The Team

The award winning OER Research Hub project team has been carefully selected to ensure the successful delivery of the projects aims.  It blends the academic and research expertise needed to undertake and deliver the research findings, with that of robust and professional project delivery. The team currently consists of seven individuals.

Patrick McAndrew is Director of the Institute of Educational Technology and Professor of Open Education. He was the Co-Director of OLnet ( and led the Bridge to Success project ( which used OER to help students cope with starting in the US Community College system. Patrick has a first degree in Mathematics from University of Oxford and a PhD in Computer Science from Heriot-Watt University. His research interests are the design of learning experiences with a focus on the impact of openness. He has been researching OER projects since the launch of OpenLearn in 2006. He has contributed to commissioned reports for UNESCO, OECD and JISC as part of more than 100 book chapters, journal and conference papers, and published reports. He is the Principal Investigator and Director for the project.

Martin Weller is Professor of Educational Technology in IET with extensive experience in innovation in teaching as the chair of the OU’s first massively online course (attracting 12,000 registered students in 2000). In May 2014 Martin was awarded an International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE) Chair in OER. His research area is digital scholarship and his recent book, The Digital Scholar was published in open access and in print/eBook form by Bloomsbury Academic under a Creative Commons license. This book includes chapters exploring the meaning of openness and also looks at open access publishing. Martin is editor of the open access Journal of Interactive Multimedia in Education (JIME) and blogs at He was part of the team that secured funding for the OpenLearn project, and has written extensively on open education and open access. He was Principal Investigator on the EU-funded Sidecap project, which addressed uptake of OER in Pacific-Asian countries and FLOSScom, an EU-funded project looking at open source models of education and on the UK JISC-funded SLeD project to developing an open source learning design player. As co-Investigator he has particular responsibility for setting the research methodology and leading the research team within the project.

Robert Farrow BA (Hons), MA, PhD, Pg.CHEP, is a philosopher, interdisciplinay researcher and educational technologist who has compiled, analysed and disseminated a wide range of research into open educational resources and open learning.  In addition to carrying out internal research for The Open University, he has contributed to a number of externally funded educational technology projects including MOTILL, EU4ALL and OLnet.  Rob is Associate Editor for the Journal of Interactive Multimedia in Education (JiME).  In addition to his own research and editorial work, he acts as referee for a number of academic journals, including International Education Studies, British Journal of Educational Technology, Journal of Online Teaching and Learning, Journal of University Teaching & Learning Practice and Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy .  He blogs at openmind.ed & other places and can be found on Twitter as philosopher1978.

Beck Pitt BA (Hons), MA, PhD, is a Research Assistant on the OER Research Hub project. Beck joined the OU in June 2011 and supported the NGLC funded Bridge to Success project for its duration. Previously, she worked on the 2.5 year, EC funded FP7 project CESSDA PPP at the University of Essex. Beck is a trained philosopher and a committee member of the UK Sartre Society.

Beatriz de los Arcos BA, MSc, PhD is a Research Associate on the OER Research Hub project. She joined the Open University in 2000 as an Associate Lecturer at the Department of Languages. With a research profile in the area of computer-assisted language learning, she has contributed to the LORO project, an online repository of language teaching materials available to download and reuse.  She has also worked on the SCORE Microsites project, responsible for gathering content to create two collections of open educational resources for research students and digital scholars.  More recently she has been involved in running and evaluating OT12, a MOOC in Open Translation Tools and Practices.

Gary Elliott-Cirigottis BA (Hons), MA (RCA), Cert, Dip, MSP Practitioner is the Business Improvement and Programme Manager for the Institute of Educational Technology at the OU with a specific remit for overseeing the delivery of strategic objectives through its Portfolio and Programme Structure.  Gary has 19 years experience in Higher Education project management and international partnership management.  He has been a PRINCE2 Practitioner for 10 years and MSP (Managing Success Programmes) Practitioner for 6 years.

Natalie Eggleston Natalie joined the OER Research Hub project in February 2014. Natalie is our Project Administrator and has extensive experience of supporting projects, including OLnet and JuxtaLearn.

Previous team members:

Simone Arthur (Fellowships and Collaborations Manager)
Patrina Law (Programme Manager)
Dr Leigh-Anne Perryman (Research Associate)
Claire Walker (Project Manager)

This page was last updated on 12 February 2015 

5 thoughts on “The Team

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