Our crew

Megan Quentin-Baxter – Co-Chair

Megan is Professor of Health Professions Education and Director of Engagement, School of Medical Sciences Education Development at Newcastle University. She was formerly Director of MEDEV, Higher Education Academy, and is a Newcastle Teaching Fellow and a SCORE Fellow. She is interested in all areas of support for teaching and learning, especially technology enhanced learning, including creating enablers and promoting risk-managed approaches to sharing learning materials in HE, and represents ‘TEL’ on ASME Executive. Megan has led major projects including PublishOER and supported others such as ‘Promoting open approaches with the UK PSRB/subject associations in medicine’ and iridium (Managing Research Data). She is a key partner in a recently awarded Research Councils project ‘Co-curate North East’. She has a strong interest in ethics in digital professionalism and is a consultant to the Leadership Foundation HE. Megan is an active member of teaching staff a personal tutor and an examiner for MBBS in-course assessment. She serves on Student Progress Committee; Digital Rights Working Group; Internal Subject Review; Faculty Ethics Committee; and Regs and Approvals. She has been on many national project/service Advisory Boards, such as special committees for the UK Higher Education Funding Councils, HEA and Jisc, and those seeking to join up UK HE eLearning services. She has links with the MSC eAssessment Centre and ASPiH and its National Simulation Officer network. She is not a great tweeter/blogger but you can occasionally find her @meganqb.

Simon Thomson – Co-Chair

Simon Thomson is the Head of eLearning at Leeds Metropolitan University (UK). His research outputs are in the fields of open education and technology supported learning. A large part of his role at the institution is engaging academic colleagues in undertaking development activities for online & blended learning. He is a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy in recognition of his role in embedding innovation projects & technology enhanced learning practices across the institution. He passionately believes that technology is an enabler of learning, increasing access, flexibility and enhancement of the student experience, but that it is no substitute for poor learning design. In 2009/10 he implemented an institutional OER strategy and repository at Leeds Metropolitan University which remains actively in place today as part of it’s embedded sustainable model. As the co-chair of OER14 he is particularly keen to develop a sense of fun and gameplay to the conference. If you were at OER13 then you will already have had a taste of this! – Keep an eye out for the activity updates!  Simon is on twitter @digisim and online here: http://www.flippedacademic.co.uk/

Chris Pegler

Chris develops and leads online courses within the Open University’s MA in Online and Distance Education and researches reuse of online open resources in its Institute of Educational Technology. She founded the ORIOLE (Open Resources: Influence on Learners and Educators) project and was Academic Director of the national Support Centre for Open Resources in Education (SCORE). As a UK National Teaching Fellow her approach to online learning design is informed by over two decades managing distance and e-learning, supplemented by experience as both online tutor and student. She has particular interest in supporting fellow practitioners. Chris co-edits and co-founded (with Professor Allison Littlejohn) the Routledge book series Connecting with eLearning, within which she co-authored Preparing for Blended eLearning and The Educational Potential of ePortfolios. She co-chaired OER13 with Jackie Carter, one of the most rewarding and interesting experiences of her career. Chris lives in Warwickshire on a 4 acre smallholding with husband Steve Davies (ex-Becta) and in her spare time spins wool from their own sheep. She eagerly anticipates organizing the bi-annual summer school for the Association of Guilds of Weavers, Spinners and Dyers in 2015. She is (of course) a member of the online guild. 

Andy Lane

Andy is Professor of Environmental Systems at The Open University. He has a BSc in Plant Sciences and a PhD in Pest Management from the University of London. He is a Member of the Institute for Ecology and Environmental Management and a Chartered Environmentalist. He has been at the OU since 1983 and held various offices in the former Technology Faculty (now Faculty of Mathematics, Computing and Technology) including being Head of the Systems Department, Associate Dean and Dean. Andy was Director of The Open University’s OpenLearn Initiative from 2006-09 (www.open.ac.uk/openlearn); served as a Board member of the OpenCourseWare Consortium from 2008-10; has been involved in a number of European OER initiatives such as MORIL (http://moril.eadtu.eu/) and OER-HE (http://www.eadtu.nl/oerhe/); was the Senior Fellow in the Support Centre for Open Resources in Education at the OU (http://www8.open.ac.uk/score/) from 2009-12; has led the SusTEACH project (http://www.open.ac.uk/blogs/susteach/) investigating the carbon impacts of HE teaching models from 2011-12; and has been involved in all the OER conferences since 2010. Andy has authored or co-authored many teaching texts, research papers and other publications dealing with systems thinking and environmental management; the use of diagramming to aid systems thinking and learning; and systems of open education, especially the use of open educational resources.

