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  • School of CS newsletter

    Published: Tuesday, 03 November 2015

    Weekly newsletter for the School of CS

    [ top ]News from Head of School

    Computer Science launches a major initiative for schools

    The School of Computer Science has been awarded Department for Education funding to develop a Computing at Schools Regional Centre to support Primary and Secondary schools in the region delivering high-quality computing for schoolchildren. This award recognises the long-term commitment of the School of Computer Science to education in schools through its staff and students, providing training for teachers and opportunities for schoolchildren to engage with exciting activities in Computer Science. The policy for computing in schools has changed and there is the expectation that all schools will offer a broad education in computing. Many schools do not have the expertise to deliver this and so support mechanisms are being put in place through the Regional Centre.


    The Regional Centre was launched at a conference on Saturday 17th October, with over 100 teachers attending, as well as representatives from the Department for Education and the British Computer Society. Prof. Danielle George delivered a well-received keynote talk, addressing issues in teaching computing from Primary level, through Secondary level to University education. There were almost 30 workshops delivering material for teachers to take into the classroom. The conference was an exciting event and there was a real buzz amongst the teachers about the prospects for computing in schools in the region.


    In a joint venture, BBC and Microsoft are to offer free to Secondary schools large numbers of Micro:Bit computers to distribute to schoolchildren. This has the potential to be a major step forward in the delivery of Computer Science in schools.  As part of the Regional Centre activities, we have collaborated with BBC and Microsoft to deliver a workshop for teachers to help them develop classroom activities using the Micro:Bit computers.

    Picture shows Professor Danielle George's keynote talk: 'Where the magic happens'.


    gravatar Jim Miles

    Eva Navarro López in interactive show "Ada.Ada.Ada"

    Eva Navarro López ( was one of the panelists in the post-show discussion in the interactive show "Ada.Ada.Ada" dedicated to Ada Lovelace, creator of the world's first computer programme circa 1843. This is part of the Manchester Science Festival and was held at the Lowry Theatre, Friday 30th October, 2015. More information is available at

    gravatar Bryony C Quick

    Workplace giving

    The University encourages all staff to consider payroll giving, and the staff who use the scheme give over £100k per year to charities. In payroll giving regular payments to charities can be deducted from pay at source before the deduction of tax, so that charities also receive the tax that you would have paid on your donation. The Workplace Giving scheme that the University uses highlights a number of charities in different categories but you can give to any registered UK charity through the same system. See the staffnet webpage for more details.

    gravatar Jim Miles

    Research IT

    IT Services has formed a research IT team of Team of 25 people, who have a new website.

    To keep you informed of what they are doing they will be producing new brochures and newsletters (online as well as hard copy) and reviewing the engagement they undertake via clubs and surgeries and have several additional new communications initiatives planned for 2016.

    gravatar Jim Miles

    Play with robots

    Manchester will be hosting the European City of Science in 2016. As part of the celebrations, Danielle George from the School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering is planning to build the world’s largest robot orchestra. She’s seeking help from engineers, programmers, musicians and makers to make it happen. Interested? Attend the start-up event on Weds 18 November at The Shed (MMU). Danielle is FEPS Associate Dean for Teaching and Learning.

    gravatar Jim Miles

    [ top ]News and announcements

    Precinct bridge demolition

    The University has published a timelapse video of the Precinct Centre bridge being demolished in the summer.

    gravatar Jim Miles

    Join the experiment

    You are invited to take part in an on line study conducted by researchers from the University of Manchester. In this study, we are evaluating a tool which helps people decide if they need to see a doctor about certain symptoms. You can take part if you, or someone you know, has any of the following symptoms:

    •  A cough (whether dry and tickly or productive with phlegm)
    • A long-standing cough that changes or gets worse
    • Feeling out of breath
    • Discomfort in the chest, shoulder or back
    • Coughing up phlegm with blood in it (even if just a few specks) / spitting blood
    • Changes in your voice
    • Unexplained weight loss or unexplained  loss of appetite
    • Swelling of face and neck
    • Persistent / recurring chest infections
    • Tiredness or lack of energy
    •  Any changes in the appearance of the fingers or finger nails (such as a softening of the nailbed, stronger than normal curving of the fingernails, or thickening of the fingertips)

    In this study, you will be asked a few questions about yourself or the person who is having the symptoms. After that you will be presented with some information about the symptoms that will help you decide if you need to see a doctor. You can also take part if you have already been to a doctor, if the symptoms are still unresolved.


    Please note you can only participate if you are aged 18 or over and if you live in the UK. You should only take part if you do not know what is causing the symptoms.

    If you would like to find out more or take part, please visit:

    Or contact, telephone: 0161 275 7821.

    gravatar Jim Miles

    [ top ]Events

    Manchester Informatics Seminar on 'Addressing Global Inequality'

    UN Global Goals and Human Behaviour: Results-based Management or Changing Social Norms or Celebrity Advocacy?

    Date: Monday 30th November 2015

    Venue: Mansfield Cooper G.19 (No. 65 on the campus map)

    Time: 13-14:00


    Manchester Informatics are pleased to announce that the first event in this year's cycle of the Human Behaviour Seminar Series will take place on 30th November 2015. This year's themes are the Universities five research beacons.


    Professor David Hulme from the Brooks World Poverty Institute will present-UN Global Goals and Human Behaviour: Results-based Management or Changing Social Norms or Celebrity Advocacy?


    The UN General Assembly has moved on from the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) of 2000-2015 to halve poverty to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of eradicating poverty by 2030, promoting global social justice/reducing inequality and achieving sustainability. The original framing of the MDGs was from results-based management – SMART goals/targets/ indicators will lead to behaviours that will accelerate global social progress. This remains the frame for the SDGs but they are (i) linked to the ‘leave no-one behind’ slogan, and (ii) accompanied by a major attempt, led by Richard Curtis, to communicate the 17 SDGs through social media and celebrity advocacy. This work-in-progress presentation examines the framing of the goals and argues that the goals, and the processes surrounding them, are not focussing sufficiently on the ‘grassroots’ and changing international social norms…they may even be fostering ‘post-democratic’ political behaviours.


    David Hulme is Professor of Development Studies at the University of Manchester where he is Director of the Brooks World Poverty Institute. David has worked on rural development, poverty and poverty reduction, microfinance, the role of NGOs in development, environmental management, social protection and the political economy of global poverty for more than 30 years.


    Light refreshments will be provided.

    To register your place please click here: Register.


    For further info on the Human Behaviour Network Seminars, please visit the Manchester Informatics website.

    If you have any questions regarding this event, please contact


    gravatar Bryony C Quick

    gravatar Jim Miles
Generated: Friday, 10 April 2020 11:07:51
Last change: Tuesday, 03 November 2015 08:31:25