Birds-eye view of people drinking coffee around a table with laptop and tablet used to represent ecoffee at SGH.

In person, eCoffee@SGH provided opportunities not only for peer learning and support with TEL tools and techniques but also for forging connections.  Since we’ve been meeting online, that opportunity has felt just as important – if not more so.  Sharing good practice and addressing common issues has helped counteract the isolation of working remotely, as well as providing inspiration, solutions to challenges, and contacts that extend that support beyond the session itself.  We’ve been delighted to welcome lots of new attendees and being able to ‘meet’ new colleagues and extend the community online.

Averaging 22 attendees each session, the past academic year offered eight eCoffees covering a range of requested themes. Further details and links to the recordings are below. Dates for 2021-22‘s sessions can all be found at

2020-21 sessions

Student-centred Blackboard

We explored what helps make a student-centred Blackboard site, with students and staff sharing suggestions for shaping and supporting each learner’s journey through the course. Access the recording of Student-centred Blackboard.

Teams with external users

Colin Barnett led a session filled with nuggets of wisdom for those facing a common challenge: how do you provide the best experience for external users on Teams? Some of the key advice is summarised on the page here, that can be shared with external colleagues: How do I join a Teams meeting as an external guest? Access the recording of Teams with external users.

More Teams tips

Following on from the previous session, this session highlighted new features and invited attendees to share their own Teams tips. This included David Johnston demonstrating how using OBS with Teams supports online tuition in operating complex microscopes, setting up multiple cameras to easily integrate different views and inputs. Access the recording of More Teams tips.

Tracking online engagement

Including case studies from Prof David Read and Prof Judith Holloway, this session focused on some of the key questions raised by online learning: Are students there? Are they engaged? Have they accessed the content? Have they understood? As well as exploring how to access usage statistics for content shared online, we also considered ways to monitor engagement at a deeper level.  Access the recording of Tracking online engagement.

Options for online events

With many of us facing online meeting overload, what other options are there for online events?  Dr Caroline Childs shared her experience of running a successful Twitter event online. Access the recording of Options for online events.

Blends of Office 365 apps

In this session, we considered ways that different Office 365 tools can work together to improve and expand functionality, increase efficiency and offer new possibilities for activities. Some examples are shared below. Access the recording of Blends of Office 365 apps.

Engaging an audience on social media

Dr Nisreen Alwan led an inspiring and insightful session, sharing her experiences of building an authentic, engaging presence on social media, and powerfully using Twitter to raise awareness and stimulate discussion. Access the recording of Engaging an audience on social media.

Introducing Blackboard Ally

In our final session of the academic year, Matthew Deeprose introduced Ally. This tool enables students to access a range of alternative formats for Blackboard content, and supports staff in making their content accessible for all learners. To find out more, view the slides accompanying the session, along with the recording of Introducing Blackboard Ally.

A year of eCoffees

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