Annual Conference 2022 Update and FAQs

The following is a message from ASE Chief Executive Hannah Russell regarding the planned ASE Annual Conference 2022... 

I’m afraid that the ASE Annual Conference, scheduled to begin on January 5, 2022 at Sheffield Hallam University, will no longer take place as planned – and will instead be run as an online offering towards the end of January and in February.

It is with huge regret that we have had to make this decision, given both the growing excitement within our organisation at the potential to meet so many of you face-to-face again in just a few weeks and the extraordinary amount of work the entire ASE team and the countless volunteers have put in to preparing for Sheffield. However, in light of the continuing uncertainty around the dangers of the Omicron variant, doubts over the potential of the newly announced vaccination drive to meet its December-end targets and the possibility of further restrictions being introduced by the government, we don’t feel that continuing with the Conference as planned is a viable course of action.

As CEO, my primary duty of care will always be for the safety of our staff, the wider ASE membership and other conference attendees and while we have done everything we can to mitigate against the threat of Covid-19, the emergence of Omicron has meant we must err on the side of caution. I also have a responsibility for the financial welfare of the organisation, and the increasing danger of a government-mandated last-minute cancellation – and the ever-increasing unrecoverable costs that would bring – would put significant pressure on a small charity such as ours which, like many other charities, has already been impacted by the pandemic.

Finally, we pride ourselves on the Annual Conference being a high-quality professional learning opportunity. With the increasing number of exhibitors and other organisations taking the understandable decision to pull their employees out in recent days, this meant we could no longer be confident in offering the type of experience our community has come to expect from this event.

I know this will be a huge disappointment for many of you, and everyone at the ASE shares that disappointment, but please rest assured we will be working flat out over the coming days to pull together an exceptional online alternative which will allow us all to come together once more to share our passion for excellence in science education.

We’ll be reaching out to everyone in our community over the coming week to lay out details of what we have planned, while those of you who have already bought tickets for the Sheffield event should already have been emailed about next steps. I hope to see you all as soon as humanly (and safely) possible…

Best regards and thank you as ever for your support,

Hannah Russell
ASE Chief Executive

 


 

If you are a paid-for ticket-holder, you should already have received an email with the subject line “Your booking for ASE Annual Conference...” to the address you provided when you initially brought your conference ticket - please check (including spam/junk mail folders). If you have not received that email, please complete this form to start the process.

FAQs

Why has this event been cancelled?

The emergence of the Omicron variant of Covid-19 has caused us to reconsider our plans owing to three key factors: 
A: Safety – Whilst we have strived to do everything we can to mitigate against the threat of Covid-19, the emergence of Omicron has meant we must err on the side of caution as the wellbeing of our staff, the wider ASE membership and conference delegates is paramount. 
B: Financial viability – We are a small charity that has already seen income restricted by Covid, the increasing danger of a government-mandated last-minute cancellation – and the growing unrecoverable costs that would bring – would have put significant pressure on our financial sustainability.  
C: Quality - We pride ourselves on the Annual Conference being a high-quality professional learning opportunity. With the increasing number of exhibitors and other organisations taking the understandable decision to pull out their employees in recent days, this meant we could no longer be confident in offering the type of experience our community has come to expect from this event. 

Will there be an online alternative to replace the face-to-face conference?

Yes – We are currently planning the timetable for our Online offer, which will be drawn from sessions due to have taken place in Sheffield. The initial two dates of Friday Jan 28th and Saturday Jan 29th will include conference sessions suitable for all audience types with a dedicated Techncians Day on Friday 28th January. Two more full-days are planned; Saturday 19th February will focus on 11-19 teaching and learning and Saturday February 26th will be a dedicated Primary science education day.

What does the face to face conference cancellation mean for my ticket... can I keep my ticket for next year, transfer it to the online version or get a refund?

The answer to all three scenarios is yes. If you are a paid-for ticket-holder, you should already have received an email with the subject line “Your booking for ASE Annual Conference...” to the address you provided when you initially brought your conference ticket - please check (including spam/junk mail folders). If you have not received that email, please complete this form to start the process.

I was due to be presenting a session at conference this year, what does this mean for me now?

