ALDinHE Working Groups

On this page, you can discover more about the people that make up our working groups.

If you are a practitioner in the Learning Development community and would like the opportunity to become actively involved in ALDinHE’s work through a variety of new and established Working Groups, please contact admin@aldinhe.ac.uk for more information.

Practice

Learn Higher

Amanda Pocklington (Chair)

Amanda was co-opted to the Steering Group in 2012 and became chair of Learn Higher in 2013. She has worked in learning development since 2001 and is currently an Academic Skills Adviser and Peer Programmes Manager at the University of Exeter. Amanda is a Senior Fellow of Advance HE and a Certified Leading Practitioner in Learning Development. Her particular interests lie in understanding the processes and impact of group and social learning offered through peer schemes.

Jennie Dettmer

Jennie joined the Learnhigher Working Group in December 2017 and has led the development of accessible document checklists for submitters to use. She has also been a member of the CWG since September 2018. Jennie has extensive teaching experience; she started teaching EFL in Spain, moved onto ESOL, literacy and numeracy teaching in FE colleges and is now a learning developer at the University of Bedfordshire. Her interests are in technology enhanced learning and inclusive teaching practices. She is a qualified dyslexia tutor, a Certified Leading Practitioner of LD, a Fellow of HEA and is completing her MA in Education this year. 

Jodie Calleja

Jodie joined the LHWG in early 2020, with an interest in supporting the WG and wider community with access to high-standard resources, and a commitment to the ALDinHE values. Jodie’s career has taken her from FE teaching to HE engagement roles and now academic development, currently in the role of Learning Development Manager at Canterbury Christ Church University. She has a great interest in harnessing technology in teaching and has recently developed a new open-access platform for her institution, offering engaging asynchronous modules on academic skills and information literacy, targeted by level and faculty. She is a qualified teacher, holds a Masters in Sociology of Education and is currently studying for a PhD Sociology. Jodie is also a Certified Practitioner of Learning Development and Fellow of HEA.

Helena Beeson

Helena Beeson started working as a Learning Development tutor in 2011 at the University of Northampton but has worked in roles across Library and Learning Services for several years before this. Helena joined both the LearnHigher and Conference Working groups in 2019 in order to gain new perspectives on the profession and share her wealth of experience. She is an ALDinHE Certified Practitioner, a Fellow of the HEA with a MA in Modern English and Linguistics. Her current research interests include collaboration with faculty tutors and groupwork.

Jason Truscott (Co-Chair)
David Bevington
Bob Blake
Lynne Gornall
Jessica Hancock
Christopher Little
Julie Lowe

Professional Training

Helen Webster (Co-Chair)

Helen has been a member of the PDWG since 2012, and joined the steering group not long after, becoming co-chair of the PDWG and leading on developing professional development. She is Head of the Writing Development Centre at Newcastle University, and has been working in Learning Development since 2005. A qualified teacher, she is interested in the pedagogy of Learning Development, and blogs about this regularly as @scholastic_rat. She is a Certified Leading Practitioner of LD, a Senior Fellow of the HEA and a National Teaching Fellow.

Peer Mentoring

Sandra Sinfield (Co-Chair)

Sandra Sinfield

Sandra Sinfield SFHEA and CeLP, is Senior Lecturer and University Teaching Fellow in the Centre for Professional and Educational Development at London Metropolitan University, a co-author of Teaching, Learning and Study Skills: a guide for tutors and Essential Study Skills: the complete guide to success at university (4th Edition), and one of the co-founders of the Association for Learning Development in Higher Education (ALDHE). Sandra has worked as a laboratory technician, a freelance copywriter, and an Executive Editor (Medicine Digest, circulation 80,000 doctors). With Tom Burns, she has developed theatre and film in unusual places – their Take Control video won the IVCA gold award for education – and is interested in creativity as emancipatory practice in Higher Education.

