Rethink Learning Design


Michelle Harrison is a Senior Instructional Designer and Assistant Professor at Thompson Rivers University—Open Learning and is the past Chair of the Learning Design and Innovation department. Her research interests lie in learning design, open educational practices, and designing learning spaces with emerging educational technologies. She has a PhD in e-Research and Technology Enhanced Learning from Lancaster University in the UK, where she focused on exploring how we perceive and use space in networked learning environments.

Irwin DeVries PhD

Irwin DeVries is interested open educational practices and distance learning in professional and higher education. He currently teaches in the masters program in learning and technology at Royal Roads University. He has a PhD in Curriculum Theory and Implementation (Simon Fraser University) and previously worked at the Justice Institute of BC and Thompson Rivers University, Open Learning. He/him


Michael Paskevicius is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at the University of Victoria. His research focuses on learning design practices, the development of digital literacies, and supporting personal knowledge management. As an advocate for openness in education, he is keenly interested in the integration of open source tools, open educational resources, and the development of open educational practices in teaching and learning.


Alyssa White is a Masters of Arts candidate majoring in Anthropology at the University of Lethbridge. Her thesis focuses on the conceptualization of legitimate knowledge in postsecondary education, and how open pedagogy and open educational resources can be utilized in course design to address concerns around accessibility, inclusivity, and decolonization in academia.

I am an experienced educator interested in open education and social justice framed under a critical pedagogy approach. I work as a senior lecturer in the school of education at Bath Spa University. I hold a PhD in educational technology where I explored the lack of students’ reflexive engagement with open and participatory tools at university, which opened my eyes to the dangers of overenthusiastic approaches to technology. My research interest lies at the intersection of education, technology, society, and power. I am particularly interested in issues of data justice and data capability in rural contexts, as well as issues concerning digital inequality. In my current research, I explore how technology can be meaningfully integrated into development contexts so that different ways of knowing and beings are respected and included.

Chad Flinn is currently the Dean of the  School of Trades & Technology at Medicine Hat College.

Previous to serving as Medicine Hat College’s Dean of Trades and Technology, Chad was a Learning Technology Trainer at Saskatchewan Polytechnic and had taught as an electrical instructor at the British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) since 2009.

Before entering education, he worked in the private sector as an operational manager of an electrical/instrumentation contracting firm in Fort McMurray.

Chad has a strong interest in research and Trades vocational education and training (TVET).  His Master’s thesis focused on the experience of trades students in using and co-creating open educational resources.  He recently co-authored a paper on Strengthening Digital Teaching & Learning Pedagogies for Trades, Vocational, Education, and Training Practitioners. Chad is also researching using the Bichronous model for teaching trades in a blended format.

 Chad has also recently begun his journey towards a Doctorate in Education with a focus on higher education leadership at Western University, holds a Master of Arts (Learning and Technology) from Royal Roads University, completed the Provincial Instructor Diploma Program at Vancouver Community College, and is a red seal endorsed journeyperson electrician having completed apprenticeship training at BCIT.

Chrissi (@chrissinerantzi) is an Associate Professor in Education in the School of Education at the University of Leeds in the United Kingdom. She teaches on Education Programmes and leads on microcredentials within the School, is a Senior Lead of the Knowledge Equity Network and leads the institutional review of the institutional Discovery Programme. 

She is a National Teaching Fellow 2015 and a Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, the Learning Technologist of the Year 2017, received the GO-GN Best Open Research Practice Award 2018, the OEGlobal Open Innovation Award 2021 and the Collaborative Award for Teaching Excellence in 2022 by Advance HE. 

Her research interests include, creativity, open education, cross-boundary collaborative learning, networks and communities. Chrissi has initiated with many others a range of open professional development initiatives that have been sustained over the years and bring educators, students and the wider public together. The open and award-winning Creativity for Learning in HE community (#creativeHE) she founded is such an example.

Dani Dilkes is currently an Instructional Designer supporting the development of online programs in the Faculty of Health Sciences at Western University. She is also a PhD student at the University of Toronto, researching digital pedagogy and inclusive praxis in higher education. Dani is a perpetual student, a sometimes writer, and a novice photographer. She has three cats that keep her entertained and often grace her twitter feed @danielledilkes. Fortunately, she thrives on chaos, and they do not disappoint.

