August Newsletter - Fringe Ideas


Jilly MacKay


August 30, 2023

Listening to a podcast (Scamanda) on the way home from nursery, I was struck by the host’s need to explain the blogosphere to the audience. Bloggers were apparently the original influencers, who knew? In the same week, a colleague said that they’d joined X-Twitter because they were told it was good for someone wanting to do more research, and they’d found it un-usable. I find this confluence of events encouraging for the monthly round-up format. So what happened to me in August?

Highlights this month

I hadn’t realised that Frontiers assigns individual editors to each paper. This helps explain their prolific output. Apologies to the poor authors assigned me, I just simply will not badger peer reviewers to give more of their time away.

At the vet school, we had a great session with Mark Hoelterhoff (Twitter) looking at how we can embed wellbeing through the Edinburgh Lead Well Framework (more about this can be found on the Thrive page at Edinburgh)

Emily Nordmann and I are looking at definitions of hybrid, hy-flex and blended learning in higher education. We welcome anyone working in Higher Ed to respond to the survey. Please don’t use ChatGPT to fill in the responses, as some folk already have. Incidentally, data cleaning in the era of ChatGPT, yay!

I’m continuing to really enjoy the PositConf speaker training sessions and get a lot more out of them than I thought I would

Things I found

While trying to remember how ordinal regressions worked, I came across an amazing resource by Jonas Lindeløv: a linear model framework for statistics in R and a python port by George Ho!. I’ve always loved this framework for modelling and I feel I rediscover it every few years and get convinced all over again. This winter I have a lot of course materials to write, and I definitely think I’ll be using this approach once more. Great resource.

Also I’m on BlueSky now:


Took my daughter to see Bubbalicious at the Fringe which I hugely recommend. Excellent example of expectation setting at the start too as one of my daughter’s friends leapt up to investigate the stage and was encouraged to do so. You love to see it.