University Team collects UCISA-Eduserv Award for Excellence
The University of Leicester, in collaboration with four other universities, has won the UCISA-Eduserv Award for Excellence for its development of online Information Security Awareness Training. The Award seeks to recognise and highlight levels of excellence and best practice that currently exist and are demonstrated by UCISA members within the UK higher and further education sectors.
The submission from the University of Leicester focused on the project to develop, at minimal cost, high quality training material on information security suitable for all staff in a higher education institution. The project sought to ensure that the material would to meet the specific needs of the higher education sector, could be delivered online and for which completion was auditable. The material was developed collaboratively with Cranfield University, Imperial College London, the University of Leeds and the University of York, delivering a far better result than could have been achieved by a single institution.
The successful collaboration, engaging with a commercial company with expertise in the development of e-learning material, aligns with many of the themes picked out in the recent report from Universities UK’s Efficiency and Modernisation Task Group. Not only does it highlight an effective way of producing quality training material, it also promotes more efficient delivery of training to the wider university population.
Stephen Butcher, Chief Executive of sponsors Eduserv, commented, “Eduserv is delighted to be associated with this Award, which recognises the real difference initiatives such as this can make to the institution and the sector as a whole. The University of Leicester’s submission is an outstanding example of collaboration on a critical issue. We were impressed by the quality of the training materials and the cost effective manner of their production.”
The award was presented to the collaborative group by Stephen Butcher, Chief Executive of Eduserv, at a luncheon held at the University last Monday attended by the Vice-Chancellor and representatives from UCISA and the participating universities.
The development of the training forms part of a wider project to implement the University’s Information Security Policy and is being taken forward by a team with staff drawn from Information Assurance Services, IT Services and Geology.
A key member of the team was Mark Maynard, who unfortunately was diagnosed with cancer earlier in the year and very sadly passed away at the end of May. In receiving the award on behalf of the group, Colin Atkinson, Director of Information Assurance Services, paid tribute to the work of Mark and commented "Mark was a key driving force in the development from its initial conception to final delivery, and it is in very large part thanks to Mark’s work that we are here today receiving this award. I very much see this award not only as recognition of his work on the project but it also exemplifies the standard of the work that Mark did for the University throughout his career here."
Mary Visser, Director of IT Services, said “I’m delighted! This is a well-deserved Award and a very fitting tribute to Mark. The team really applied their imagination and have brought a dry but very important subject alive. This has helped to raise the profile of information security and it was an added bonus to save money by collaborating. I hope other institutions will now take advantage of this simple shared service idea that has really produced results.”