Discover more about the people that make up our steering and 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 email@example.com for more information.
Silvina Bishopp-Martin has been a Learning Developer at Canterbury Christ Church University since joining the institution in 2012. She is a fellow of the Higher Education Academy and an ALDinHE Certified Leading Practitioner. She has worked on the development of online learning materials, peer-mentoring schemes and embedding academic literacies in academic programmes. She has research experience on academic literacies, critical EAP and Learning Development professionalism and identity.
Dr Carina Buckley
Steering Group Member
Carina joined the Steering Group in 2012 and was Co-Chair 2015 - 2021. 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.
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.
Steering Group Member
Co-Chair of ALDinHE
Paul joined the conference committee in 2017, the Steering Group in 2020 as a representative of Liverpool John Moores University and became ALDinHE Co-Chair in 2021. 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.
Co-Chair of Learn Higher
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.
Ian has been active in ALDinHE since 2015 and a member of the peer mentoring working group since Spring 2020. He set up ALDinHE's research community of practice at the same time, as the first CoP under the peer mentoring group umbrella, and continues to run it. The CoP provides informal peer support, critical friendship etc for research-active learning developers, and has co-authored a journal article, book chapter and several conference presentations around collaboration between learning developers. Ian is in the late stages of a professional doctorate on the framing and value of Learning Development work and also has research interests in feedback on student work and the teaching of reflective writing practices.
Dr Jane McKay
Jane is a learning developer at Glasgow Caledonian University, where she has worked with health and life sciences students since 2008. She is an Advance HE Senior Fellow, an ALDinHE Certified Leading Practitioner and an accredited sport psychologist. She enjoys supporting individuals to reach their potential and has mentored colleagues and contributed to the development of mentoring schemes for learning developers. She joined the ALDinHE Peer Mentoring Group in 2020. In addition to teaching academic literacies, Jane uses her psychology background to embed psychological skills, self-understanding and positive mindset in practice. She has a particular interest in how individual characteristics, most notably perfectionism, influence learning and student wellbeing and she is undertaking research in this area.
Steering Group Member
Co-Chair of the Peer Mentoring Group
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.
Dr Alicja Syska
Steering Group Member
Chair of the Journal of Learning Development in Higher Education Editorial Board
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 Development Advisor at the University of Plymouth where she also teaches in History. Alicja is an Advance HE Senior Fellow and an ALDinHE Certified Leading Practitioner. She 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.