Dave works as the Program Manager, Faculty Development at the Centre for Teaching, Learning and Innovation at the Justice Institute of British Columbia where his work involves collaborating with faculty to strengthen the connection between teaching and learning.

Dave has been an instructional designer and teacher in a variety of capacities, both in B.C. and abroad, for almost 30 years. He has taught several different courses, including those in the Diploma of Adult Education in the Department of Educational Studies at the University of British Columbia and is a co-author with his friend and mentor Dan Pratt of the book Five Perspectives on Teaching: Mapping a Plurality of the Good. He holds a Master of Adult Education from the University of British Columbia and a Master of Classical Studies from the University of Victoria, and his recent lifelong learning pursuits include leadership studies, creative thinking, podcasting and building musical instruments.

Harriet is Dean of Learning and Teaching and Reader (Associate Professor) of Higher Education at the University of Portsmouth. She is both a National Teaching Fellow (NTF) and Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (PFHEA). As Dean of Learning and Teaching, Harriet is responsible for providing leadership in the enhancement and evaluation of the student experience. She champions the student voice, and facilitates partnership working, ensuring student engagement is central to the University’s activities. She led the revision of the Curriculum Framework including embedding the Hallmarks of the Portsmouth Graduate within the curriculum. Other projects include co-creating frameworks and policies such as Personal Tutoring and Content Capture.

Helen DeWaard works with the Faculty of Education, Lakehead University, Orillia. She holds a Masters of Educational Technology from the University of British Columbia, a Masters of Education from the University of Toronto, OISE, and is a PhD candidate. Her dissertation focuses on media and digital literacies in faculties of education. She can be found at Helen tweets about education related topics ( @hj_dewaard) and blogs at Five Flames for Learning Attribution for the image is CC BY Sebastiaan Ter Burg

“I am a self-proclaimed challenge-chaser. My workday is never dull as an Instructional Designer at CTLI designing online courses, creating customized training programs, and playing with multimedia tools.

One of the things I really love about the work I do is that I’m frequently faced with new challenges when working on projects, and with an awesome team to lean on, I’m able to come up with creative ways to problem solve and learn from each experience!

I completed my MA in Instructional Technology & Media from Columbia University Teachers College and I am proud of my multicultural roots as a Taiwanese-Canadian. “

Junsong is currently the Program Manager, Simulations at the Centre for Teaching, Learning and Innovation at the Justice Institute of British Columbia. He is experienced in designing blended and online courses, developing gamified simulations with emerging technology, and consulting with stakeholders on technology and design. He also co-authored Comprehensive Guide to Applying Universal Design for Learning. Junsong holds a Master of Education from the University of British Columbia and a Master of Digital Media from the Center for Digital Media. He is passionate about transforming learning experiences with digital technology, delivering user-centred products and solutions, fostering personal and professional development, and improving team collaboration and performance in complex environments.

Karen is Professor and Head of Learning and Teaching at Solent University and is responsible for overseeing the Solent Learning and Teaching Institute’s mission to enhance the quality of teaching practice and learning support across the institution. Karen has over 15 years’ experience in higher education, is a National Teaching Fellow (NTF), Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (PFHEA) and Fellow of the Leadership Foundation (FLF). Karen’s expertise lies in providing strategic, co-ordinated leadership and collaborative support for a portfolio of curriculum and academic development activities and the strategic implementation of organisational strategy in higher education institutions.

” My OER journey began in 2015 with a contribution to a physical geology textbook. I adapted my own version of that book, and it is now in its sixth iteration, Physical Geology – H5P Edition V1.1, which includes interactive H5P activities. I’ve also worked on numerous OER lab manuals, including Laboratory Manual for Earth Science, which contains substantial contributions from graduate and undergraduate teaching assistants at UBC Okanagan who collaborated to build interactive content. My teaching experience has been a specialization in online instruction, and I have relied heavily on OER materials and UX design principles to create free and accessible online learning materials for anyone who is interested in using them to learn more about our planet. I currently work as a technical editor at an engineering consulting firm. “

Kirsten trained as a Diagnostic Radiographer at the University of Exeter. Throughout her clinical career, she specialised in CT and MRI and has undertaken postgraduate study in Forensic Radiography, Paediatric Imaging, Radiotherapy Physics, Imaging in Medicine, and Further Materials in Medical Physics. In March 2020 Kirsten became the interim Associate Dean (Students) for the Faculty of Science and Health and was appointed Associate Dean (Students) in January 2021. Her main responsibilities are related to overseeing the quality of student experience across the Faculty, from the pre-application stage to graduation and beyond.

