James Curran

Associate Professor in Computer Science

University of Sydney & Digital Technologies Writer for the Australian Curriculum

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James Curran is an Associate Professor in the School of Information Technologies, University of Sydney. His research is in computational linguistics — the field of Artificial Intelligence involved in understanding natural languages, like English and Chinese. James is Director of the National Computer Science School, the largest computer science school outreach program in Australia.  Last year, over 9,000 students and teachers participated in the 5-week NCSS Challenge. James is a co-founder of Grok Learning, an edtech startup aims to children everywhere to learn to code.


James was a writer on the Australian Curriculum: Digital Technologies, the new national computing curriculum. He has won Faculty, University and national awards for university teaching excellence; and AIIA iAward, and an Engineering Australia (Sydney Division) Excellence award (Education and Training). Last year, he was named ICT Leader of the Year by the ICT Educators of NSW and the Australian Council for Computers in Education.

Speaking On:
Welcome remarks from Chair
Interpreting the curriculum & unpacking the key concepts
PANEL DISCUSSION: Setting up strategies & programs for professional development

How to teach the digital technologies curriculum at a secondary level

Matt Richards


The Mind Lab by Unitec (NZ)

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Matt is the Director of The Mind Lab in Wellington, New Zealand. He leads a team of innovative educators providing future-focused learning experiences for students and teachers.
Matt pioneered the maker education movement in Australian schools setting up the first permanent K-12 maker space. He facilitated student experiments on the International Space Station. Matt employs emerging technologies such as virtual reality and robotics to transform learning. He leads Mineclass (an international Minecraft learning project). Matt is an advocate of global learning communities and evolving educational paradigms. He is a keynote speaker at international technology & education events. Matt is a Google Certified Innovator, Google Educator Group Leader & Microsoft Innovative Educator Expert.

Speaking On:
HANDS ON HOW TO SESSION: Aligning pedagogical frameworks around curriculum content delivery

How to design a curriculum implementation plan

Leanne Robertson

Program Director, Education Services Ausrtalia

Senior Manager, Digital Technologies Hub

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Leanne Robertson is a Program Director at Education Services Australia (ESA). She has led educational resource development and research projects for over thirteen years. Leanne first became interested in digital technologies in the 90s while teaching in a primary school in New Zealand where, along with a colleague, they stimulated interest in the school community by holding Sunday family internet sessions in their homes. This and other activity resulted in funds being raised to purchase internet connected PCs for each class. Following this Leanne was involved in the development of New Zealand’s Information Technology Roadshow before moving to Australia where she has worked on the start-up of a telecommunications travel company, completed her Masters in IT in education and worked on numerous projects for The Learning Federation, Curriculum Corporation and ESA.

Speaking On:
PRACTICAL SUPPORT: Digital Technologies hub one stop shop to support implementation

Building capacity to implement the new digital technologies curriculum

On 18th September 2015 the Education Council endorsed the Australian Curriculum: Digital Technologies. Each state will have their own approach, but teaching programming, web development, systems, design and computational thinking will be essential learning outcomes. Recognising how to put this into practice in the classroom will be crucial. Is your school ready to implement? Are your teachers prepared? Do you know what this will look like across different learning areas and band levels?


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  • Unpack the curriculum language to understand how to implement in the classroom
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  • Professional development to build teacher confidence and capabilities
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  • Aligning curriculum content with appropriate pedagogies
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  • Integrating systems, design & computational thinking across existing curriculum
Day 1

Julie King

Curriculum Lead, Technologies, Australian Curriculum


James Curran

Associate Professor in Computer Science

University of Sydney & Digital Technologies Writer for the Australian Curriculum

Katrina Falkner

Head of School, Computer Science

University of Adelaide

Katie Ford

Corporate Affairs Manager

Intel Australia and NZ

Day 2

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