Steve Briggs (Co-Chair)

Steve joined the ALDinHE Steering Group in 2014. He has been ALDinHE Co-Chair since 2016. He previously Co-Chaired the Professional Development Working Group, led the development of the CeP and CeLP recognition scheme and helped to launch ALDinHE regional events. Steve is currently Head of Professional and Academic Development at the University of Bedfordshire. He has a PhD, is a Chartered Psychologist and an Advanced HE Principal Fellow.

Professional Recognition

Paul Chin

Paul Chin

Paul joined the conference committee in 2017 and has now joined the Steering Group in 2020 as a representative of Liverpool John Moores University. Paul is a Certified Leading Practitioner in Learning Development and a Principle Fellow of the HEA. His main research interest is peer learning, having completed his PhD in online peer learning and assessment. Paul also has an active interest in developing graduate attributes, promoting employability skills and learning technology – as well as occasionally dabbling in other areas of learning development . As an Associate Member of CIPD Paul is also a keen advocate of promoting personal and professional development.

Steve Briggs

Steve joined the ALDinHE Steering Group in 2014. He has been ALDinHE Co-Chair since 2016. He previously Co-Chaired the Professional Development Working Group, led the development of the CeP and CeLP recognition scheme and helped to launch ALDinHE regional events. Steve is currently Head of Professional and Academic Development at the University of Bedfordshire. He has a PhD, is a Chartered Psychologist and an Advanced HE Principal Fellow.

Kate Coulson

Kate Coulson

Kate has been a member of the Steering Group since 2019. Her background is in corporate/commercial information and worked in the City of London before realising that education is far more interesting! Kate is currently Head of Learning Development at the University of Northampton. She is particularly interested in the impact of Learning Development upon students and is passionate about the importance of LD advocacy to ensure that our work is understood and valued. Kate is an Advance HE Senior Fellow and a Certified Leading Practitioner in Learning Development.

Sheryl Mansfield

Sheryl is a new member and welcomed to the Steering Group in May 2020. She is a Learning Development Tutor at the University of Northampton and is responsible for liaising with the Faculty of Health, Society and Education. She is an Advance HE Fellow, a Certified Practitioner in Learning Development and Qualified Teacher. Her background teaching Sport Science in Further and Higher Education institutions has offered a plethora of experience actively engaging learners. Her research interests include asynchronous resources and inclusive teaching.

Research

Journal of Learning Development in Higher Education

Alicja Syska (Co-Chair)

Dr Alicja Syska

Alicja has been an editor at the Journal of Learning Development in Higher Education since 2018 and a co-lead editor since early 2019. She is a learning developer based at the University of Plymouth and a lecturer in History, with 20 years of teaching experience. She is also an Advance HE Fellow and an ALDinHE Certified Leading Practitioner. Alicja works closely with Arts and Humanities students and uses her hybrid role to promote effective embedding of learning development in subjects. She is particularly interested in the impact of learning development on student understanding and experience of writing within their disciplines.

Christie Pritchard

Christie has been a member of the Steering Group since 2015 and the Co-Chair of Research and Development Working Group since 2018. She is currently the Student Learning Manager at the University of Plymouth and is responsible for leading the Learning Development and Peer Learning service, including their innovative Writing Cafe and well established Peer Assisted Learning Scheme (PALS). She is an Advance HE Senior Fellow, a Certified Leading Practitioner in Learning Development and is currently writing up her Doctorate in Education, focusing on student learning spaces and the Higher Education climate.

Gita Sedghi (Co-Chair)
Andy Hagyard
Christina Howell-Richardson
Eleanor Loughlin
Cathy Malone
Craig Morley

Research Funding

Maria Kukhareva (Co Chair)

Maria Kukhareva

Maria’s expertise spans learning development, education, widening participation, social science and business. She joined ALDinHE in 2015 and has co-chaired the Research and Development Working group since 2016.

Maria is an Advance HE Senior Fellow. Maria holds a Professional Doctorate in Social science, and has taught social science and pedagogy. Her contributions include research into human resilience and innovative interdisciplinary practice. Maria’s current role outside ALDinHE is Head of Organisational Development at the University of Bedfordshire.