” I joined JIBC in 2009 – starting in Fire, then working on the JI website 2.0, then headed back to Fire and then landed in CTLI where I’m now an instructional designer. I graduated in 2015 from the SFU MEd in Ed Tech and Learning Design and my BA is from KPU. Starting in 2018, I was away from the team for 4 years on secondment to BCcampus to work on open education projects. “

Kristine Dreaver-Charles is a member of the Mistawasis Nēhiyawak Nation and PhD candidate in the College of Education at the University of Saskatchewan. She works as an instructional designer in the Distance Education Unit at the University of Saskatchewan.
Twitter: @kdreavercharles

Leo is a digital and open education specialist and researcher, a Programme Development Advisor at University College London, and a doctoral researcher at the Open University of the UK. He studied at the University of Waikato, New Zealand, where he worked for several years as a tutor, as well as later at the University of South Australia, before moving to the UK and working in industry, library and digital education roles. Leo’s research focuses on open and digital education practices and policies. Leo is a Fellow of CODE, the Centre for Online and Distance Education at the University of London, and a co-ordinator of the London-based ALT M25 Learning Technology Group. He is @leohavemann

Lynn is an Instructional Designer in the Centre for Teaching, Learning & Innovation at the Justice Institute of British Columbia. She has a Master of Education (M.Ed) in Curriculum and Pedagogy focusing on Digital Technology from U of T. Lynn fosters innovation through the design and integration of technologies and learning spaces to enrich teaching and learning.

Dr Panagiota (Melita) Sidiropoulou is a Senior Research Associate at the Department for Curriculum and Quality Enhancement of the University of Portsmouth. She is involved in a variety of student experience surveys and projects, and she is the project lead on a programme called TESTA (Transforming the Experience of Students through Assessment), an academic and curriculum development programme at the same university. Melita is the main RA for the Differening Perceptions of Quality of Learning project.

Dr. Michael Cottrell is originally from County Cork, Ireland. He is an associate professor and Graduate Chair of Educational Administration in the College of Education at the University of Saskatchewan. Dr Cottrell’s research and teaching areas include Indigenous-Newcomer relations, Indigenous education, international and comparative education, and educational leadership.

Mohammed is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Civil Engineering and Surveying, and Course Leader for the MEng and BEng (Hons) Civil Engineering. He is also a Chartered Civil Engineer having previously spent more than eight years in the UK Civil Engineering industry working as an engineer and project manager on various projects here in the UK and overseas.

Priya Sharma is an Associate Professor in the Learning, Design, and Technology program at The Pennsylvania State University. Her research focuses on developing and using emerging technologies for teaching and learning in formal and informal contexts. Current projects include the design of learning analytics dashboards to support teaching, exploring participation and interaction within online formal and informal spaces, and the translation of concepts of place and in the design of online learning.

Professor Raheel Nawaz, Pro Vice Chancellor (Digital Transformation) at Staffordshire University, is an international thought leader in Digital Education and industry-academia co-design. He is among the most cited scholars worldwide in Applied AI and Educational Data Science. His work has resulted in outstanding student achievement across three continents.

Robert is the Director of the Centre for Teaching, Learning & Innovation at the Justice Institute of British Columbia. He has more than 35 years of experience in the design and development of technology-based adult education. Robert has been honoured with over 20 national and international awards for digital educational media programming. He specializes in the design and delivery of simulation-based training which has included the 2010 Olympics emergency exercise training program.

Robert is responsible for Praxis, a unique web-based, simulation-learning environment that was recognized by the Canadian Network for Innovation in Education. He has an associate degree in educational media technologies from Capilano University and a master’s in disaster and emergency management from Royal Roads University. He is a graduate of the Master Exercise Practitioner Program from Public Safety Canada in collaboration with the US Federal Emergency Management Agency and is a recognized forensic video expert through training received at the FBI Academy at Quantico.