Terry McAndrew

Terry works as an Accessibility Advisor for Jisc TechDis and also as an Academic Lead for Digital Literacies in the Disciplines in the Higher Education Academy (HEA). He was formerly the C&IT Manger for the UK Centre for Bioscience (HEA) and the C&IT officer for the School of Biomedical Sciences at the University of Leeds where he worked for 34 years. He has co-authored research publications in biological shape analysis (Morphometrics) and investigated the application of Neural Networks for the objective statistical analysis of biological skeletal structures with respect to their genetics for his MSc dissertation. He has many years’ experience of teaching the application of IT for developing data-handling and statistical skills in the Biosciences to both staff and students. Terry also has managed projects in all three rounds of the UKOER programme (2010-2013) to investigate and develop the use of Open Educational Resources. He is interested in e-publishing and developed the e-journal Bioscience Education for the Subject Centre – producing 19 volumes with the team. In his spare time he enjoys photography, occasionally playing the guitar and frequently helping teach dance (modern jive) along with his daughter, in order to keep fit and combat the effects of diabetes. He appeared in two dance charity events in 2012-13, helping to raise approximately £43,000 for charities.

Chrissi Nerantzi


I am an Academic Developer at Manchester Metropolitan University. My approach is playful and experimental and I specialise in creative and innovative learning, teaching and assessment.  I model and promote these actively through my practice and related research activities. My current research interests are among others open educational practice, game-based learning and the use of Lego Serious Play in Education. In 2013, I developed and offered the open course Flexible, distance and Online Leaning (#FDOL131 and #FDOL132), see http://fdol.wordpress.com/, with two colleagues from the Karolinska Institutet in Sweden an open Continuing Professional Development course for teachers in Higher Education.  The course aimed to extend learning opportunities, build bridges for wider collaborations beyond institutional boundaries and connect teachers in HE to share experiences, ideas, develop their understanding around innovative teaching and learning practices in the digital age. I am also a PhD student at Edinburgh Napier and am carrying out research around open educational practice in the area of Academic Development. Catch me @chrissinerantzi and at [email protected].

Sarah Bridgman


As a Creative Writing graduate, Sarah found her way into educational publishing through the distance learning unit of The Royal College of Nursing.  A year later, she became an editor at The Open University (OU), working on course materials for the Faculty of Health and Social Care. She first became acquainted with open educational resources (OER) during her Masters degree in online and distance education. With her editorial experience and newly acquired postgraduate skills, she soon found herself on the path of delivering informal learning through OpenLearn (www.open.edu/openlearn) – the home of free learning from The OU.  For the last few years she has worked on many online projects derived from the unique relationship with the BBC and has produced fun and engaging OER for the world to use. In Sarah’s spare time, when she’s not studying, she likes to watch re-runs of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and indulge in her hobby of collecting brightly coloured shoes. She is also a massive fan of Twitter and you can follow her ramblings (often vampire- and shoe-related) https://twitter.com/SarahMay81.

Ben Ryan

Dr Ryan started his career working for a specialist typesetting and printing company dedicated to the production of high quality scientific and medical journals both in print and online. He then moved into working in the educational sector on the development of tools, technologies and standards to support the use of digital learning resources underpinned by repository based services for their delivery. Since 2008 he worked within the Timescapes project to develop the present archive and support the process of research data aquisition from the Timescapes projects for use within the archive. He is currently working as the Technical Manager for Jorum a service for sharing and discovering open educational content that can be used in teaching and learning for the JISC Community.

