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18 January 2013 | Issue 595

To view previous editions see LU Text Archive
See the Press Office news and events pages here



Vice-Chancellor appointed in new HEFC role

The Vice-Chancellor Professor Mark E. Smith has been appointed to the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales (HEFCW). The Minister for Education and Skills Leighton Andrews has announced the appointment of three new members this week - Professor Smith, Mr Ewart Wooldridge and Professor Stephen Tomlinson. The Council is responsible for the funding of all higher education institutions in Wales and has a budget of £366 million for 2012-13.

Centre for Corpus Approaches to Social Science

A new £3.5m research hub at Lancaster University will study the use and manipulation of language in society. Funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), the new Centre for Corpus Approaches to Social Science (CASS) will bring the latest techniques in linguistic analysis to bear on a range of questions in the social sciences. Corpus linguistics is an approach to the study of language that uses computers to permit the analysis of millions of words of data to look for patterns of usage that are not noticeable otherwise. Researchers at Lancaster have been producing pioneering research in this area for over 40 years. Full story.

NatWest branch closure

Further to the decision by the NatWest Bank to close its campus branch on 25 March 2013, the University has been looking at the available options. We have now gone out to tender for a new provider of banking services, with a requirement for a campus branch. We expect an interim period from the date of closure to any new arrangements being confirmed. Arrangements are being made by NatWest to allow us to use the Barclays branch for counter services after the 26 March. Further guidance will be issued by the Finance Division in due course. The Finance Division is working with all areas affected by the change. If you have any queries, please contact Tina Bleasdale (Team Leader for cashiers), 92078, or Peter Fielding, Deputy Director of Finance, 94161.


Rebecca Braun (German) has been awarded an AHRC Early Career Fellowship for over £170 000 for her major interdisciplinary project ‘The Author and the World: New Interdisciplinary Approaches to Authorship’ which is set to run from 2014-1016. The award will allow Rebecca to finish her monograph on German authors and the media and set up an interdisciplinary research hub on authorship that is to be located in the University’s Centre for Transcultural Writing and Research.

Dr Patrick Stacey (LUMS) is to run a nationwide survey looking at the "creative well-being" of computer game developers in association with TIGA, which represents the UK games industry. This builds on his previous research on the same topic in Singapore . Lancaster University is now affiliated to TIGA, which provides several benefits including open access to game development resources and careers information.

Dr George Aggidis, Director of Lancaster University Renewable Energy Group (Engineering) and Fellow of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, co-authored the report Global Food – Waste Not, Want Not. The report, produced by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Energy and Environment group, received widespread media coverage from the Wall Street Journal to the BBC.

Dr Lucy Easthope who was recently awarded her PhD (Div of Medicine and Dept of Sociology) has been called in by Newcastle City Council to review its response to last summer's flooding in the North East. Families from a Newburn estate who were evacuated from their homes will take part this weekend in debriefings with Dr Easthope, an expert in the care of survivors.

Rev Mark Wakelin President of the Methodist Church visited the Chaplaincy Centre on Thursday. He met with a number of staff and students and discussed issues of faith, science, poverty and inequality in society and how the church seeks to engage in the political arena in the local community, nationally and globally.

The University’s Spectrum Centre for Mental Health Research is running a study in the North West called the ‘Integrated Bipolar Parenting Intervention’ (IBPI) which involves participants receiving an online parenting support program combined with specific self-management strategies for bipolar disorder. Our pilot study showed significant improvements in both child behaviour and parenting skills following a similar online intervention. If you have a child between the ages of 3 – 10 years and are interested in participating in this research then please take a look at our website, or contact Beverley Clack, 01524 594935, for more information.

See here for the Lent Term Colleges’ Newsletter

Lancaster in the news

An interview with Professor Martin Conyon (LUMS) on BBC Radio 4 'Analysis', about executive pay, can be heard on Monday 21 January at 8.30pm.

To see other news items featuring colleagues follow the link


Equality and Diversity news

The University has embarked on a process of undertaking Equality Analysis as an integral part of the development and review of all new and existing policies and practices. The purpose of Equality Analysis is to assess the impact of our policies and practices on students, staff, and others in order to eliminate discrimination and advance equality.

