CAN conference 2019: The Evolving Landscape of Staff-Student Partnership, 29–30 May 2019

logos for Jisc, OU students association and The Open University

The Open University is proud to be hosting the Change agents’ network Conference 2019 in partnership with Jisc and we would like to announce the call for contributions from colleges and universities who are working in partnership with their students.

In 2019 the CAN Conference will focus on the evolving landscape of staff-student partnerships at universities and colleges. With CAN in its 8th year, and host institution The Open University in its 50th year, our five key themes offer participants the opportunity to critically reflect on our collective progress to date, and to begin to envision the future of staff-student partnership in a rapidly changing education sector.

Conference themes

1. Informed Innovation: Working with Students
How does innovation in education embrace and develop consistent, long-term engagement with students as partners? Innovation in education covers a broad field, from learning and teaching technologies and practices, to ways of working. An evidence-based approach to innovation promotes not only the successful implementation of ideas, but also welcomes discussion of pilots, experiments, and prototypes. Informed innovation relies on learning from experience, and this theme provides a ‘failure amnesty’ to share ultimately unsuccessful efforts. This theme invites submissions that critically reflect on the experience of innovating in education, and how this has evolved through partnership between staff and students.

2. Partnerships in Curriculum Innovation/Design
How do ongoing partnerships with students in curriculum innovation and curriculum design contribute to the development of modern and relevant learning and teaching content, materials, and practices? Submissions on this theme are welcome to explore this broad and varied area, which encompasses experiences in co-production, co-creation, consultation, engagement, student success, and the affordances of digital technologies across these.

3. Engaging Students in Change
At this time of intensive change and uncertainty, in our society and in our institutions, this theme seeks to explore the opportunities and challenges of engaging students in change. How can staff and students be open and empathetic partners in sustainable change? How can difficult conversations and decisions be negotiated from all areas? In their submissions, staff and students are encouraged to share their strategies and experiences for engaging students in change.

4. Landscape of Student Voice
Over the eight years the CAN conference has been running, the student voice landscape has evolved and changed significantly. This theme offers an opportunity for submissions that reflect on this evolution, and institutions’ experiences of bringing staff-student partnerships to life. How will this landscape continue to change and develop? What are some of the key responsibilities and expectations of these partnerships, looking to the future? What are the implications of this for our sectors and for our students?

5. Positioning Ourselves for Future Success
This theme is future-focussed, inviting submissions on how both institutions and students can position themselves for success. As staff, how are we engaging our students in preparing for their future success? As students, how does your partnership and engagement with staff and institutions influence strategic thinking and institutional success? Are broader sector priorities and student priorities shared?

6. Engaging a Diverse Student Body
This important theme welcomes submissions about how we engage with an increasingly diverse student body, and ensure our staff-student partnerships are fully inclusive, so that all students have the opportunity to make their voices heard. Submissions for this theme are encouraged to include examples and best practice around engagement strategies, widening participation, policies, the use of digital technologies, and experiences we can share to improve access to partnership for students.

Proposal formats
We welcome contributions from staff and students for the following type of sessions:

Presentation
Presentations should be no more than 20 minutes long and will be followed with 10 minutes for questions.

Workshop
Workshops should be no more than 45 minutes long and include a collaborative activity with time for discussion and questions.

Poster
Posters should be no more than A0 Portrait Size and will require the designer to prepare a 5 minute presentation to showcase their poster in addition to answering questions.

Demonstration
An interactive opportunity to showcase a project, activity or work, you must prepare a 5 minute presentation to showcase your demonstration in addition to answering questions. 

To make your submission, please complete the linked proposal form by 21 January 2019:
CAN Conference 2019 Proposal Form

Once your submission has been confirmed, you will need to secure your ticket for the event. Early Bird registration will open in February 2019.

If you have any queries please email The Open University CAN Conference team (CAN-Conference-2019@open.ac.uk)

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