Jackie Carter


Jackie wears many hats. She is the Jorum director, and has worked in the Open Educational Resources space for more than a decade. One of the most fruitful experiences was her time as SCORE fellow – between 2011-2012 – when she undertook a project on Sharing OERs for Statistical Literacy Using Real World Data (http://www.open.ac.uk/score/fellows/jackie-carter), and met many OER aficionados. In 2013 she co-chaired OER13 with Chris Pegler and was hugely proud of the conference buzz, feedback and the NUS keynote. Jackie is also Director for Communications and Impact for the ESRC funded UK Data Service (ukdataservice.ac.uk) and is currently striving to raise the profile of the value of real world data in social and economic research and teaching to explore global issues. As Learning and Teaching senior manager at Mimas (mimas.ac.uk) she is involved in innovative teaching projects and services. She heads up the Hairdressing Training service (hairdressingtraining.ac.uk) which won an award for innovation in 2008 and became open access in 2010, and more recently has led the SCARLET team to success with their work on use of Augmented Reality in the classroom with Special Collections materials; SCARLET was awarded the joint runner-up prize for ALT’s Learning Technology of the Year Team award (2012) and the winning prize for the inaugural EICE  award (May 2013) (see SCARLET blog at http://teamscarlet.wordpress.com/2013/05/20/team-scarlet-wins-an-award-for-innovation/). As a former high school teacher (of mathematics and Physical Education) Jackie is passionate about education and especially about the student experience.

David Kernohan

Now this is a story all about how my life got turned all upside down, let me take a minute just sit in this location and I’ll tell you how I became an expert in higher education. In De Monfort University taught and raised, in the IT lab is where I spent most of my days chilling out, maxing, and seriously relaxing, reading up on Derrida, Baudrillard and Bakhtin, but in a couple of years I’d got my degree, start temping in another university. I did one QAA visit and the department didn’t fail, so I moved off to Glamorgan which is down in South Wales. Staff developed for a year and I got itchy feet – HEFCE sounded fresh, and the pay rise was sweet. If anything I could say that I was quite keen, but I managed four years in the policy team. I ran CETLs and eLearning and FDTL, got offered a secondment and I though “what the hell”. Looked at Beacon House and although it seemed a risk, that was how I became the fresh prince of JISC. David  is a Programme Manager for e-Learning at Jisc. He works on online and open education there, having managed a range of major initiatives including the Open Education Resources programme. He also has an expertise in English Higher Education policy and global HE trends, having previously worked for HEFCE as a policy analyst.

Suzanne Hardy

Highly experienced in promoting eLearning in healthcare professions. Suzanne worked on 7 UKOER funded projects awarded to Newcastle University, including PublishOER, PORSCHE and OOER.  Suzanne has been an invited speaker on strategies for implementing and sustaining open educational resources most recently at for example CILIP Executive Briefing on eCopyright 2013, and CETIS 13. She continues to work in eLearning at Newcastle University, promoting open practice and use of open licensing for learning & teaching resources and research data via work on ePortfolio, eAssessment and Feedback, personal tutoring, open and distance learning provision at Newcastle University, and providing advice on copyright and consent issues via the University’s Digital Rights Working Group. In her spare time she is an avid knitter, enthusiastic cook and dutiful cat employee. All of which she Tweets about fairly obsessively along with her semi pathetic attempts to resculpt her body back to days when she worked with dancers. She also likes soup.

Simon Kear

Simon Kear is an Academic Developer specialising in Technology-Enhanced Learning at Goldsmiths, University of London. Previously, Simon was Senior Learning Technologist (Keeper of the Media Zoo) in the Beyond Distance Research Alliance, University of Leicester, and began in the unit on the Jisc/HEA funded OTTER project, which focused on the creation of institutional OER. He worked across numerous projects within the department, and was responsible for ensuring capacity-building in the use of learning technologies within the university as part of the department’s research-to-practice remit. Simon also worked closely with academic course teams to design learning for the online environment through Carpe Diem and other learning interventions. For two years, Simon was responsible for organising and delivering Follow the Sun, an innovative, 48-hour, online conference hosted by the University of Leicester in the UK, Athabasca University in Canada and the University of Southern Queensland in Australia. Simon’s main interests lie in learning design and openness. He is an OU Associate Lecturer and is currently enrolled on the MA in Online and Distance Education, so plans to be especially nice to Chris. He is married with a young baby so therefore has no hobbies or social life. Simon has cracked the secret of getting busy academic staff to engage with learning technologies and open educational practice and finds it very easy, but is unwilling to share this with colleagues without a considerable financial inducement.

