Monthly Archives: August 2017

Conception BioProNET

Exhibitions on artists’ books and academic collaboration

Two new exhibitions in the Templeman Library open in August.

Prescriptions: artists’ books explores health and well-being issues through the intimate and complex medium of the artist’s book. It runs from 1 August – 17 November.

Capturing Collaborations is a series of four paintings that visually interpret a project between the School of Biosciences and the University of Manchester. It runs from 2 August – 17 November.

All are welcome to attend the launch event in the Templeman Gallery on Thursday 3 August at 16.15.

Both exhibitions are in the Gallery, Block A, Floor 1 in the Templeman Library.

Image credit: from ‘Conception’ by Keith Robinson

Traditional Japanese Tea Ceremony

A taste of Japan

Join students from Japan, studying English with the Centre for English and World Languages, as they teach calligraphy and origami, perform traditional Japanese dance and host a traditional Japanese tea ceremony.

This is a free event taking place between 17.00 and 18.00 on Wednesday 16 August in Darwin Peter Brown Room, Darwin College. No booking required.

For more information, please email: or phone ext. 4401

Pentalum Luminarium

bOing! preview for staff

Gulbenkian is inviting University of Kent staff to join them on Friday 25 August for a special preview event before bOing! International Family Festival on Saturday 26 and Sunday 27 August.

From 17.00-18.00 on Friday 25 August, Gulbenkian will be running FREE entry for University of Kent staff to Pentalum Luminarium, located on the field between Eliot and Rutherford, on a first-come first-served basis, subject to availability.

From the Guggenheim in Spain to the Sydney Opera House in Australia, the monumental and interactive walk-in sculptures – Luminariums – of Architects of Air and designer Alan Parkinson have astounded audiences across the globe. Enter a dazzling maze of winding paths and soaring domes where Islamic architecture and Gothic cathedrals meld into an inspiring monument to the beauty of light and colour and where visitors of all ages can happily lose themselves.

For more information about bOing! International Family Festival please visit

Volunteer at bOing!
We are looking for volunteers to join us this August on Saturday 26 and Sunday 27 at Gulbenkian for an amazing weekend of the very best in theatre, dance, music, films and fun for all the family, packed with magical performances and experiences. You will gain extraordinary insight into the running of a venue/event. We are committed to helping you develop your skills and your confidence concerning the task of your choice. You will have the opportunity to meet others with a shared passion and we will value your commitment by rewarding you with complimentary tickets to selected shows and films.

For more information about volunteering email Becca Brown on


Congregations 2017

Congratulations to our graduates

More than 4,000 students graduated at degree congregation ceremonies in Canterbury and Rochester between 10 and 18 July.

The ceremonies give staff, guests and friends of the University a chance to come together to celebrate the achievements of the graduating class. Free YouTube live streams of the ceremonies were available for the first time, for guests who couldn’t make it on the day; the streams have been viewed over 35,000 times.

Recipients of honorary degrees include former boxing champion Barry McGuigan MBE, comedians Phill Jupitus and Mark Steel and Kent alumna, Lisa Madigan, the senior-most female Attorney General in the US.

Our former Vice-Chancellor and President, Professor Dame Julia Goodfellow, attended her last ceremony in Canterbury on Friday 14 July. In celebration of her time at Kent, students and staff attempted to break the Guinness World Record for the most mortar boards thrown simultaneously.

Special thanks goes to the Congregations team, Development Office staff, Campus Security and all the volunteers from across the University who make the ceremonies special for graduates and their guests.

Volunteers play a critical role and the team is grateful to everyone who gets involved. Stay tuned during the autumn term for a call for volunteers for the November ceremonies.

University of Kent's Canterbury campus

Canterbury campus Masterplan

Following the publication of a Concept Masterplan in 2016, the University of Kent is preparing a Framework Masterplan for the Canterbury campus in line with Policy EMP7 of the Local District Plan.

The first step in this process is to prepare an overall spatial vision of what sort of place the Canterbury campus should be and the strategies for delivering it.

A Discussion Document has been produced to enable a range of stakeholders to engage with our emerging strategies for ‘Planning and Environment’, ‘Place-making’, ‘Landscape and Biodiversity’ and ‘Movement and Transport’, together with the draft overall spatial vision.

These strategies and vision will guide the further development of the Framework Masterplan and are underpinned by research studies already underway.

A number of external stakeholder groups were invited to a workshop day to discuss the emerging strategies and you can find a report of that workshop online.

If, having read the Discussion Document and Workshop Report, you would like to be part of a staff focus group later in the summer, please email

Possible phone disruptions – 17 & 18 August

Thursday 17 August is A level results day. The volume of calls from potential students is expected to be exceptionally high. This may cause intermittent problems when ringing from the University on Thursday 17 and Friday 18 August. The switchboard is also likely to be very busy with related enquiries during the following week (21 – 25 August).

