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Communities of Learning

Park Plaza Hotel, Leeds
6 May 2010 09:00 - 7 May 2010 17:45

This year the SEDA Conference will explore and debate the issues around communities of learning. In doing so it will touch upon some key topics in staff and educational development and learning and teaching with regard to the need to nurture communities, reflection on existing communities and how to respond in an ever changing world to the multifarious demands on academics in HE and FE. What is the nature of the communities that we are wishing to create and support? What are the tensions inherent in fostering such communities? What is the nature of existing communities? How can we engage different communities?

Conference Themes

  • Building communities through teaching, learning and assessment
  • Building communities through scholarship and research
  • Reaching outside the university
  • Supporting the student experience through communities of learning
  • Sharing community stories
  • Understanding communities of learning in higher education
  • How to manage conflicting communities of learning

Keynote Addresses

This year there will be three keynote addresses delivered by Etienne Wenger, Aaron Porter and James Wisdom.

Etienne Wenger is a globally-recognised thought leader in the field of communities of practice and their application to organisations. His keynote address is entitled: Learning in landscapes of practice: knowlegeability and identity. He will also present a summary at the end of the first day entitled: It's been a hard day's night: an interactive reflection.

Aaron Porter, Vice President (Higher Education) National Union of Students. His keynote address is entitled: The Importance of the Learner Voice in 21st Century Higher Education - Promoting an Academic Community.

Professor James Wisdom, Independent Consultant. His keynote address is entitled: Politicians, civil servants, vice chancellors, lecturers and students: implications of 'boundary encounters' for educational developers.

The SEDA Conference Experience

SEDA prides itself on creating a relaxed, welcoming and positive atmosphere at conferences, which encourages open, constructive and supportive sharing of ideas, experience and practice.  Feedback from participants at recent SEDA conferences:
“Every session I attended was enjoyable and interesting. I learned a lot from facilitators and participants"
“A very enjoyable conference. As a first timer to SEDA I found it to be an environment that positively encouraged discussion and sharing of views and ideas at all levels"
"Great opportunity to network and keep up to date with current issues"


The conference will be of particular interest to all those involved in promoting communities of learning in HE and FE learning, teaching and development. This includes:

  • Educational and staff developers
  • Lecturers and teachers in further and higher education
  • National and institutional teaching fellows
  • Centre for Excellence staff
  • Managers of academic departments
  • Educational technologists
  • Quality assurance and enhancement policy makers



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