Alastair Clark

Alastair has a career history of working in formal and informal education and a strong personal interest in the outdoors. His career in Youth and Community work started in Birmingham and then moved to Suffolk and Hertfordshire. After that, he worked as a Community Education manager in Derbyshire for 13 years. This involved promoting informal and formal learning opportunities and included area management responsibilities and curriculum coordination for languages and humanities. From 2000 – 2003 he was an Education Officer for the British Education Communications and Technology Agency (Becta) in the community programmes team working on UK online centres and Community Grids for Learning.  From 2003 – 2012 he has worked for the National Institute of Adult Continung Education NIACE leading the Institute’s work on Digital Learning. He spent a full year working in France for the voluntary organisation Compagnons Batisseurs and has fluent spoken French. His MEd Research involved case study work of learner experiences in France and the UK and involved conducting research interviews in French. Alastair has been active in promoting open educational practice in post compulsory learning and has published in UK and Germany.


Graham Gibbs

Graham is a reader in social research methods at the University of Huddersfield and National Teaching Fellow and has been teaching for more years than he likes to remember. Over time he has led and developed several courses in the social sciences, been head of department and, for over 15 years, course leader for the MSc Social Research and Evaluation – which he is now steering into an online, distance-learning version. Coming from a mathematics and computing background he has long had an interest in the use of IT in social research and especially qualitative research. He has published two books on this. In the 1990s he got interested in the use of IT in teaching and developed coMentor, an early type of web-based system for teaching online, of the type that later became known as a VLE. He has had a long interest in resource based teaching; originally using paper, books and floppy disks and now predominantly online. He developed the OnlineQDA website to combine his interests in qualitative analysis and resource based teaching. A later project, REQUALLO, added a large number of video, audio and web OERs to this site. He has also worked on several HEA/Jisc funded OER projects including the Climbié project that made a coded version of the transcript of the Victoria Climbié Inquiry available to researchers and teachers. His most recent interest is in video OER and he has his own YouTube channel.

Paul Bacsich

Paul is Senior Consultant (European Projects) at Sero Consulting Ltd. He is project manager for the European Commission project POERUP, Policies for OER Uptake, which is funded until the end of April 2014 and then has two months for writing up the results. He has particular responsibility for the POERUP wiki of country reports and initiatives, and for producing the set of OER policy recommendations for specific EU sectors (HE, etc) and countries. Formerly he was Project Manager for the European Project VISCED (Virtual School and College Education), which ran from 2011 to the end of 2012. His wider interests are developed mainly via his consultancy company Matic Media Ltd. Several impinge on OER since he is interested in models of lower-cost, online, education provision for universities, schools and colleges, and in competence-based qualifications, together with the associated aspects of quality and accreditation. He maintains a particular focus on private providers of online higher education, especially in UK and US. Outside the UK, he has advised universities at a senior level in Sweden, Canada, New Zealand, Thailand and the Gulf States. His earlier interests in benchmarking, quality and change management continue. His Pick&Mix scheme was developed with and for the Higher Education Academy, and used at many higher education institutions in England and Wales during 2005-2011. The scheme was adapted for VISCED and he believes it is of continuing relevance to benchmarking OER uptake.


