Featured Speakers at the Virtual #OLForums2022 [Day One]

  • The OpenLearning Forums: Leading the Way in Online Learning will take place virtually on the 2nd (Day One) and 9th (Day Two) of December 2022, from 9:00AM to 2:00PM (AEDT).
  • The forums will kick-off with short insightful presentations followed by a future-focused panel discussion and wrap-up with a hands-on, interactive workshop with valuable practical takeaways.
  • The online forum for Day One features experts from across the education sector including Western Sydney University, Digital Skills Organisation, Australian Technology Network of Universities and more.


The OpenLearning Forums are focused on showcasing best practices, emerging initiatives, case studies, innovative theoretical and conceptual models and frameworks, and forward-thinking strategic approaches in a day committed to moving from theory to action.

We’re pleased to share our featured speakers for Day One on Micro-credentials in Practice, Friday, 2 December 2022, 9:00am - 2:00pm. 

Meet our speakers for Day One:


Prof. Simon Bedford

PVC Learning Futures, Western Sydney University

Prof Simon Bedford


Simon Bedford is Pro Vice-Chancellor Learning Futures, at Western Sydney University where he is responsible for the leadership of strategic educational innovation and collaboration to shape the University's commitment to ensuring its students fulfil their potential to become influential global citizen-scholars in a new technology-enabled world. His portfolio includes, Teaching and Curriculum, Technology Enable learning, Placements, Mathematics Education Support (MESH) and Sustainability Education (SDG’s). 

At Western, his contribution to teaching and curriculum is evidenced through his leadership of the university strategic 21st Century Project (Teaching, Curriculum and Digital Transformation), the creation of a new curriculum design and approvals policy, better learning analytics data for the review of teaching, improved awards/recognition programs, and the collaborative delivery of original staff development programs to support the design and implementation of that curriculum within our technology enabled learning environments. 

As a researcher in the field of higher education, Simon currently supervises HDR students all drawing on a range of conceptual frameworks, methodologies and methods in the areas of learning analytics, assessment literacy, and digital transformation (Dx). He has helped to drive several national projects including Institutional External Referencing of Assessment Standards (ERoS), OLT Inter-institutional collaboration through delivering formative assessment, and OLT Assessing Assessments against threshold learning outcomes, and is co-leader of a CAULLT micro-credentialing project within the IRU universities and Technology Enabled Mentoring Projects.

Simon is an award-winning teacher, having been recognised for his achievements with three Vice Chancellor Outstanding contributions to learning and teaching awards, and an Australian Awards for University teaching (AAUT) award. He is a leader of the Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia (HERDSA) assessment group and is president of the Council of Australasian University Leaders in Learning and Teaching (CAULLT).


Dr Geethani Nair

Chief Innovation Officer, Digital Skills Organisation

Dr Geethani Nair


Dr. Geethani Nair is the "Chief Innovation Officer" at Digital Skills Organisation (DSO). Before joining the DSO, Dr. Nair had over two decades of professional experience in leadership, education, technology, and training at TAFE NSW. In her former position as Head of Technology and Business Services SkillsPoint at TAFE NSW, she oversaw broad and complex work projects in partnership with the Technology and Business Services industries.

She has had the opportunity to impact both local communities and national & international audiences as a trusted advisor in vocational education and training, formulating innovative pedagogical models and, empowering teachers to advance to the next level, and building solid bridges between the business world and training providers to match skills provision to the needs of businesses. She oversaw training provision in various sectors, including electrotechnology, telecommunications, computer technology, the built environment, primary industries, and service industries.

Her formal credentials vary from education to technology. She has a doctorate in education from the University of Technology, a master's degree in information technology from Monash University, a graduate diploma in vocational education and training from the University of Technology, and a bachelor's degree in civil engineering from the University of Moratuwa Sri Lanka.

Her current work at DSO focuses on digital skills innovation by providing agile and effective methods for the Australian workforce to acquire digital skills. 


