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  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    From developer to cloud developer



    From developer to cloud developerwindowsAzureLogo

    Microsoft Learning have now introduced a number of specific cloud examinations aimed at both the IT professional and developer.

    One of the new roles identified is the role of cloud developers. As a cloud developer, you’ll need to understand how applications are designed, developed, and deployed for platform as a service (PaaS).

    Cloud Developers will need to focus on innovation and integration, and work more closely with business units to help them increase productivity.

    As a result Microsoft Learning have developed a set of examinations and curricula to help expand students skills to meet this demand.

    Introduction to Microsoft Windows Azure Platform (Learning Snack)Windows Azure Step by Step (Microsoft Press)Course 10263: Developing Windows Communication Foundation Solutions with Microsoft Visual Studio 2010Course 10265: Developing Data Access Solutions with Microsoft Visual Studio 2010Developing Applications on Windows Azure Platform (with SQL Server 2012) (Jump Start)Course 50466: Windows Azure Solutions with Microsoft Visual Studio 2010

    Click to see exams and resources associated with this job role.
  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Update to Microsoft DreamSpark


    Today we made some exciting changes and improvements to DreamSpark, with the launch of a new site and rebranding of MSDNAA to Microsoft DreamSpark premium.

    DreamSpark is the first step for educators to make learning more motivating, relevant, and engaging for today’s students by providing no cost access to professional-level development, design, and gaming software.

    DreamSpark is:


    A unique opportunity for both students and educators to use the latest professional development, design and gaming software at no charge

    A chance to learn new technologies to excite students in classrooms

    Access to software and curriculum resources to help develop courses that will enable students to achieve their career goals after graduation

    A way to help educators expand their personal and professional portfolios and enhance classroom objectives

    For Students

    DreamSpark is simple; it's all about giving students Microsoft professional-level developer and designer tools at no charge so you can chase your dreams and create the next big breakthrough in technology - or just get a head start on your career.

    DreamSpark gives Students the chance to develop world class software, web applications, cool and creative designs as well as amazing games. Microsoft believes that students can do amazing things if they only have the right tools.

    For Academics

    DreamSpark is about giving educators no cost access to Microsoft professional-level developer, designer and gaming software so they can reach, motivate, and ensure their students achieve their greatest potential. DreamSpark gives you the software and resources to ensure your classroom always has the latest technologies to challenge, motivate, and keep students engaged in new ways.

    Learning must be relevant, exciting, and engaging. DreamSpark is aligned with universities, associations, and employers to ensure that educators are able to discover, create, and deliver courses to students that lead to increased technical proficiency, employability and of course creates the next generation of technical leaders.

    · DreamSpark Pricing Model and usage

    Free for all students – simply self-subscribe to DreamSpark via

    Free for all Schools being in the system and setup to provide their students verification solution
    This was is through domain, shibboleth, or Live@Edu validation
    Schools DreamSpark Administrators can request codes and give to their students

    For more details regarding Microsoft Dreamspark offering contact the DreamSpark support team

    NB. Licensing does not allow for the products to be used in class, and FREE licensing does not cover educators

    Changes to licensing and costs

    DreamSpark for Schools, College and Unis subscription is now available and priced at $99 FREE for EES customers – This change allows all DreamSpark software to be installed for teaching and learning on Institutional Lab machines and it’s a campus license as per EES so you only need to purchase 1 license and not 1 per school or faculty and if your a EES subscriber its included for FREE. (also it now covers educators and students for personal non-commercial usage and is available for all taught discipline, previously this only covered students usage and not licensed for intuitional equipment)

    DreamSpark Premium – Previously MSDNAA so includes more products including Visio, OneNote and Project and is aimed at STEM FE and HE institutions and all IT Academy Subscribers. The cost has been reduced to $499 from £1000+ (also it now covers educators and students for personal non-commercial usage and all lab installations)

    Microsoft was started when many of the founders were still students so we know that anything is possible. To make this happen, we are aligning with universities, associations, and other communities around the world to make sure that DreamSpark reaches everyone as fast as possible.

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Windows Phone Curricula Resources DVD and Online resources




    image    image

    DVD + On-line

    Windows Phone Programming in C# by Prof Rob Miles;

    WP7.5 update + extra modules
    This material contains a ten chapter textbook with labs, demos and step by step instructions on how to create Windows Phone 7 applications.

    1st & 2nd Year Programming courses

    Introduction to Game Programming with XNA and Windows Phone 7 by Prof Kelvin Sung (UW)

    WP7.5 update + new material

    This material is a 16-hour course designed to teach students how to build a 2D interactive video game.

    3rd & 4th Year (require background in data structure)

    Introduction to Mobile Application Development Using Silverlight by Michael Iantosca.

