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Planet SOSIG

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Debra Hiom highlights some new events, publications and services in the social sciences and Andy Hargrave introduces recent developments for FE in the Bized Service.

Developments in Economics and Business Education Conference (DEBE)

The DEBE conference, held jointly by Economics LTSN and Bized, will take place on September 15-16 2003 in Edinburgh. The conference will comprise a mix of papers, workshops and poster sessions around the themes of

  • Curriculum and context
  • Assessment and monitoring
  • Classroom practice and student engagement
  • Case studies, role-playing and simulations
  • Learning approaches
  • Information and Communications Technology (ICT)
  • Interdisciplinary studies

Online registration for the conference is available.

New Journal for Learning and Teaching in the Social Sciences

LATISS (Learning and Teaching in the Social Sciences) is a new refereed journal that aims to use the disciplines of sociology, anthropology, politics, international relations and social policy to reflect critically on learning and teaching practices in higher education and to analyse their relationship to changes in higher education policies and institutions.

The research field of Learning and Teaching in the Social Sciences will include:

  • all aspects of learning and teaching and higher education reform from national and comparative perspectives
  • evidence-based developments in curriculum, assessment, learning and teaching methods
  • analyses of impacts of institutional and national policies on learning and teaching - e.g. widening access, employability, audit, quality enhancement

Each volume will have some articles on a common theme. The overall theme for 2004 is Changing Landscapes of Higher Education.

There is a journal Web site.

New Economic and Social Data Service Launched

The new Economic and Social Data Service (ESDS) was launched in London on the 30 June. ESDS provides researchers, teachers and data support staff with access to a very broad range of economic and social data across a wide variety of themes, and includes access to international and national datasets such the General Household Survey and the Labour Force Survey. It brings together the following centres of expertise in data creation, preservation and use:

  • UK Data Archive
  • Institute for Social and Economic Research
  • Manchester Information and Associated Services
  • Cathie Marsh Centre for Census and Survey Research

See Economic and Social Data Service.

Beyond the Headlines

A pioneering, free Internet service that allows users to look beyond today's media headline and find academic research relevant to the story is now available. Called 'In the News'; the new service can be found on Regard, an online database containing information on social science research funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC).

Regard 'In the News' has already covered issues such as congestion charging, children and nutrition, pensions and policing. It contains over 7,500 research projects, dating back to the mid-1980's, on every subject from Alzheimer's to Enterprise Zones and is updated daily to include the most current research. An archive of the news stories exists enabling you to go back to stories that hit the headlines weeks or months ago, and see what ESRC research relates to them.

'In the News' can be accessed from Regard's home page. Clicking on the headline link from the news archive shows the most relevant research.

Biz/ed Built for FE?

This summer sees the completion of 'Building Biz/ed for FE', a JISC-funded project aimed at boosting the relevance, structure and accessibility of our service to the FE community. There were several strands to this project, including:

  • The site re-design, completed in October 2002
  • Setting up an FE Focus Group to advise on improving the service still further
  • Enhanced relevance through re-purposing existing content
  • Developing an AVCE (Advanced Vocational Certificate of Education) support section, with advice and resources developed by FE practitioners for teachers and learners of business, leisure and recreation and travel and tourism

Regular Biz/ed users will already be familiar with our new site. The introduction of highly detailed tagging to each page of Biz/ed, allows 'mass customisation' of the service to the individual needs of our users. Our 'Quickjump' box is the most visible outcome of this work and can be accessed from our home page.

Our FE Focus Group was set up in 2002, meeting over the course of the year to advise on maximising the relevance of what we do for FE teachers and learners. The group brainstormed ideas for worksheets to be put into a set of new resources giving AVCE guidance to students and lecturers.

Group members were then commissioned to create some of these new resources. Among the materials created are:

  • Tips for dealing with Unit tests
  • A company research checklist
  • A guide to Unit-specific Web sites
  • How to cross-reference between Units

The materials address parts of the Leisure and Recreation, Travel and Tourism and Business curriculum and will be appearing live on Biz/ed this summer.

See the page Building Biz/ed for Further Education (FE).

Company Profiles and Data

In March 2003 Biz/ed launched an interactive data service allowing students to access financial data from a range of UK and International companies. The data are supported by a comprehensive suite of learning materials aimed at developing skills in financial ratio analysis

Learners' skills can be honed by accessing information from the profit and loss accounts and balance sheets of 34 well-known business organisations. At present, two full years of data have been gathered, allowing comparisons to be made within the firm, across their industry and over the economy as a whole.

The objective of this service is to leaven the learning experience in a traditionally inaccessible area of the business syllabus. Biz/ed are pleased to be able to enhance this resource with profiles of some of the 34 companies on which we have gathered financial data.

Featured companies include : easyJet, Sainsbury's, Carphone Warehouse and Domino's Pizza.

We expect this useful resource to grow as more business profiles are added and the financial data are updated.

See the Financial Data Request Form.

Author Details

Debra Hiom
SOSIG Co-Director
ILRT
8-10 Berkeley Square
Bristol BS8 1HH

Email: d.hiom@bristol.ac.uk
Web site: http://www.sosig.ac.uk/
Tel: 0117 928 7117
Fax: 0117 928 7112

Andy Hargrave
Bized
ILRT
8-10 Berkeley Square
Bristol BS8 1HH

Email: bized-info@bized.ac.uk
Web site: http://www.bized.ac.uk/
Tel: 0117 928 7124
Fax: 0117 928 7112

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Article Title: "Planet SOSIG"
Author: Debra Hiom and Andy Hargrave
Publication Date: 30-July-2003
Publication: Ariadne Issue 36
Originating URL: http://www.ariadne.ac.uk/issue36/planet-sosig/

Date published: 
30 July 2003

This article has been published under copyright; please see our access terms and copyright guidance regarding use of content from this article. See also our explanations of how to cite Ariadne articles for examples of bibliographic format.

How to cite this article

Debra Hiom. "Planet SOSIG". July 2003, Ariadne Issue 36 http://www.ariadne.ac.uk/issue36/planet-sosig/


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