Carina Buckley (Co Chair)

Carina Buckley

Carina joined the Steering Group in 2012 and has been Co-Chair since 2015. She came into learning development almost by accident after gaining a PhD in Archaeology in 2006, and is currently Instructional Design Manager at Solent University, responsible for leading on the development of the VLE as a student-centred learning space. Her research interests focus on collaboration and community in LD, and how these impact and are impacted by our professional identities, particularly in terms of emotion and imposter syndrome. She is an Advance HE Principal Fellow and a Certified Leading Practitioner in Learning Development.

Research Development

Christie Pritchard (Co Chair)

Christie has been a member of the Steering Group since 2015 and the Co-Chair of Research and Development Working Group since 2018. She is currently the Student Learning Manager at the University of Plymouth and is responsible for leading the Learning Development and Peer Learning service, including their innovative Writing Cafe and well established Peer Assisted Learning Scheme (PALS). She is an Advance HE Senior Fellow, a Certified Leading Practitioner in Learning Development and is currently writing up her Doctorate in Education, focusing on student learning spaces and the Higher Education climate.

Carina Buckley (Co Chair)

Carina Buckley

Carina joined the Steering Group in 2012 and has been Co-Chair since 2015. She came into learning development almost by accident after gaining a PhD in Archaeology in 2006, and is currently Instructional Design Manager at Solent University, responsible for leading on the development of the VLE as a student-centred learning space. Her research interests focus on collaboration and community in LD, and how these impact and are impacted by our professional identities, particularly in terms of emotion and imposter syndrome. She is an Advance HE Principal Fellow and a Certified Leading Practitioner in Learning Development.

External Relations

Partnerships and Collaborations

Ella Turner (Co Chair)

Ella Turner

Ella has been a member of the Steering Group since 2018. She currently manages a team of Study and Maths Skills Advisers at the University of Chester. Ella has worked in education for ten years in a number of settings. She has worked as a local history tutor in a community setting and as a lecturer and personal tutor in two further education institutions, before moving into higher education as a Learning Developer in 2013. Ella is an Advance HE Senior Fellow and is currently studying for a Doctorate in Education, focusing on how the political culture of higher education shapes the roles and relationships of professional and academic staff.

Conference

Carina Buckley (Co-Chair)

Carina Buckley

Carina joined the Steering Group in 2012 and has been Co-Chair since 2015. She came into learning development almost by accident after gaining a PhD in Archaeology in 2006, and is currently Instructional Design Manager at Solent University, responsible for leading on the development of the VLE as a student-centred learning space. Her research interests focus on collaboration and community in LD, and how these impact and are impacted by our professional identities, particularly in terms of emotion and imposter syndrome. She is an Advance HE Principal Fellow and a Certified Leading Practitioner in Learning Development.

Melanie Crisfield (Co-Chair)

Melanie Crisfield

Melanie joined the conference committee in 2017 and became the co-chair in 2019. She has over 10 years’ experience as a learning developer in both UK and American universities. She currently works as an Academic Skills Adviser at Brunel University London. Her areas of interest in learning development include: understand and developing critical thinking skills; undergraduate and PGT dissertation transition; literature review writing; communities of practice; and building student self-confidence and self-efficacy. She is an ALDinHE certified practitioner and an AdvanceHE fellow.

Kate Coulson

Kate Coulson

Kate has been a member of the Steering Group since 2019. Her background is in corporate/commercial information and worked in the City of London before realising that education is far more interesting! Kate is currently Head of Learning Development at the University of Northampton. She is particularly interested in the impact of Learning Development upon students and is passionate about the importance of LD advocacy to ensure that our work is understood and valued. Kate is an Advance HE Senior Fellow and a Certified Leading Practitioner in Learning Development.

