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NET2021 Conference

NET is the leading, international conference for networking in healthcare education. Over the years, NET’s networking opportunities have spawned both national and international collaborations in research and education developments.

NET provides a unique opportunity for delegates to engage with the latest worldwide research evidence, developments and thinking with educators, practitioners and students. Papers are arranged in themed sessions where delegates participate in in-depth discussion and debate on a topic, facilitated by skilled convenors.

Join the conversation at #NETConf21

Date: 1-3 September 2021
Venue: Virtual 
Who: Healthcare education professionals

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Delegate feedback

Networking is at the heart of this well-established conference, providing a supportive environment for all delegates, and particularly for students, those from overseas, and new presenters.

In the words of 2019 delegates, NET is ‘such an inclusive, collegial and welcoming conference’; ‘there was an air of positivity and joy’; ‘a celebration of the work people are doing across the country and internationally’; ‘remaining in the same theme session was helpful to building dialogue and understanding’; and ‘it’s a vibrant event with a good buzz about it’.

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A fully digital conferencing experience

The NET2021 was hosted on Advance HE's virtual conferencing platform. It was been re-designed as an immersive and engaging digital experience offering delegates the following features:

  • A full day of live-streamed sessions of keynotes, themed sessions and symposia addressing current issues in health education
  • ‘In conversation’ sessions with sector leaders
  • Opportunity to interact and network with other delegates from around the world in our virtual networking space
  • virtual poster exhibition with live chat facilities so that delegates could engage with the presenters
  • resources area where delegates could discover the latest reports and publications
  • Full online support throughout the day

Find out more about our digital conferences below

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Virtual networking Topia world

This year we enhanced the virtual networking during the NET2021 Conference by running a Topia world alongside the virtual conference platform. This replicated the informal side of a face-to-face conference; the chance conversations over a coffee or sandwich, the opportunity to ask questions of your workshop presenters or a good catch up with ex-colleagues, old friends and other people passionate about healthcare education.

In Topia delegates could meet up with people by walking their avatar around the world and literally bumping into people. As you move closer to a group, you hear their conversation fading in and their cameras appearing just as you would when you wander around the refreshment or exhibition area of a face-to-face conference. This allowed greater connectivity between delegates in an informal and fun way.

Our Topia world allowed delegates to meet other delegates, visit the area focussing on collaboration, catch up with our conference presenters and question them about their presentations or take some time out and find a corner to catch up with colleagues and friends. The world was open for the duration of the conference 24 hours a day, delegates didn’t need a password to access it. They just had to click on the links within the virtual conference platform, enter their name and get networking!

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Conference themes

NET2021 addressed all areas of healthcare education across all healthcare professions. The conference focussed on the following themes:

Educational enhancement

Including the sub-themes of Humanising healthcare education; Assessing the impact of pre- and post-registration learning on clinical practice; and Partnership working.

With continual change in both education and healthcare practice, we’re all expected to innovate and generate new ideas. This theme provides an excellent opportunity to share initiatives with colleagues that have been designed to enhance any aspect of healthcare education practice, and which have subsequently been implemented and evaluated. Learning from each other in this manner is a brilliant way of exploring and promoting best practice.

We will also look to promote and enhance safe and effective clinical practice. This includes covering initiatives involving clinical staff, University-based staff working with both students and clinical staff, and student-focused activities which support learning and education.

Learning, teaching and assessment strategies

Including the sub-themes of Evidence-based learning, teaching and assessment; Interprofessional learning and working; Education in clinical practice and practice development; and Technology-enhanced learning.

Rapid changes in technology are transforming every aspect of the way we live and work. How are you using technology to enhance students’ learning? What do we know about its effectiveness in education and service development, and its impact on the student experience?

This broad theme covers aspects of learning and teaching within a curriculum life cycle including initiatives around curriculum design, new approaches in teaching and learning methods or tools, feedback on existing or new approaches to assessment and feedback and evaluation methods. The latest ideas and practices will be shared and discussed, including any obstacles and challenges encountered and how these barriers have been tackled.

Key challenges in healthcare education

Including the sub-themes of Global challenges in healthcare education; Developing the future healthcare education workforce; and Social, economic and policy drivers in healthcare education.

The Coronavirus outbreak is a global challenge that demonstrates that healthcare provision is not bound by international borders. This theme provides an opportunity to share how to internationalise your curriculum, how to ensure global knowledge exchange occurs and give examples of innovative programmes developed for non-domicile students. You will have the opportunity to learn from each other in a supportive environment, to highlight any pitfalls and share your successes.

Student experience, engagement and achievement

Including the sub-themes of Inclusivity in healthcare education; Widening participation; Student support and wellbeing; and Retention and success in healthcare education.

The scope for this theme is wide-ranging. We will endeavour to discuss student retention, co-production, joint working between educational and student communities, new and interesting approaches to engaging with the student community to enrich and value the student experience, and much more.

New for 2021: Education in a global pandemic

Including the sub themes of Transforming healthcare curricula for virtual delivery; Managing placements; Future planning; and Technological development.