    WP7.5 update + new material

    Students learn the knowledge, skills, and abilities necessary to develop a mobile application on the Windows Phone 7.5 platform using Microsoft Silverlight. 2nd & 3rd Year: background in programming needed (preferably C#, but C, C++, Java helps

    Designing for Windows Phone by Microsoft

    This material contains the following 7 lessons on how to design for the Windows Phone: METRO Design, Building WP7 Assets, Layout Controls in Expression Blend, Creating Animation and Basic Interactivity, Working with the Visual State Manager, Adding Data to your Application and Creating the Flickr4Fun app. [ HCI and Software Dev-t classes 1nd - 3rd Year: ]

    Azure Mobile Curriculum by Rob Miles

    Find out how Cloud computing works and what it brings to the Windows Phone user. The content will show you how to use the cloud for data storage and databases, farm out heavyweight tasks for cloud data processing and use the cloud to perform identity validation. [addition to above courses]

    If you would like to receive a FREE copy of the CD please email with your University contact details and full UK postal address.



    Don't forget students can get great resources and developer tools for free from and check up on all the latest offers and prizes via the Microsoft UK Student Blog and Facebook Group

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Curriculum Resource Kits


    The Faculty Connection Resource Kits contain information to assist you in developing course materials. The Kits are grouped by subject and provide links to curriculum material and resources such as presentations, labs, exercises, software tools, programming tutorials, academic papers, research talks and reference material plus source code, documentation, specifications and more.

    Curriculum Resource Kits

    Operating Systems Faculty Resource Kit
    Operating Systems
    Microsoft Dynamics GP
    Microsoft Dynamics GP
    Microsoft Dynamics AX
    Microsoft Dynamics NAV
    Gaming, Game Development, and Design Faculty Resource Kit
    Gaming, Game Development, and Design
    Software Engineering Resource Kit
    Software Engineering
    Cloud Computing
    Cloud Computing
    Phone Development
    Phone Development
  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Kinect Hardware and Software release announced as 1st Feb 2012



    The new Kinect for Windows hardware and accompanying software will be available on February 1st, 2012 at a suggested retail price of US $249.

    Kinect for Windows hardware will be available, in limited quantities at first, through a variety of resellers and distributors. The price includes a one-year warranty, access to ongoing software updates for both speech and human tracking, and our continued investment in Kinect for Windows-based software advancements. Later this year, we will offer special academic pricing (planned at US $149) for Qualified Educational Users.

    For more details on this announcement see

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    2012 Microsoft Dynamics Academic Alliance Conference



    2012 Microsoft Dynamics Academic Alliance Preconference Hosted by the Microsoft Dynamics® Academic Alliance
    Associated with Microsoft Convergence 2012 (March 18-21)

    Preconference: March 17-18, 2012
    Embassy Suites Houston-Downtown, Houston, TX, USA

    Deadline for Refereed Paper Submissions: January 28, 2012

    Deadline for Presentation and Panel Discussion Submissions: February 1, 2012


    The Microsoft Dynamics Academic Alliance (DynAA) Preconference provides an important forum for the exchange of ideas and information for current and prospective DynAA members. DynAA invites papers/abstracts in research, research-in-progress, teaching, applications, and case studies incorporating Microsoft Dynamics into business and information systems curricula.

    Suggested topics include (but are not limited to):
    • Accounting Information Systems
    • Business Intelligence/Analytics
    • Business Performance Management
    • Cloud Computing
    • Curriculum Design Issues
    • Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
    • Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP)
    • Financial Reporting Systems
    • Information Audit
    • Information Assurance/Security
    • Information System Project Management
    • Information Systems/Computer Technology
    • Supply Chain Management


    Author(s) may present teaching or research ideas/papers (including case studies, etc.) and request publication of paper or detailed abstract in the DynAA conference proceedings. Detailed abstract and full paper submissions will undergo a double-blind review process. At least one of the authors must certify intent to attend the conference.

    The format of the presentations includes round-table or classroom style limited to 25 minutes (including questions).
    Microsoft Dynamics® Academic Alliance | Microsoft Dynamics Academic Preconference 2012 DynAA will publish conference proceedings in CD/DVD format and online. In addition, the best quality papers from those accepted will be recommended to the Journal of Integrated Enterprise Systems for publication.

    Full paper and detailed abstract submissions require the use of Microsoft Office Word format, double-spacing, minimum 11 font size, and 3 to 20 pages. Manuscripts should follow APA guidelines for citations and references (See

    The deadline for online submission is January 28, 2012. No hardcopy will be accepted. Authors will receive email notification of acceptance/rejection by February 10, 2012. Final revisions of accepted extended abstract or papers for publication in conference proceedings are due February 25, 2012.


    Author(s) may present a topic (case studies, issues in using software, class projects, software installation, etc.) or conduct a panel discussion that is not published in the refereed proceedings. (If the author wants to publish the topic/paper in the proceedings, please see the preceding instructions.) These submissions require author(s) to submit their proposal within an abstract limited to 100 words.
    The format of the presentations includes round-table or classroom style limited to 25 minutes (including questions). At least one author must certify intent to attend the conference. The deadline for online submission is February 1, 2012. Authors will receive email notification of acceptance/rejection by February 10, 2012.