Michelle Reid

Dr Michelle Reid works at Oxford Brookes University as a Learning Development Tutor as part of the Centre for Academic Development. She joined the Conference Committee in 2019 as she really wanted to become more involved in ALDinHE again after a time being away from the network. She is interested in finding a range of ways for people to share their practice, and she helped to organise the LD@3 Summer Programme of online seminars during July-Aug 2020.

Jennie Dettmer

Jennie joined the Learnhigher Working Group in December 2017 and has led the development of accessible document checklists for submitters to use. She has also been a member of the CWG since September 2018. Jennie has extensive teaching experience; she started teaching EFL in Spain, moved onto ESOL, literacy and numeracy teaching in FE colleges and is now a learning developer at the University of Bedfordshire. Her interests are in technology enhanced learning and inclusive teaching practices. She is a qualified dyslexia tutor, a Certified Leading Practitioner of LD, a Fellow of HEA and is completing her MA in Education this year. 

Helena Beeson

Helena Beeson started working as a Learning Development tutor in 2011 at the University of Northampton but has worked in roles across Library and Learning Services for several years before this. Helena joined both the LearnHigher and Conference Working groups in 2019 in order to gain new perspectives on the profession and share her wealth of experience. She is an ALDinHE Certified Practitioner, a Fellow of the HEA with a MA in Modern English and Linguistics. Her current research interests include collaboration with faculty tutors and groupwork.

Steve Rooney

Additional Conference Committee members from the host venue for 2021:

Sheryl Mansfield

Sheryl is a new member and welcomed to the Steering Group in May 2020. She is a Learning Development Tutor at the University of Northampton and is responsible for liaising with the Faculty of Health, Society and Education. She is an Advance HE Fellow, a Certified Practitioner in Learning Development and Qualified Teacher. Her background teaching Sport Science in Further and Higher Education institutions has offered a plethora of experience actively engaging learners. Her research interests include asynchronous resources and inclusive teaching.

Helena Beeson
Kate Swinton

Events

Alistair Morey (Co-Chair)

Alistair joined the steering group member in 2020 as co-lead for Events, after having been previously a member of the LearnHigher, Regional Events and Research Funding working groups. He has worked in learning development for 12 years, following previous higher education roles teaching history and politics and in educational research. He is currently Head of Skills Development at King’s College, London.
His particular focus is on the intersection between learning development and academic/educational development.

Madeleine Mossman (Co-Chair)

Maddy has been a steering group member since 2020. She has coordinated the ALDinHE regional events since 2017. Maddy has worked in higher education for over eighteen years, predominantly in teaching, widening participation and learning development roles. She moved to take up her current position as Learning Services Manager at the University of Leeds in February 2018.
Her particular interests are the pedagogy of academic literacies, particularly academic writing, and the coordination and collaboration opportunities for student support services in large institutions.

Communications Coordination

Jacqui Bartram (Co-Chair)

Jacqui works as an Academic and Library Specialist at the University of Hull and joined the Steering Group in 2019 having previously co-chaired our Communications working group. She is a Certified Leading Practitioner in Learning Development and is currently writing up her doctorate looking at bridges and barriers to developing visual literacy in Higher Education. She is particularly interested in visual ways to communicate and visual expressions of knowledge. As an NVivo Certified Expert, and with her background in ICT Learning, she has developed expertise in helping students get to grips with technology to aid learning and research.

Carina Buckley

Carina Buckley

Carina joined the Steering Group in 2012 and has been Co-Chair since 2015. She came into learning development almost by accident after gaining a PhD in Archaeology in 2006, and is currently Instructional Design Manager at Solent University, responsible for leading on the development of the VLE as a student-centred learning space. Her research interests focus on collaboration and community in LD, and how these impact and are impacted by our professional identities, particularly in terms of emotion and imposter syndrome. She is an Advance HE Principal Fellow and a Certified Leading Practitioner in Learning Development.

Sonia Hood (Co-Chair)
Katie Winter

Explore

ExploreLearn Higher

LearnHigher is a network for promoting and facilitating the development and dissemination of high quality, peer-reviewed resources for learning development in the higher education sector.

Find out more