2020 was a turbulent year for all, but the higher education sector rose to the challenge of transforming curricula for online delivery and maintaining student engagement. Healthcare education, in particular faced incredible challenges, not least student nurses being drawn into frontline NHS support and the race to deliver an effective vaccine to Covid-19. We explored new pedagogies, new technologies and methodologies implemented during the pandemic, and whether these interim measures will actually form best teaching practices as we enter the ‘new normal’ post-pandemic period.
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NET2021 Conference - Conference programme Day 1

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NET2021 Conference - Conference programme Day 2

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NET2021 Conference - Conference programme Day 3

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NET2021 Conference - Conference abstracts Day 1

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NET2021 Conference - Conference abstracts Day 2

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NET2021 Conference - Conference abstracts Day 3

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Keynote speakers

Keynote speaker: Day 1

Professor Emerita Kathie Lasater, EdD, RN, ANEF, FAAN

Kathie Lasater is Professor Emerita from Oregon Health & Science University, on the west coast of the US. She is a pioneer in simulation research, specifically how simulation impacts the development of clinical judgment. One of the outcomes of her research was the Lasater Clinical Judgment Rubric, a widely used assessment tool in simulation and clinical settings. Nearly 14 years after its publication, the rubric has gone global—it has been translated, or is in process of translation, in 17 other languages. Her clinical judgment research extended to new graduates’ transition to practice and, in addition, she has taught students at all academic levels and on most types of programs, including population health.

Find out more about Kathie

Kathie Lasater

Keynote speaker: Day 1

Gregor Henderson

Gregor is an international leader and influencer on mental health with over 30 years experience across a range of Government, public, private, academic and charity sectors. He formally directed Public Health England's work on mental health. 

Gregor has successfully led and delivered large-scale national policies and programmes in mental health and is currently an adviser to a range of organisations and businesses, including several in the digital and start up world.

Find out more about Gregor


Gregor Henderson

Keynote speaker: Day 2

Professor Janusz Janczukowicz MD, PhD, MMedEd

Professor Janusz Janczukowicz MD, PhD, MMedEd is the Chair of the World Health Organisation (WHO) Academy Quality Committee and the European Association for Medical Education (AMEE) Executive Committee member with special responsibility for developing cooperation with all health professions and international organisations. His is the European Institute of Women’s Health Board of Directors member, also working with the Association for Medical Schools in Europe. He is the head of Centre for Medical Education and vice-dean for Development of Education at Medical University of Lodz. 

Find out more about Janusz

Janusz Janczukowicz

Student panel: day 2

'Student Experiences of Healthcare Education during the COVID-19 pandemic'

This panel will feature a broad range of students across a variety of healthcare professions. They will share their experiences, both good and bad, of studying during lockdown and the pandemic.

We will be joined by students from Leeds University, Northumbria University and The University of Central Lancashire, with disciplines including: Physician Associate, Cardiac Physiology, Operating Department Practitioner, Foundation Year Health, Mental Health Nursing, Midwifery and Children’s Nursing.

Jennifer Blears - panelist

Jennifer is about to start her third and final year at the University of Leeds studying Cardiac Physiology. As a mature student, she comes from a marketing background and is looking forward to her new career. She has been working at Leeds General Infirmary over the summer to develop her clinical experience. In her spare time she enjoys many hobbies including riding horses, hiking, wakeboarding and reading books.

Jennifer Blears

Dennie Sebastian - panelist

Dennie is a final year Physician Associate student at the University of Leeds, having relocated here from Bristol, where he completed his previous undergraduate degree in BSc Biomedical Science.

For his final year dissertation, Dennie is looking at reducing A&E admission in Croup patients by managing them entirely in the community via an established virtual ward facility called the “Ambulatory Care Experience”. The ACE initiative has scalability for substantial financial savings in the NHS.

As a graduate Physician Associate, Dennie hopes to work in a secondary care setting and take on additional responsibilities in Quality Improvement as part of a 5-year career plan. He anticipates for more hospitals to incorporate the virtual ward facility to help meet rising demands.

Dennie Sebastian

Cheryl Mee, Mental Health Nursing Student, Chloe Coates, Midwifery student/graduate, Hannah Beard, Adult Nursing student, Leanne Whittaker, ODP student, from Northumbria University will also be joining this panel session

Keynote speaker: Day 3

Professor Laura Serrant OBE

Laura Serrant is Regional Head of Nursing (North East and Yorkshire) at Health Education England and the former Head of Nursing and Professor of Community and Public Health Nursing in the Faculty of Health, Psychology and Social Care at Manchester Metropolitan University, UK. She has frequently found herself as the sole voice representing nurses and minority communities – a position which she’s striven to challenge throughout her career by empowering others to come forward to join her, in a unique call to 'lift as you climb'. Laura has an extensive experience in national and international health policy development with particular specialist input on racial and ethnic inequalities and cultural safety.

Find out more about Laura

Laura Serrant

Keynote speaker: Day 3

Professor Emerita Amanda Kenny

Professor Emerita Amanda Kenny is a nurse and midwife. She led the development of Australia’s largest multidisciplinary rural health school and was the inaugural Violet Marshman Professor of Rural Health. Her research involves extensive partnerships with vulnerable populations. Amanda is a leader in knowledge translation and qualitative research methods. She has led or contributed to highly cited policy documents, and as an expert witness, has given evidence to major government inquiries. In her career, Amanda has attracted almost AU$104 million dollars of grant funding for research and major strategic initiatives.  Amanda has won teaching awards, has strong international partnerships, currently holds international grants, and mentors staff and students from a multitude of universities. She is Editor in Chief of the highly ranked Elsevier journal, Nurse Education Today. 

Amanda Kenny
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Related blogs

Gamification Blog
10 Feb 2020 | Dr Russell Crawford and Dr Sarah Aynsley

NET 2019 from a gamification researcher perspective

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Considerations for virtual delivery

In light of the situation regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, the NET Conference Committee tooken the decision to deliver NET2021 Conference online using Advance HE's virtual conferencing platform. The format of the conference remained the same: a mix of keynotes, symposia, theme sessions and virtual posters, spread across three days.

The NET Committee deeply considered all factors in reaching this decision and would like to share these with you: Considerations for virtual delivery.