As a Presenter you should already have received an email from the Conferences team. We will be working with many of this year’s presenters to build our online programme and the same team will be in touch with you over the next few weeks.

When and where will Annual Conference 2023 take place?

We are delighted to confirm that we are planning for this to take place at Sheffield Hallam University from Wednesday 4th January to Saturday 7th January 2023 inclusive.

My school paid for my ticket - what do I need to do to organise a refund?

Please provide us with the Eventbrite order reference number and email it through to conferences@ase.org.uk

Now that the conference has gone online, will it be on the same dates as before?

No – whilst the International Day Online will take place as scheduled on January 12, the replacement \Online offer for the face-to-face conference will not take place from January 5-8. The dates for the online conference will be 28 & 29 January, and 19 and 26 February. 

How much will online conference tickets cost?

Prices start from £50 for ASE members - please see the tickets page for the options available from one day to four days. (Please book International Day using the separate ticket type).

Can I use my ticket for the online conference and get a refund on any potential price difference?

Owing to administrative considerations, this is not possible. Tickets must either be exchanged like-for-like, transferred to next year’s Annual Conference or refunded. There is of course nothing stopping you from initiating the refund process while at the same time purchasing a ticket for the online alternative.

What sessions will be included in the online programme?

The online programme is currently being planned based on the previously timetabled face to face sessions, so delegates can rest assured that there will be a wide range of keynotes, panels and online workshops, incorporating all of the main conference themes pre-determined by the ASE Committees.  

How long will my refund take to process?

We will aim to process all refunds within one month of receiving the request. However, given the administrative processes involved, the multiple payment pathways delegates use and the proximity of the Christmas and New Year Bank Holidays, we are unable to guarantee any particular timeline. Payments taken by credit card will be refunded onto the same card via Eventbrite. Payments already paid by invoice will be refunded via BACS directly from the ASE. For invoices yet to be paid, our Conferences team will be in touch directly with delegates or their finance offices.

If I hold my ticket for next year, will I be charged extra if the ticket prices rise?

No, you will be able to attend ASE Annual Conference 2023 at no extra cost, your ticket will be exchanged for an equivalent number of days next year.

I am happy to convert my conference tickets to online equivalents, and to donate any potential difference in price to the ASE, how do I do this?

Please complete this form.

How will I be able to access the online conference?

All registered delegates in Eventbrite will receive an email containing a timetable of sessions with Zoom links and passwords, on the afternoon prior to each day's sessions. Please ensure you  register on Eventbrite with your email to receive the Zoom links and also check the appropriate junk/spam folder before emailing conferences@ase.org.uk in the case of queries.

Will there be opportunities to interact with exhibitors during the online conference?

It is likely that for each day, there will be an opportunity for one of our key partners to occupy the lunchtime slots to take questions, offer new resources and exclusive discounts for the duration of the Conference.

Will the online conference sessions be recorded and made available to delegates?

Yes, a vast selection of sessions will be made available as recordings to watch on demand post-event for a few weeks afterwards.

If I am unable to attend the online conference, can I still access the recordings?

Yes, all you need to do is book your ticket and you will receive access to the recordings post-event to the email you used to register within Eventbrite.

How will I be able to access the recordings?

All paying delegates will receive details on how to access the recordings via the email used to purchase their tickets.

How long will recordings be available for?

Recordings will be available to all paying delegates until the end of March 2022.

Will International Day Online still go ahead on January 12?

Yes, International Day Online will go ahead as planned via Zoom.

I’ve bought a ticket for the Friday Formal dinner, what happens now?

Your Friday Formal Dinner ticket will be refunded to you via the original payment method. Due to a high volume of tickets to refund, please allow our team some additional time to process your refund.

What happens with my PSQM golden ticket/ECT free CPD day?

If you would to like to use your free day to book onto the online conference for 2022, you will need to rebook on Eventbrite for your chosen online day. If you are a PSQM Golden Ticket participant who booked prior to 23rd December, you will have received an email with new instructions to register for the Online date of your choice. 

I bought tickets at a reduced price through the Wolfson project, what happens now?

You will still be able to use your reduced-price tickets at the online days. The same refund policies mentioned above will apply.