 13 April: Control of Substances Hazardous to Health, 10.00am – 12.30pm
  • Thursday 14 April: Preparing for Academic Interviews, 9.30am – 1.00pm
  • Wednesday 20 April: An Introduction to Cultural Awareness and Sensitivity, 9.30am – 12.30pm
  • Wednesday 27 April: Career Exploration for Researchers, 9.30am – 1.00pm
  • Thursday 28 April: The Engaging Researcher, 9.30am – 1.00pm

Follow us on Twitter @QueensStaffDev

To register for an upcoming training course, log onto Queens Online, then select 'Training Courses' from the list on the left of the page and follow the link for 'iTrent Self Service'.

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IT Training courses

ComputersPlaces are available on the following courses:

  • Monday 11 April: Blogging for Researchers, 2.00pm – 5.00pm
  • Thursday 14 April: Word Processing: Tables and Form Design using Word, 9.30am – 12.30pm
  • Friday 15 April: Advanced Word Processing: Making Best Use of Word, 9.30am – 4.00pm
  • Monday 18 April: Excel 2: Managing Data, 2.00pm – 5.00pm
  • Monday 18 April: Word Processing: Labels and Mail Merge using Word, 9.30am – 12.30pm

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'. Course dates can be viewed here. Please note that PGR students have a separate programme organised through The Graduate School.

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).  Click here for more information on ECDL.

The next test date is Tuesday 22 March, 1.00pm – 2.30pm.

Tip of the day: If your Excel data file contains a pound sign and decimal places, or contains a date, these will be ignored or the format may be different when you carry out a mail merge. This can be prevented by modifying the field switches. To find out more, register via iTrent for the 'Labels and Mail merge' course, which will be held on Monday 18 April.

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