Equality Analysis Workshops are scheduled for the following dates in 2013: 29 January; 13 February; 18 March; 26 April. These workshops are available to anyone who is involved in undertaking Equality Analysis. Booking is essential. See here for further information. Also, to help raise awareness, and to celebrate the diversity of our staff and student population, a new Diversity Calendar 2013 is now available as link from the following webpage

Deadline for nominations for the 2013 Staff Awards

The deadline for nominations for the 2013 Staff Awards is soon – Thursday 24 January 2013. Staff and students wishing to nominate staff for the Pilkington Teaching Award or the Outstanding Contribution Award can download nomination forms from the HR website. Nominations should be sent or emailed to Nick Thoume in Human Resources (ext. 10614).

Flexible Benefits – survey for new benefits

Human Resources are conducting a survey to canvass staff opinion on the current Flexible Benefits package and to explore the level of interest in new, additional benefits. This will help to inform the new Flexible Benefits year, October 2013 - September 2014. To help shape the future of Flexible Benefits, please visit here.

Policy on communicating with parents of students

A new policy on communicating with parents has been developed for staff. It can be found here. It is important that everyone who might come in contact with parents of students can refer to the policy should they be asked by a parent to give information about performance, welfare, attendance, etc. It explains that staff should not communicate with the parents of students directly except in particular circumstances.

iLancaster developments

In continuing response to feedback, the iLancaster team has made further developments and improvements to the University’s mobile app. These are:

  • LUFix – report a fault around campus, and track progress of fault you’ve reported.
  • Emergency – important emergency contact information, available from the home screen.
  • Bus Timetable – improvements which speed up delivery of bus times information.

iLancaster is available for iPhone, Android and BlackBerry, and there’s a web-based version if you can’t use the native app on your mobile device. Further information available here.

Lecture Capture Project

During the Michaelmas term, ISS started a pilot project to capture lecture content. A total of over 250 lectures across 12 venues and 27 courses was captured. The content is, once approved by the lecturer, made available to students via the university VLE. Feedback from participating staff and students has been positive and we would therefore like to extend the trial during the Lent term.

If you are interested and require more information, please follow this link.

Furness fountain refurbishment

The Furness fountain and adjoining planter are being emptied and refurbished to restore them to their former glory. Work will start on Monday 21st January. There may be some noise created by the work, but this is not expected to create any disturbance. If you have any queries about the work please contact the Facilities helpdesk on 01524 593333.


‘Diggles’ on campus is currently closed. It is anticipated that shop will reopen at some point in the next few weeks.

Sports news

Additional car parking behind the Sports Centre

For customers who are not already aware additional car parking is now available to the rear, as well as to the front, of the Centre. Customers are asked to make use of the new parking, particularly during busy times. The same car parking policy applies to the parking at the rear of the Centre. For more information visit

New climbing social night

If you’re a climber, but you’re struggling to find a climbing partner, come down to the new climbing social night on a Wednesday evenings. Just pick up a free wristband from reception to show your interest to other climbers. Then have a climb, and say hello! For more information on climbing at the Sports Centre visit

New family climb time session

The climbing wall is also now running a brand new ‘Family Climb Time’ session. Bring along your children and you can climb with our experienced, fully qualified instructors. Children must be accompanied by their parents or an adult. Ask at reception for available slots in the late afternoon, or at the weekend.

Bouldering League

The Sports Centre’s Bouldering League is continuing throughout January. There are 25 new routes featuring interesting and fun low-mid grade problems, as well as some harder routes. To take part purchase a scorecard from the Sports Centre reception for £2. You must be a registered climber to climb unsupervised. So if you’ve never done it but fancy a go, sign up for Beginners session. For more information, or to book a place on a course or climbing session, ring the Sports Centre reception on (01524) 5-10600 to book on, or visit for more information.

Sports Courses this January

There are four places left on the Netball Beginner Umpire Course running on the 20 January at the Sports Centre, in association with Netball England. There are still places left on the NGB First Aid Course, run in partnership with Lancashire Sport and LUSU, which is taking place on the 31st January. To book on call Lancashire Football Association on 01772 624000.

Food & Drink on Campus

The Venue’s New Deli Bar

A new Deli Bar is now available in The Venue where you can choose from a selection of cold meats, quiches or cheese and salad items to eat in or boxed up and taken away. The Deli is available from Midday onwards, priced from £3.95.

