Dear Members of ALT
The ballot process will determine the election of two new Trustees for which 8 candidates are standing for election. Each candidate's full election statement is available from the voting site.
To find out more go to https://www.alt.ac.uk/about-alt/how-we-are-governed .
Candidate 1: Maha Bali
Associate Professor of Practice
Center for Learning and Teaching, American University in Cairo
I have a lot of respect and admiration for ALT - its values and ethos and what they are able to do for the UK with very limited (but excellent!) human resources. I am a big fan of the OER conference particularly and the critical perspective it offers to the open community, and for all the activities ALT does in between, from CMALT certification to things like the OpenEdSIG.
As an Egypt-based educational developer and educator, I offer an international perspective from a country that is less economically privileged and very culturally different, and perhaps if ALT cares to enhance its inclusion and diversity (it's already doing well, especially with OER, but there is always room to improve) I would be able to offer my unique perspective on this, even if the majority of the audience remain within the UK.
As co-director of Virtually Connecting, I offer perspective as someone involved in hosting global conversations in order to enhance access to people who lack the privilege to travel to international conferences. ALT already takes good steps on this front, including livestreaming, having online spaces for engagement at conferences, and hosting VC sessions, to webinars in between. So we share similar values.
Candidate 2: Dr Thomas Cochrane
Academic Advisor and Senior Lecturer in educational technology
Centre for Learning And Teaching, Auckland University of Technology
I have been actively involved with both ASCILITE (since 2004, elected to the Executive 2018) and ALT (since 2010), having been a member of both associations for many years. I am passionate about the Scholarship Of Technology Enhanced Learning, with an extensive body of practice-based research. I was awarded as an ASCILITE Fellow in 2011, and accredited as one of the first Senior CMALT holders internationally by ALT in 2018.
I am currently on the editorial board of the ALT journal – Research in Learning Technology, and an associate editor of ASCILITE’s journal – the Australasian Journal of Educational Technology. I have been a guest special issue/collection editor of both AJET and RLT. I have built strong relationships with the ALT, ASCILITE and IAMLearn international communities and seek to foster collaboration between these complementary communities. One of my responsibilities on the ASCILITE executive is for CMALT accreditation and I am eager to broaden the uptake of CMALT across the international TEL communities, and promote open educational practice and scholarship.
Candidate 3: Dr Sharon Flynn
Project Manager for Enhancing Digital Capacity in Teaching and Learning
I am a successful hybrid academic with 23 years of experience working at NUI Galway, in the west of Ireland. I was a lecturer in Information Technology for 11 years before moving into the role of Assistant Director at the Centre for Excellence in Learning and Teaching.
For the last 13 years I have been in an academic leadership role, directly influencing and improving the quality of teaching at NUI Galway through academic support and development, in particular through my leadership of the learning technologies team in the university. I am passionate about improving the teaching and learning environment so that academic staff can be the very best teachers they can be, thereby improving the learning experience for all our students.
Most recently I have been appointed as Project Manager for Enhancing Digital Capacity in Teaching and Learning in Irish Universities with the Irish Universities Association (IUA), leading an ambitious 3 year project across the seven Irish Universities. There is significant overlap with the activities of ALT and I feel it would be a good time to become more involved.
I believe that I have a lot of expertise to bring to the role of Trustee, but also that I have much to learn that will benefit me in my new role.
Candidate 4: Richard Goodman
Technology Team Manager
I am the Learning Technology Team Manager in IT Services at Loughborough University, having been at Loughborough since 1992, as both student and member of staff. I remember when learning technology and our campus were all just fields.
I have worked on many digital education related projects over the years, including Project ACORN, Learn - Loughborough’s first VLE launched in 1999, MEGS, RAPID, DART, EASIMAP, WFA, CAA, SOCReF and others that didn’t have creative acronyms.
My first ALT C as an attendee was in 1999 and I have been involved with the conference from the “other side” since 2010, when I chaired my first session. In 2012 I was part of the programme committee and one of a number of “web participation co-ordinators”. I have operated in this evolving role ever since, and am now one half of the social media “dream team” with current trustee Lorna Campbell. I am also co-chair of the ALT East Midlands group.
