1. Oxford Links
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Oxford University Museum of NaturalHistory - The Oxford University Museum of Natural History web page offers links to the collections, library and staff of the Museum for students, as well as information on access and exhibitions in the public galleries. There are links to each separate collection - entomology, geology, mineralogy & etrology and zoology - with brief historical descriptions, searchable databases, numbers of specimens and names of the key people associated with them, including Darwin, Wallace, Burchell and the Tradescants. Brief information is given about the Oxford Environmental Archaeology Unit which is based within the museum.
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Complex ions : the study of metal ions in solution - This page, part of the Virtual Chemistry Laboratory at Oxford University, provides an interactive experimental introduction to solution chemistry with common metal ions such as copper, silver, cobalt, iron, chromium and vanadium. Experiments provide an examination of mixing various reagents with metal ion solutions, corresponding colour changes and the effect of temperature. Also included are interactive images linked to QuickTime movies of real experiments. Theories and ideas are explored by a quiz with a multiple choice assessment.
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Pericyclic chemistry online resource - An interactive resource on pericyclic chemistry, including: cycloadditions, electrocyclic reactions, sigmatropic rearrangements, and ene reactions. The site is part of "Virtual Chemistry" from the University of Oxford Department of Chemistry. The content of the resource is degree level and is mainly based on third year lectures by Dr J. Robertson. The Macromedia Flash player is required to view this site.
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Laboratory rat : a natural history - 'The laboratory rat: a natural history' is a film shot as a wildlife documentary over several months. The 27 minute film follows the lives of domestic rats after being released in a large outdoor enclosure where they have to compete, like their wild counterparts, for food, shelter and mates. The sequences are available in digital format and the Web site also contains over 40 freely downloadable slides and movie clips (some silent) that span all the major sections of the documentary. The film and web site aim to redress the lack of useful material available to illustrate the teaching of behavioural studies. Made available on the Web by Manuel Berdoy, University of Oxford.
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Virtual chemistry - Based at Oxford University, the Virtual Reality Group is "developing a three-dimensional simulated laboratory for the teaching of chemistry". Written extensively in VRML, the site provides a fluid experience of a virtual chemistry laboratory, where users can watch experiments, take tours of the laboratory, take interactive teaching practicals in a number of topics, view 3D molecules and download applications for handheld computers. To view all the features, users require QuickTime, Chemscape's CHIME plug-in and Shockwave. Virtual chemistry is created, designed and maintained by final year MChem research students in the Department of Chemistry.
1.6. Podcasts: available at http://podcasts.ox.ac.uk/
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Darwin 200 Podcasts - celebrating 200 years since Charles Darwin was born.
Caging Schrödinger's Cat - Quantum Nanotechnology - Weird new possibilities emerge as we explore the nanoworld, the universe at the length scale of a billionth of a metre. Here the theory of quantum mechanics bewilders our everyday common sense, as Erwin Schrödinger famously expressed when he imagined a cat that was both dead and alive at the same time! Now Dr Simon Benjamin shows us how experts in physics, chemistry and materials science are working together to harness this strange reality.
2. National Links
2.2. HEA Subject Centre Blogs
Information & Computer Science
Higher education institutions across the UK are today, 7 October 2011, invited to partner with the HEA through its upcoming workshop and seminar series.
Participating institutions will each receive a grant of £500 to host and deliver a workshop or seminar promoting research and evidence that has informed departmental and institutional policy and/or practice.
Applicants can submit a proposal to host an event on the theme of assessment and feedback or retention and success, or on learning and teaching in a discipline context.
The closing date for thematic submissions is 3 November 2011, while the discipline call will be ongoing throughout the year.
This new UK-wide initiative for 2011-12 builds upon similar recent HEA schemes in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. The purpose of this fund is to help staff and students engage in activities (e.g. events, and meetings). The HEA is committed to sustainability and increased efficiency in the delivery of its services and has started to run some virtual events e.g. through the use of Elluminate, however, the technological infrastructure is still in its infancy and feedback from the sector suggests that face to face contact is still the preferred mode of engagement.
A call for papers has been issued for the Third International Conference on Computational Creativity. Paper submissions are due January 16, 2012, demo submissions are due April 12, 2012, and the conference will be May 30 - June 1, 2012 in Dublin, Ireland.