Haydn Blackey

Haydn Blackey is Head of the University of South Wales’s Centre for Excellence in Learning and Teaching (CELT) which delivers the University’s Learning, Teaching and Assessment strategy, academic staff development, technology enhanced learning and learning through employment. The Centre works with faculties to enhance and reward evidence-based learning, teaching and assessment practice. He is a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and a Trustee of the Association of Learning Technology. Haydn has worked at the University (first at what was then the University of Wales Newport and then at what was the University of Glamorgan) since 1997, where prior to becoming Head of CELT he has held a number of posts including: Head of Innovations in Learning and Teaching, Manager of the Blended Learning project and Associate Director (Academic) of the Glamorgan Business School. Haydn has also been a Principal Lecturer in marketing and operations management, and blended learning curriculum and assessment development. He has been a supporter of OERs since he began to use them in his teaching in 2000, since then he has helped develop the University’s policies of making its resources available via creative commons licences and supporting staff in making use of OERs in their learning and teaching practice. Haydn project managed the institutional adoption of iTunesU, the University being the first institution in Wales to develop an iTunesU presence. Haydn led the University into its relationship with the OERu and continues to be the key link between the OERu network and the institution. Haydn is an active member of the Association of Learning Technology (ALT), having been a Trustee of ALT since 2010 and Treasurer since 2013. In 2013 Haydn will Co-Chair ALT’s annual conference in Nottingham. His research output is in the domains of Scholarship of Learning and Teaching, Embedding Technology in Learning and Teaching, Open Education Resources, Mobile Technology in Learning and Teaching, andSocial Software in Learning and Teaching.

Terese Bird

Terese joined the University of Leicester Institute of Learning Innovation in July 2009 to work on the DUCKLING project, in which she designed a method of transforming text-based learning materials to e-reader-ready learning materials for distance learners, and also implemented podcasts, voice boards, and virtual worlds. Terese also helped launch and teach on the Graduate School Networked Researcher, conducting workshops with postgraduate students about innovations and technologies to facilitate their research and network with others in their field, to equip them as both digital scholars and academics of the future. Among Terese’s current endeavours is Manufacturing Pasts, a JISC-funded project in which artefacts of British industrial history are digitised and mashed-up as open-access learning resources; Places, a JISC-funded project researching the impact of tablet PCs in Leicester’s distance learning programmes; and iTunesUReach which researches iTunes U OER for international student reach. Terese spearheaded the Learning Futures Festival Online 2010, Beyond Distance’s first international academic conference to be held entirely online. In September 2010, Terese was awarded Highly Commended in the Association for Learning Technology Learning Technologist of the Year Individual Award. In November 2010, Terese was named a SCORE Research Fellow to research the use of iTunes U as a distribution channel for open learning material amongst UK universities – the SPIDER project. Terese has worked in Higher Education in the UK and overseas since 1995, and has conducted action research into and implementation of such technologies as automatic lecture capture, audience response systems, and student-created websites and multimedia.  Terese graduated from University of Illinois at Chicago with a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics and Computer Science.


 Joe Wilson

Head of New Ventures, MA(Hons), Dip.Ed, PGCE, MBA. Joe is the Head of the New Ventures Team at the Scottish Qualifications Authority. Joe leads on national policy on SQA’s support for Commonwealth Games, International Articulation, Digital Participation, Adoption of Open Educational Resources and Open Badges and a range of corporate programmes. Joe was previously the HN/SVQ Business Manager responsible for the team of Qualifications Development Specialists looking after all of the vocational awards in Scotland.  In the computing area included building on-going partnerships with all the major global computing vendors through the DIVA project. The project was recognised as global best practice by the World Economic Forum. Joe joined SQA from the Scottish Further Education Unit where he managed a team providing management and consultancy services to Scotland’s Further Education Sector. This involved leading on a number of large budget national projects including planning and devising ICT learning strategies for the Further Education Sector in Scotland.  Prior to this he taught and managed in the Further Education sector in a variety of roles. External Appointments: Non-Executive Director Chair of Learning and Teaching Committee Anniesland College in Glasgow, Non-Executive Director of Glasgow’s Clyde College, Non-Executive Director of Scottish Learning Partnership.  On the advisory Committee of JORUM the UK Open Educational Learning Repository, JISC RSC Scotland and a  Member of publications committee of UK Association of Learning Technology. Organising committee #oer13 , 14 and Alt-C 2014. Joe has a keen interest in educational technology and has served on the JIIE executive of JISC , Executive of the Association of Learning Technology and represented Scotland on the NILTA executive. He has in the past worked on projects with BECTA and a number of UK and overseas agencies in an around learning technology. You can follow him @joecar on twitter.

