Debbie is the Professor of Learning Innovation and Head of the Centre of Excellence in Learning (CEL) at Bournemouth University (BU). Previously a Reader in Education & Technology at Anglia Ruskin University, she is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport; a Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and a National Teaching Fellow.
She is an experienced Unit of Assessment 25 Convenor, undertaking this role at two institutions, as well as contributing her own work to the REF.
Entering academia from industry, she quickly realised that students on her transport courses, with their patterns of shift working, had very limited opportunities to attend regular classes. These difficulties, not unique and indeed shared with other students, led to her research interests in overcoming challenges/barriers faced by students seeking to access learning outside the formal classroom.
By seeking digital solutions to enable learning at a place and time of the learners’ choice, her digital scholarship draws on a sustained body of pedagogic research. Her research exploring how learners interact with their technology has made a significant difference to education, nursing and social work students, when working away from their University base in practice and on professional placements.An experienced biographic narrative researcher, Debbie captures the lived experiences of students, influencing and engaging students and the academic teams supporting them.
Debbie is committed to the use of open educational resources (OERs), and sees the sharing of these resources as making a significant difference in overcoming the educational digital divide through supporting and modelling best practice in availability, accessibility and acceptability. All her digital work is available via creative commons (CC) licensing, enabling free repurpose/reuse for educational purposes. In April 2017 she was re-elected to the ALDinHE National Steering Group, and will focus on developing policy for creating and sharing digital resources internationally. Following a sabbatical working with the EU LearningLayers Project she continues to work with colleagues at the University of West of England (UWE) looking at the affordances of technology for scaling informal learning in the workplace. Debbie is currently exploring the use of augmented reality and immersive worlds for innovative learning in the classroom.