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Durham University

Internal Communications

Dialogue Signposts

19 June 2020

A Thank You from the Vice-Chancellor

Please take a moment to view a video ‘Thank you’ message from the Vice-Chancellor in which he highlights how the University Community has demonstrated our core values and 'stepped up' to the many challenges presented to us by Covid-19. This video was launched along with a Testimonial Presentation at the recent 'Leadership Summit' attended by over 120 senior leaders from across the University. The testimonials were provided by these colleagues and celebrate a range of contributions that have been made by students and staff to the University and the wider community at this time and it can be found at this link.

(19 Jun 2020)

Backgrounds in Teams

There is now a set of University themed background images for the Teams client on managed PCs and laptops. You can change your background before a meeting starts or even during a meeting. Please read on for instructions.

(19 Jun 2020) » More about Backgrounds in Teams

Dialogue Signposts for students

This week will be the last Student Signposts of the adademic year 2019-20. We will resume on Friday 2 October 2020. 

(19 Jun 2020)

Government update on Covid-19

Recently the UK government announced changes to the lockdown restrictions but has reinforced the message that the best way to help control the spread of Covid-19 is to limit your contact with others. Staying at home as much as possible is the easiest way to do this.

(19 Jun 2020)

Remote Working Survey

Colleagues in CIS and Estates & Facilities are conducting a survey to understand issues, requirements, trends and future demand in working remotely. The anonymous survey is open to all University staff and takes approximately 10 minutes to complete. The survey can be accessed online until 5pm on Wednesday 1 July.

(19 Jun 2020)

Safeguarding Children - updated e-learning package

The University Safeguarding training has been updated and a bespoke e-learning package called ‘Safeguarding Children’ is now available on DUO. 

(19 Jun 2020) » More about Safeguarding Children - updated e-learning package

Virtual Open Days

Open Days become virtual open month. Throughout July, we will be hosting a series of live virtual events to showcase the best of Durham University to our prospective students, replacing our on-campus Pre-application Open Days.

(19 Jun 2020) » More about Virtual Open Days

Book-drop at Bill Bryson Library

As part of our planning to start to ease our way out of lockdown, we have been able to develop a drop off service for the return of any Durham University Library books to the Bill Bryson Library.

(18 Jun 2020) » More about Book-drop at Bill Bryson Library

DUO module for offsite travel and work

The Health and Safety Service has published a new training course for any university member (staff or student), who is planning to undertake work which involves travel away from Durham.

(18 Jun 2020) » More about DUO module for offsite travel and work

Durham University Alumni 25% Fee Scholarship

Do you have a student graduating this year who is thinking about a postgrad? For 2020-21, the University is introducing the Durham University Alumni 25% Fee Scholarship to provide 25% towards the cost of tuition fees for all postgraduate taught Masters and PGCE programmes – including MA, MSc, PGCE, LLM and MBA – for all of our global alumni and forthcoming graduates. 

(18 Jun 2020) » More about Durham University Alumni 25% Fee Scholarship

Encore Cloud downtime

On Saturday 27 June, Encore will be unavailable whilst the latest version upgrade is applied to our Panopto Cloud portal. The maintenance is expected to start at 10pm and end at 1am on Sunday 28 June. During this period, the following Encore features will be unavailable: integrations, processing/ encoding, recording/ uploading, search, video playback and website access. Users are advised not to make any recordings during this time.

(18 Jun 2020)

Encore Desktop Recorder upgrade - 7.1

On Friday 19 June at 10pm we will be upgrading the Encore Desktop Recorder to version 7.1. The new version will be available via AppsAnywhere and also via the official Panopto website. This upgrade includes both the Windows and Mac versions. AppsAnywhere users will notice the 6.0 group will be removed and the new 7.1 version be available in its stead. Users simply need click on the new group and this will uninstall the old version and install the new. If there are any issues, please contact the Service Desk by the usual means.

(18 Jun 2020)

Grant applications preparation sessions

Research Development will be holding a series of small-group discussions to focus on preparation for standard grant applications to AHRC and ESRC; and to funding calls for GCRF. These sessions will be for groups of 3-6 people, held on a rolling basis, via zoom. Simply register your interest at and we will notify you as soon as we have enough people to form a group and arrange the session.

(18 Jun 2020) » More about Grant applications preparation sessions

Nominations for British Honours

We believe there are many unsung heroes across the University who deserve to be recognised. They need you to nominate them. Honours are given to a wide variety of individuals who make a significant contribution in their role, their field or in their community. Information on eligibility and how to submit nominations is published on our web pages.

(18 Jun 2020)

Opportunities for social science researchers

A range of new training and development opportunities is available for social science researchers, funded by the Accelerating Business Collaboration initiative. All current opportunities are available to view online here.

(18 Jun 2020) » More about Opportunities for social science researchers

Pre-sessional mentoring

We are looking for volunteer mentors to join our virtual Mentor Scheme for our pre-sessional students at Josephine Butler College this summer. Mentors on the pre-sessional programme have a unique position in providing a friendly face and an informal support system for international students before they arrive in Durham for their main course. No previous mentoring experience is necessary and relevant training and an induction will be given. If you are interested or would like more information, please email

(18 Jun 2020)

Preparing for Teaching in 20/21 - Introduction to teaching and learning online

The Introduction to Teaching and Learning Online course will help you to understand what it is like to be a student in an online teaching environment and to develop modules that can be taught either face-to-face or online.

(18 Jun 2020) » More about Preparing for Teaching in 20/21 - Introduction to teaching and learning online

Staff network coffee break

The next staff network coffee break will be held on Microsoft Teams on Thursday 25 June at 2pm. This is an informal networking opportunity for staff, those who have been here awhile, those who have just joined and those who are due to start over the next few months, to chat with other colleagues; to support each other, discuss any challenges and issues faced at this time and to meet new people. The link to join on the day is here. We hope you can join the chat. Any questions in advance please email

(18 Jun 2020)

The enterprising researcher - Develop your knowledge and engagement abilities

Wouldn’t it be great if every time you published your research, a paper or wanted to connect, you already had an established network of influencers ready to share it with? Join us for a supported virtual ‘Tweetup. A Tweetup is usually when a group of Twitter users meet up in person, for an event that's orchestrated via Twitter. Ours on Wednesday 1 July at 1pm will be slightly different. Interested? Then sign up here.

(18 Jun 2020) » More about The enterprising researcher - Develop your knowledge and engagement abilities

Three Minute Thesis (3MT) competition winner

The Durham Centre for Academic Development is delighted to announce the results of 2020 Three Minute Thesis (3MT) competition.

  • Winner: Laura Erel - Can we hear musical syntax?
  • Runner up: Vincent Brooks - Quantum LEGO: Building molecules, one atom at a time.
  • Runner up: Ying Yee - Computer-generated works and related copyright issues.

(18 Jun 2020) » More about Three Minute Thesis (3MT) competition winner