The Venue’s new Breakfast Menu

Choose a bagel or floured bap and any of the following five items: Plumgarth’s Sausage / Vegetarian Sausages / Giant Flat Mushrooms / Bacon / Fried Egg 2 items £2.25 3 items £2.50 For more information on food and drink on campus visit

The Lounge – New evening opening times

In addition to its usual opening hours Mon – Fri 9.30am – 4pm (serving food from 12noon-2pm) from Tuesday 15 January, The Lounge Restaurant in County South is also serving food from 5pm-9pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays. The first 20 people to reserve their place can also take advantage of a special discount – 2 courses for just £6.95 and 3 courses for £8.95 including tea or coffee. The menu can also be viewed here. Places can be booked by visiting The Lounge or calling 93260 or emailing. If you don’t have time to book in advance you are also welcome but tables will be allocated on a first come first served basis.

Curry night at The Herdwick (Graduate College Bar)

Weekly curry night each Friday during term time, served from 5pm to 8pm. A curry and a pint is only £5.49 or with a soft drink only £3.99.

Special Offer at the Winning Post at Cartmel College

Thursday evenings during January and February from 5pm – 8pm you can choose from a selection of main dishes for just £5.95 including a drink from the bar. Details can be viewed here and are limited to 20 people. Places can be booked by visiting The Winning Post or emailing

I Love Pie – New Loyalty Card for The Trough of Bowland

For all those who love pie, The Trough of Bowland bar now has an exclusive ‘I Love Pie’ loyalty card, buy 6 pies and get the 7th pie free. Pick up a loyalty card when you next visit and if you want to plan ahead, the menu can be viewed here.

The Mill at Fylde College launches new ‘Morning Grazers’ Menu

The Mill is now open from 10am serving a new ‘Mid-Morning Grazers’ menu including toasted tea cakes, crumpets and pikelets. There are other new additions to the menu including Midday Munchies & Fylde Fodder! To view the menu and extended serving times click here.

Training & Courses

Short courses in Applied Statistics for scientists, social scientists and health researchers

Courses running in the lent and summer terms are as follows:

  • 23-24 January - Duration (Survival) Analysis
  • 15 February - Atlas.Ti
  • 21-22 February - Data Mining Techniques
  • 28 Feb-1 March - Using STATA
  • 4-5 March - Introduction to Bayesian Methods
  • 7-8 March - Statistical Modelling using SPSS (SPSS II)
  • 18-19 March - Quantifying and Evaluating Forensic Evidence
  • 21-22 March - Structural Equation Modelling
  • 24-25 April - Multi-level Models
  • 1-2 May - Methods for Missing Data
  • 15-16 May - Quantitative Criminology including latent class analysis

To book a place and to see course descriptions please see here. Contact Angela Mercer for any queries.

Staff IT training

Next week’s free IT training sessions run by ISS. All training sessions take place in the Library Training suites and require booking online, unless otherwise stated.

More information is available on the ISS Staff IT Training pages.

Organisation and Educational Development

Please find below information on a number of Teaching and Learning Forums. Follow the links to find out more about the courses.

Please find below a list of upcoming staff development opportunities. For more opportunities please visit the OED Website or email us directly.

What's On

For a full list of all events, please see Events.

Forthcoming Live at LICA events


    Forsyth & Pollard 25 January - 22 March.

    Free public exhibition launch at 6.30pm Thursday 24 January in the Peter Scott Gallery (all welcome). The launch will be followed by a music performance in the Great Hall by the Chroma Ensemble.
    Free artists talk - at 1pm-2pm on Thursday 24 January in the Nuffield Theatre (no booking required).

    In residence 25 January - 22 March.

    Free opening event, 6.30pm, 24 January


    Chroma Ensemble Thursday 24 January at 7:30pm

Language courses for staff and students on campus

Lancashire Adult Learning (Lancashire County Council's education service), in association with Lancaster University, are offering language courses on campus starting week commencing 28 January. Courses include Intermediate French, German and Spanish, and Beginners Japanese and Russian. All courses are 6 weeks long. The fee is £66.00 (£75.60 for non EU residents). Concessions are available on all these courses for those in receipt of certain income-related benefits. You must be aged 19 yrs or over to take part. Come along to our advice and enrolment event on Tuesday 22 January, 1 – 3pm - ground floor reception area of FASS (North Spine)


All adverts posted by staff.