Dr. Ron Bowles is Dean, Office of Applied Research & Graduate Studies (OARGS) at Justice Institute of British Columbia. Ron has practiced in-the-field, taught, developed curriculum and conducted research in a variety of public safety fields in Canada and Asia. He worked in the fire service and search and rescue before becoming a paramedic in the early 1980s. Since 1992, his roles at JIBC have included instruction, educational administration, leading a curriculum development group, Associate Dean for the Centre for Applied Research, and Director of Academic Affairs. His current role as Dean for OARGS involves oversight for JIBC’s Centre for Teaching, Learning and Innovation; the Centre for Research, Innovation and Scholarship; and the Centre for Graduate and Liberal Studies.

Ron has worked extensively in the development of simulation and applied learning approaches in multiple formats, including live simulation, multimedia and online, and high fidelity simulation (HFS). His graduate work explored the use of HFS for the development of clinical judgment and expertise for paramedic learners. Dr. Bowles has a B.Ed. (adult education) from the University of Alberta, a Master of Educational Technology and a PhD (curriculum studies), both from the University of British Columbia.

Sarah Speight is Professor of Higher Education and the University of Nottingham’s Pro-Vice Chancellor for Education and Student Experiences. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, and both a National Teaching Fellow (2013) and Principal Fellow (2014) of Advance HE . Sarah is the recipient of a University of Nottingham Lord Dearing Award for excellence in learning and teaching (2006) and a Lord Dearing Fellowship (2011). From 2010 to 2017 she was Academic Director of the Nottingham Advantage Award, the University’s initiative to support Undergraduate students develop their life and work skills (

Stephen is a Mulitmedia Instructional Designer and Producer with over 20 years of experience. He specializes in the development of training solutions that include eLearning, blended learning models and web-based instruction. He is highly trained in instructional design, 2D/3D, live video, motion graphics, multimedia, and VR. He combines these skillsets to create short, engaging, high impact training and media for training courses.

Stephen has worked extensively with government agencies, private sector employers and post-secondary institutions. He has received training at the University of Dalhousie, University of Calgary and British Columbia Institute of Technology. He is also a Transport Canada certified Drone Pilot.

Dr. Tanya Elias is a highly experienced researcher and practitioner in learning and development. With proven success leading learning, change and organizational development projects, Tanya uses her communication and problem solving skills to foster collaboration and maintain a healthy team climate. As an innovative strategist who has successfully managed major projects that have improved organisations’ performance by developing and implementing innovative data-supported initiative, Tanya applies her knowledge and experience of learning and change management processes proven by results obtained, awards and publications.

Dr. Verena Roberts is a passionate online and blended K-12 educator, an learning designer and consultant who completed her EdD in Learning Sciences with a focus on K-12 Open Educational Practices with the Werklund School of Education, University of Calgary. She is Educational Developer, Office of Teaching and Learning, Concordia University (Edmonton), and in addition, Adjunct Assistant Professor with the Werklund School of Education, University of Calgary. Recently, she helped to design the Zero Textbook Cost (ZTC) Associate Science undergraduate degree as an Instructional Designer with Thompson Rivers University and completed a #GO-GN Open Podcast Fellowship. To learn more about Verena check out her ePortfolio: or find her as @verenanz on Twitter.


Born and raised in St.Albert, AB within Treaty 6 territory, Kirsten is now in the Bachelor of Arts Communications program at TRU finishing in 2024. Her areas of passion within communication are accessibility, inclusion, and honesty.

Kirsten has a General Management Diploma from Camosun College in Victoria, BC. In addition to her contract work with Rethink Learning Design, she is also an SRA at TRU Makerspace, a Student Teaching Assistant in the Communications and Visual Arts department, VP of the TRUSU Swing Dance Club, and previously a volunteer with the Knowledge Makers Journal.

Nicole is a Graphic Designer for Thompson Rivers University Open Learning. She specializes in the intersection between educational technology and illustration with a focus on applying visual design within an online pedagogical context. You can learn more about Nicole at

Tom is passionate about the intersection of education technology. He has spent the last twenty years focused on blending constructivism and technology in K12 and higher education. His interests are varied and include multimedia creation, data visualization, history, APIs, poetry, WordPress, and photography.