Hosted at the University of Brighton and co-organised by the University and Catalyst EU, the Mahara UK14 conference saw representatives from across the UK, New Zealand, Finland, Switzerland, Czech Republic, Republic of Ireland and Germany.
This year MaharaUK was the biggest yet with delegate numbers jumping from the usual 70 to around 130.
Keynote speakers Lisa Gray, Dr Judith Wayte and Gordon Joyes presented their JISC funded research on eportfolios 'Crossing the threshold: Moving e-portfolios into the mainstream' and Aaron Wells (Mahara Technical Lead) delivered a brilliant 'State of the Mahara Nation' Address.
Over the 2 day event an evolution of breakout presentations was noticeable, with session topics moving away from initial implementations to managing ongoing use and fostering successful user groups.
For the week leading up to, and for the duration of the conference, organisers ran the Mahara UK14 Game. The game was managed via Leaderboarded and Twitter and delegates earned points for tweets, retweets, mentions and various photo challenges (see http://maharauk.org/course/view.php?id=3). At one point delegates had the hashtag #maharauk14 trending within the UK.
Catalyst IT hosted the conference evening event and sponsored drinks and nibbles. Despite hot, humid weather delegates had a great time at the Brighton SeaLife Centre and enjoyed Spanish tapas while sipping some local ales and ciders alongside the sharks, sea turtles and poison dart frogs.
Mahara UK14 was a hugely successful event, with many attendees commenting it was the best UK conference so far.
Sincere thanks go out to: The University of Brighton (especially Adam Bailey and Katie Piatt), Emily and Laura from SouthCoast Conferences, Aaron Wells, Paul Stevens, David Drummond and Kristina Hoeppner from Catalyst IT, Lisa Gray, Dr Judith Wayte and Gordon Joyes and all breakout session presenters.