Dr. Sharon Flynn
Dr Sharon Flynn works with the Irish Universities Association where she is Project Manager for Enhancing Digital Teaching and Learning in Irish Universities, a 3-year project funded through the Higher Education Authority Innovation and Transformation Programme. She works closely with senior academic leaders across the university sector to develop, pilot, review and roll out an ambitious staff development programme to enhance the digital confidence, skills and competences
of those who teach in Irish universities.
Sharon is a successful hybrid academic with more than 23 years of experience working in higher education in Ireland. She is a member of the Board of Trustees for the Association for Learning Technology (ALT) in the UK, and has been an Associate of the National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education. Before joining the IUA she was the Assistant Director at the Centre for Excellence in Learning and Teaching at NUI Galway, where she led a team of learning technologists. She started her academic career as a lecturer in the Discipline of Information Technology at NUI Galway.
Dara Cassidy is Head of Online Education at RCSI, with responsibility for developing and executing RCSI’s digital learning roadmap. Over a 20-year career she has been immersed in the world digital learning, most significantly at Hibernia College, an early leader in blended education in Ireland, where she established and developed the Digital Learning Department, which delivered numerous online and blended education initiatives for EU-funded projects – including the Innovative Medicines Initiative, Pharmatrain and EUPATI projects; philanthropic organisations including the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and commercial enterprises, including HP, Novartis and Pfizer. Most recently, she has been engaged in a number of projects with the National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning including development, along with colleagues from UL and CIT, of the Getting Started with Online Teaching digital badge, and development and delivery of an online CPD course for HE staff to support attainment of the badge.
She recently completed a Doctor of Education (EdD) in Queen’s University, Belfast. Her research interests lie in socio-cultural perspectives on identity and learning, in particular teacher identity; online orientation process and the development of community in online programmes.