Cherie Diaz

Executive Director, Education Innovation, Western Sydney University

Cherie Diaz


Cherie Diaz is the Executive Director, Education Innovation at Western Sydney University. Prior to this, Cherie was the Managing Director, Australia at OpenLearning. Cherie has also served as Head of Education Delivery at the Australian Institute of Company Directors, and Director of Customer Success at Scientia (Ivy Colleges). Cherie has held many pivotal roles, including, National Head of Academy and Head of College/ Registered CEO at Study Group Australia, Learning and Design Specialist at Staples Australia, and Training Consultant at Ernst & Young. Cherie holds a Bachelor of Teaching/ Bachelor of Arts from Australian Catholic University, a Master of Arts (History) from Macquarie University, and a Master of Arts (Education) from University Technology Sydney.

Armed with over 15 years of experience, Cherie is dedicated to building experiences that put the learner at the centre of the design and delivery process. She is a lifelong learner who is passionate about empowering educators and learners worldwide through technology.

Sophi Bruce

Programs Advisor, Australian Technology Network of Universities (ATN)

Sophi Bruce


Sophi Bruce has extensive teaching and learning experience working with people and organisations specialising in program design and delivery, professional skills capability uplift, leadership development and collaborative working.

Sophi is Programs Advisor to the ATN and has managed the ‘concept to operations’ phase of the ATN’s Frontiers program which has included extensive consultation with OpenLearning as the Frontiers learning platform. She is a Director with Adaptive Leadership Australia’s learning programs and teaches a range of virtual workshops as senior faculty with The School of Life.  Sophi is an industry fellow with the Institute for Public Policy and Governance at UTS where for a decade she held strategic responsibility for a suite of programs and subjects (both online and face to face) committed to building leadership capability across the public sector.  

Sophi holds a Masters in Communication and a BA in English, certificates in Positive Psychology Coaching and is an assessor of the Leadership Development Framework.


Adam Agostino

Programs Manager, Australian Technology Network of Universities (ATN)

Adam Agostino


Adam Agostino is an experienced Higher Education senior manager. He has worked in a variety of professional and managerial roles across the sector in leading international institutions, in both the United Kingdom and Australia. 

Adam has an extensive background managing academic programs, most notably at King’s College London. Whilst at King’s, he was responsible for managing an expansive suite of academic programs and leading a large team of program administration staff in King’s Business School.

Adam’s current role as Senior Manager, Academic Programs at Australian Technology Network of Universities (ATN) involves developing, managing and leading the ATN Frontiers program – both strategically and operationally – in collaboration with senior academic stakeholders.


Jenny Pesina

Senior Educational Designer, Deakin University

Jenny Pesina


Jenny has close to 20 years in educational design and leadership experience in higher education and the industry. She holds a Bachelor of Design from Swinburne University of Technology, and a Master of Education (Research) from the University of Sydney. In her professional career, Jenny has led learning design teams and facilitated stakeholder engagement on a wide range of projects locally and internationally. She has also been involved in all aspects of educational design and development. Jenny is currently working at Deakin University, leading design and development of a range of postgraduate courses with a global focus, utilising a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) platform FutureLearn.

Jenny’s most recent research explored sociomaterial practices of education design teams. She has also researched educational technology implementations in higher education in the UK and Ireland and was part of the central team on the Australian Government Department of Education project “Reconceptualising Maths and Science Teacher Education Programs”. She has published in the field of online learning and educational innovation, and frequently presents at various events. 


Beverley Miles

Senior Learning Designer, OpenLearning

Beverley Miles


Beverley is a Senior Learning Designer at OpenLearning with almost two decades of experience in higher education and recognition from the Australian Learning and Teaching Council, NSW Humanitarian Award in Education, and LearnX. She is an advocate for critical digital pedagogy, design justice, and widening participation – always asking ‘do you need to create it… or could you curate, co-create, or crowdsource it!?’

With a systems thinking mindset, Beverley has led rapid design programs in every discipline you can think of (from archaeology to aerospace engineering). She enjoys the challenge of shaping complex learning ecosystems from the macro (qualification, micro-credential, assessment) to the micro (learning journey, experience, activity, and interactions) with a pedagogy of care approach. Beverley is passionate about learner-generated digital media and encourages both facilitators and learners to create video, audio, infographic, and hypermedia artefacts through her online course.


Join our free, two-day virtual forums. Registrations are open. For the full agenda, please visit our website below:


Topics: Updates

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