Anna Comas-Quinn

Anna is Associate Head of Department at the Department of Languages, Faculty of Education and Language Studies at The Open University, UK. She works on developing and delivering language courses, and researches the impact of technology on the learning and teaching of languages at a distance, in particular the challenges to the role and identity of teachers. Anna’s work took her into the field of open education through leading the design and implementation of the discipline-specific LORO repository (http://loro.open.ac.uk) and promoting and embedding its use as part of a Teaching Fellowship with the Support Centre for Open Resources in Education (http://www.open.ac.uk/score/fellows). She has since worked on several projects to integrate open practices in theprofessional development of language teachers (www.performinglanguages.eu), contributed to the planning of the OER13 conference, and authored and edited several OER-themed publications. She believes that engaging in open practices can be a powerful lever to promote professional reflection and growth, and is keen on helping teachers tell their own stories, as seen in her latest publication http://research-publishing.net/publications/2013-beaven-comas-quinn-sawhill/.

Alex Fenlon

Alex is an expert in Open Educational Practice and has been involved in the UK OER programme since its beginning in 2009.  He has worked as a project manager and more recently as the Programme Manager for the Higher Education Academy, working specially on Open Educational Resources, Open Practice and Online Learning.  Alex worked on the ‘OERP pilot’ and the ‘Engineering a Low Carbon Future’ projects at the Engineering Subject Centre and was a consultant for the ‘2012:Learning Legacies’ and ‘Open for Business projects’, as well as being a co-author of the ‘STEM OER Guidance Wiki’.   Alex has recently moved to the University of Birmingham as the Copyright and Licensing Advisor working in the Library supporting academics, students and all library users.

Christa Appleton

Christa is an ELearning Adviser for the JISC Regional Support Centre (RSC), West Midlands, supporting learning providers across the region and helping them to innovate teaching and learning through the use of technology. She previously worked for the Learning, Development and Innovation Department (LDI) at Staffordshire University, originally as the ELearning Models Coordinator; as part of that role managed a global community of practice, which was a fantastic experience, with wonderful contributions from people around the globe. Later she worked for the same department as an Elearning Specialist, staff development and working closely with individual academic and support staff to embed e-learning practice were important aspects of both roles. During her time at Staffordshire University she also worked on Jisc Funded projects including Open Staffs, a round 1 OER project. She has continued to take an interest in OER and the wider “Open” agenda ever since. Her background is in teaching, where she first developed a passion for the use of technology, an opportunity to enhance teaching and learning in the classroom and beyond. She worked in FE for many years, with many different groups of students both in college and out in the community and also with staff, offering CPD sessions related to the use of technology. 

Other committee members include:   

Andy Beggan, Penny Robertson and Steve Stapleton.

Terms of reference

Made up of 15-25 members the OER14 Organising Committee has overall and ultimate responsibility for the success of the conference. It is responsible for appointing and signing off recommendations from working groups. The Organising Committee will have overall responsibility for all financial matters. The Organising Committee ensures that the conference remains true to the principles of this series of conferences. These include (but are not limited to) making the organising committee and the conference as accessible to participation as possible, encouraging open access to conference processes outputs, and promoting the involvement of staff and students. Specific functions include:

  • Finalise the name and themes of the conference and the date and venue
  • Actively promote the conference among personal networks
  • Oversee conference administration, including promotion/marketing, space allocation and layout, managing conference registrations by setting fees and discounts
  • Oversee and co-ordinate the programme including identifying and inviting key speakers and any workshop or special session facilitators
  • Liaise with supporters/exhibitors including setting options and fee levels
  • Co-ordinate conference evaluation and any CPD accreditation
  • Draft abstract submission guidelines and agree the ‘call for submissions’ and associated timetable
  • Establish a network of abstract reviewers and participate in the reviewing process
  • Moderate the recommendations of reviewers
  • Arrange accepted submissions under themes
  • Oversee the publication of any conference ‘proceedings’ or academic outputs
  • Future chairs will initially be invited from committee membership