    Click the following link for online submissions:
    If you have any problems in submitting your paper, extended abstract, proposed presentation, or panel discussion online, please e-mail it to and cc to

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    TechEd Europe Summer 2012



    The next Tech·Ed Europe will be held the week of June 25, 2012 at the Amsterdam RAI Exhibition and Convention Centre in the historical and picturesque city of Amsterdam.

    Confirmed pricing for academic rates is a follows which are a significant saving over the early bird and standard rates.

    Delegate - Academic Faculty and Student Fee


    Delegate - Early Bird Registration Fee (ends 31 March 2012)


    Delegate - Standard Registration Fee




    PreCon Only


    For more information and updates please register here

    Registrations will open early Jan 2012 so ensure you check the site to guarantee your place.

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Windows Azure licensing via ESS for UK Institutions



    Did you know your Institution could get access to Windows Azure Cloud Platform services via and existing Enrolment for Education Solutions (EES) agreement?

    The simple answer is YES.. from December 1st 2011, Windows Azure Platform services will be available as Additional Product under EES to Academic Customers.

    So if your interested in adding Windows Azure to your existing Microsoft Campus licensing agreements please contact your Microsoft Licensing Account Manager.


    Windows Azure Homepage:

    Windows Azure Case Studies:

    Windows Azure FAQ:

    Windows Azure  Videos:

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    .NET Gadgeteer Useful Resources & Links



    If your interested in developing new curricula in 2012, which will really stimulate your students then you need to have a look at  .NET Gadgeteer.

    The .NET Gadgeteer is an amazing  platform, so if your interested in teaching and inspiring students practically about electronics, microcontrollers, robotics and Computer Science.


    The .NET Gadgeteer is an ideal resources, as its name suggest the .NET Gadgeteer is based on the .NET Micro Framework, using C# as the primary development language.


    C# is available as part of Visual Studio 2010 and can be downloaded via existing MSDNAA subscriptions or via DreamSpark for Free by all UK Students.

    Who are the Manufacturers

    Gadgeteer boards and modules are primarily available from the following manufactures


    • GHI Electronics – .NET Gadgeteer mainboard, and supplier of many modules as well.

    SEED logo

    • Seeed Studio  – Maker of numerous sensor modules, from gyro and compass to accelerometer and GPS.


    Community and Microsoft Sites

    There are a number of excellent resources available online to begin your Gadgeteer adventures and to ask questions about .NET Gadgeteer hardware or software:

    • .NET Gadgeteer Site -  Microsoft .NET Gadgeteer is an open-source toolkit for building small electronic devices using the .NET Micro Framework and Visual Studio/Visual C# Express. Build all manner of electronic gadgets quickly and easily with .NET Gadgeteer!
    • TinyCLR Gadgeteer Forum – Run by GHI, this forum is dedicated to .NET Gadgeteer topics, and is very active, with a number of smart and friendly folks from the community pitching in to help newcomers get started.
    • Seeed Studio Forum – Technical support and device device drivers for Seeed products.
    • Official .NET Gadgeteer Forums –  The official Microsoft Research team responsible for Gadgeteer
    • Core Gadgeteer API documentation – API resources and information, this is a good place to start.
    • Gadgeteer Source on Codeplex – when documentation alone isn't enough, you can always check out the source code to see what's really happening under the covers.
    • Skewworks – Supplies additional software useful in .NET MF and Gadgeteer projects, including UI libraries and operating environments that allow for running multiple applications without reflashing.


    Here are some good blogs on .Net Gadgeteer:

    Supplies & Parts, for bigger better projects

    Although you can do a great deal with just a mainboard and a few modules, eventually you're going to want to go beyond, and for that you'll probably want some additional gadgets to your projects, things like a breadboard, jumper wires, LEDs one of the best places in the UK to get these items in the UK for your Gadgeteer projects is They have a vast array of accessories, from LEDs to header pins, jumper wires, servos, motors. 

    So 2012 looks a very interesting year for curricula developments using .NET Gadgeteer

    More importantly .NET Gadgeteer is a neat way of introducing students of all ages to STEM.

    Happy New Year!

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Welcome 2012 - 2011 The year of Kinect !


    “We always overestimate change that will occur in the next two years and underestimate the change that will occur in the next ten!” Bill Gates


    Well 2011 may well go down as one of those years where we all truly underestimated the pace of technology innovation with the phenomenal rise of . 2011 in may ways was the year of Kinect. Throughout 2011, The UK Academic team have been constantly inspired and amazed by the work faculty, researchers and students have done atop the platform to enhance human computer interaction.

    You can take a look some of this innovation over at: &

    And if you have yet to take a look at the Kinect for Windows SDK you can find it here along with additional resources and documentation. 

    Lastly, We thought it fitting to highlight Microsoft Research’s Review of 2011 as inspiration for our 2012 Olympic Year !

    Year in ReviewResearch quadrants user interface

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