I am the Associate Dean (Online Learning) in the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences. I am based in the School of Social Work and Social Policy where I have the role of Director of Learning and Teaching. I am Course Leader on the MSc in Child and Youth Care Studies by Distance Learning, a part time programme aimed at child and youth care practitioners around the world and recognised by the Child and Youth Care Accreditation Board of Canada. I also teach on the MSc in Advanced Residential Child Care and the BA (Hons) Social Work. My teaching and research interests centre around online and distance learning, child and youth care, residential child care, social work, and leadership and management.
I have a particular interest in online and distance learning. In addition to my role with the MSc in Child and Youth Care Studies by Distance Learning I am the Lead Educator on the University of Strathclyde Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) Caring for Vulnerable Children. This 6 week course ran for the first time in 2015 and has so far recorded more than 95,000 registered participants. As Associate Dean (Online Learning) in the HASS Faculty I chair HASS Online and play a central role in the management of our Faculty approach to online and distance learning and the development of our portfolio of distance learning programmes.
I am a member of Strathlcyde Online and the University Learning Analytics Board, two bodies central to the development of University strategy around online and distance learning.
I have also been heavily involved in the development work around new qualifications for the residential child care sector in Scotland and was a member of the Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC) Strategic Group which developed the Standard for Residential Child Care in Scotland. I was also involved in the SSSC Review of Social Work Education and led the inquiry group which produced the research report on Community Development and Engagement.
I have a lead role in the annual Summer School involving our School of Social Work and Social Policy and the Silver School of Social Work at New York University. Eastablished in 2017, this involves bi-annual visits to each institution with groups of post and undergraduate Social Work and Social Policy students.
I have been with the University of Strathclyde since 2003, prior to this I worked as a practitioner and manager in residential child care services in Edinburgh.