We appreciate your patience and co-operation during this time.

If you have any queries regarding this, please contact the Estates Helpdesk on ext 3209.

Mobile research laboratory

Tracking social communication skills

Currently, researchers in the School of Psychology are studying how social communication skills change as we age and how we may be able to enhance them. This is a significant research project and the team is looking for adults aged between 18 and 80 years old to take part in the study. This will involve a variety of questionnaires and computer tasks.

Sessions can take place at any time of day, evenings, weekdays or weekends and can be carried out at your home or place of work if preferred. As a thank you, you’ll receive £30 cash, a small gift and reasonable travel expenses.

Email or visit the website for more details.


Participants needed for PhD research

You are invited to take part in a PhD study involving non-invasive electronic measurement of swallowing and chewing. This study intends to collect data towards the development of automated identification of chewing and swallowing behaviours.

To do this we intend to measure muscle activity in the neck and face during a small meal. The session is expected to take no more than 90 minutes. You will be presented with £10 Amazon voucher to compensate you for your time.

If you are interested in taking part in this study, please register your interest in the following form:

We are looking for individuals between 18 and 40 years of age who live in the Canterbury area, or are students or staff members at the University of Kent, to take part in data collection during a small meal. The study is open to individuals with no known allergies or dietary restrictions to food items listed below (specifically gluten and dairy products).

If you are eligible to take part in this study you will be required to visit Jennison Building at the Canterbury campus during which small sensors will be placed to your throat and face. You will be asked to perform a number of tasks (including reading aloud and carrying out head motion), and then to consume a meal. This will consist of: apple, plain cheese pizza, jam sandwich, yoghurt and water. Food provided will contain gluten and dairy products.


Photo credit: Paul Wilkinson, CC 2.0

Smartlife Team

School of Sport and Exercise Science helping to develop new technology

Smartlife Inc, a Manchester based SME, has been awarded funding to embark on a Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) project with The School of Sport and Exercise Sciences (SSES) at the University of Kent.

Smartlife are specialists in smart garment technology. The company was founded in 2010 and has developed innovative textile sensors, electronics and firmware capable of detecting the body’s biophysical signals delivering actionable insight to users via mobile apps.

Dr John Dickinson and Dr Sam Winter, from SSES, are looking forward to working with Smartlife, and with the soon-to- be appointed postgraduate, who will deliver the project. The two-year project, part-funded by Innovate UK, will enable Smartlife to create innovative wearable technology to identify healthy and pathological respiratory patterns. This unique functionality will grow not only their sports and fitness market share but facilitate expansion into new markets such as the health and wellbeing, medical and military markets.

Martin Ashby, CEO of Smartlife, said “we’re delighted to be working with such a well-respected academic institution and believe that our partnership will allow Smartlife to deliver insight to our customers that is at the cutting edge of current thinking on respiration”.

KTPs are a UK-wide Government programme helping businesses to improve their competitiveness and productivity through better use of knowledge, technology and skills that reside within the UK academic knowledge base.

Picture: Senior Management team at Smartlife Inc: Mark Pedley, Founder; Clare Simpson, Product Development Director; Martin Ashby, CEO.

Staff briefing

Pilot changes to programme and module approval processes

From 1 September the University will be piloting changes to the Programme and Module approval processes.

The changes have been developed in partnership with key stakeholders and have been informed by consultation with representatives from across the University. The key changes are as follows:
– An enhanced business case stage, with support from central services, to help us be more confident of any new programmes we launch.
– A reduction in QA stages from three to two for new programmes, with programme leads present at PASC to help the process run more smoothly.
– An annual approval cycle which is easy to understand.

A full review of the pilot will be carried out in May 2018.

This staff guide explains the changes further.

In addition the pilot changes will be explained at two staff briefings in September.
– Tuesday 12 September, 14.00 – 16.00 – Medway (M1-22)

– Wednesday 20 September, 14.00 – 16.00 – Canterbury (GLT2)

To help with planning, please complete this Doodle Poll to indicate your intention to attend either briefing.

The pilot is being introduced as part of Simplifying Kent Project 1: Programme Approval and Curriculum Design, sponsored by Professor April McMahon, Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Education and led by Dr Simon Kirchin, Dean of Humanities.

A second strand of the project is also underway. Throughout the spring and summer terms health checks have been carried out with schools and centres, looking at the University’s module and programme portfolio.

There are nine Simplifying Kent Projects in total, you can find out more about the projects on the Simplifying Kent SharePoint site.