I hope that my many years of experience of involvement with the ALT community will help me to speak for members of the association, and represent their views and opinions to help shape the future of ALT at a very exciting time.
Candidate 5: Rosie Hare
Learning Resources Development Manager
The Northern School of Art
I would bring a distinctive perspective to ALT from working in a small, specialist FE institution; FE often being perceived as a sector that is under-represented in ALT Membership. I am currently a staff governor on the Governing Body at The Northern School of Art, so I have experience of governance and strategic development that I could bring to the ALT Trustee role. My work experience includes a number of library and learning technology roles in both the FE and HE sectors, and I oversee the strategic development of the library and learning technology at my current workplace.
Through the Trustee role, I would amplify the voice the FE sector has within ALT and ensure that strategies and policies are developed with an FE perspective included. I am supportive of the aims of ALT and would help to ensure stronger representation of Learning Technology professionals (and others in related roles) on a national level and help to lead the professionalisation of research and practice in learning technology. I will contribute to the inclusivity of ALT and bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to the Trustee role.
Candidate 6: Natalie Lafferty
Assistant Director LLC and Head of the Centre for Technology & Innovation in Learning
University of Dundee
I'm delighted to be nominated for election as a Trustee of ALT. I've been involved in learning technology for over 17 years, working for much of that time in the Medical School at the University of Dundee in various roles including in distance learning and as a lecturer in eLearning. I moved to a central University role 5 years ago to lead the Centre for Technology and Innovation in Learning, where I’m involved in a range of digital and interdisciplinary education projects, policy development and MOOCs.
A strong advocate of open educational practice I’ve been listed as one of Jisc’s 50 most influential HE professionals using social media. Most recently I’ve been co-organising PressEDConf, an open international conference about the use of WordPress in education and research which runs on Twitter. I’m passionate about working collectively with the learning technology community, particularly in relation to overcoming challenges. As part of the NHS – HE Forum I worked to overcome barriers to accessing learning in NHS locations through developing case studies and sharing best practice. Having been involved in academic, professional service and research learning technology roles and activities I’d bring a wide range of perspectives and experience to ALT.
Candidate 7: Lyshi Soloman
Learning Technology Manager
South Essex College
I am the Learning Technology Manager at South Essex College. I am a SCMALT. I am told I am the only SCMALT in FE awarded in the last pilot. I am passionate about technology for teaching & learning. My goal is to facilitate the development of digital skills of all staff and students so that they have the support to develop the very basic skills required to be confident in using technology in teaching, learning and employability.
I come from a lecturing background in IT, Information Systems and Multimedia, but I believe I have found my true calling when I switched careers to become a Learning Technologist. I have a BSc in Computing & Information Systems and a MSc in Multimedia Technologies. I also have various certifications and qualifications in Project Management, Teaching & Learning and Management & Leadership.
I am passionate about colleges. FE is where I want to grow, and offer my services to. I am keen to develop the awareness of ALT and raise its profile within the FE community as I feel there is a real need for it. I would like to see many more CMALT and SCMALT certifications coming out of FE starting with my own team of Learning Technologists!
Candidate 8: Jonathan Worth
There are any number of colleagues within the ALT community who will make excellent Trustees. I would not bring many of their skills and personal and professional collateral. My background is not as a classic academic, nor a lifelong teacher, certainly not a professional learning technologist. I can offer another perspective though, one that stands in a liminal space between industry and academia. My teaching career owes a great deal to the ALT community without whose support I would not have enjoyed the recognition or successes I have. Foremost because my relationship to technology is one of hacker and techno-novice. With the help of individuals within ALT I’ve been able to turn that weakness into a strength and understand that it is entirely appropriate to make technology fit around the human rather than being limited by the systems and visions of others.
With the help of the ALT community again I’m now setting out on a new journey which sees me founding a start-up to enable other teachers to thrive in open and connected spaces. Spaces wherein they can also develop new relations with partners and communities beyond the academic institution. I think there are fantastic opportunities for ALT to be a very strong voice in this space.