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Policies and Standards Committee - Membership

Dr. Anne Walsh (Chair)

Adjunct Lecturer, NUI Galway

Anne Walsh recently retired as Academic Co-ordinator of Adult Training and Education Studies, Centre of Adult Learning and Professional Development, NUI Galway.  In her role, she had responsibility for a range of blended learning professional development programmes including undergraduate and post-graduate studies in training, further education teaching, adult learning and development and leadership.  Anne is currently Adjunct Lecturer, School of Education, NUI Galway.

Her professional interests include the exploitation of technology in the expansion and enhancement of learning opportunities, and instructional design approaches that reflect excellent national and international standards in the promotion of subject competency and mastery.

Lucien Bollaert

Independent QA expert

Lucien Bollaert was member of the Board of the Accreditation Organisation of the Netherlands and Flanders (NVAO) from 2009 up to 2016. From 2012 to 2016 he was also member of the Board of the European Consortium for Accreditation (ECA). He worked as lecturer, director of a study programme, international officer, quality assurance manager, institutional education & research officer and acting vice-chancellor of the University College of West Flanders. When the college associated with Ghent University in 2003 he became Chairman of the experts’ Commission on Quality Assurance (QA), member of the Commission on Education and of the General Assembly and the Board of that Association.

On Flemish level he used to be member of the Steering Group on QA of the Flemish Council of University Colleges (VLHORA) and the Flemish Education Council (Vlor), and Flemish Bologna expert on quality assurance, quality culture, qualifications frameworks, learning outcomes, competence-based learning and education policy.         

He was member of the E4 group, working out the European Standards and Guidelines on QA (ESG) in 2005 and setting up the European Quality Assurance Register (EQAR), whose register committee he has been Vice-Chair of since then. He was also founder-member of the Steering Committee of the European Quality Assurance Forum (EQAF) for 6 years. The European Commission invited him to be a member of the first experts’ groups on the European Qualifications Frameworks (EQF).

He still is a well-known keynote speaker at several international conferences and the author of the book A Manual for Internal Quality Assurance in Higher Education (Brussels, 2014) as well as numerous peer reviewed articles.

Bryan Fields 

Further Education and Training Consultant.

Bryan Fields has worked in the education and training sector for over 35 years.  Bryan held a number of senior positions in SOLAS, the Further Education and Training Authority including Director of Strategy where he was the architect of the first ever Further Education and Training Strategy 2014-2019 and the first SOLAS Corporate Plan 2014-2016.  He was also Director of the SOLAS Skills and Labour Market Research providing research, data and analysis for the National Skills Council, the Expert Group on Future Skills Needs, SOLAS and the ETB sector and the wider public sector.  As Director of programme evaluation he was responsible for overseeing a series of evaluations of key FET programme lines including the National Post Leaving Certificate (PLC), the National Youthreach programme incorporating community training centres and the Vocational Training Opportunities Scheme.  Before that, Bryan held a number of senior positions in FÁS including Director of training policy and Director of apprenticeship curriculum and assessment development and new programme development. A labour market sociologist by profession and author, he holds a PhD in Sociology and MSc in Training from the University of Leicester.

Barbara Kelly

Director of Qualifications, QQI

Biography to follow

Daire Keogh

Deputy President, Dublin City University

Daire Keogh is Cregan Professor of History and Deputy President of Dublin City University. 
He has served as President of St Patrick’s College Drumcondra since 2012, prior to which he was Senior Lecturer in the College’s History Department.  He has published extensively, on the history of popular politics, religion and education in Ireland.  A former Government of Ireland Senior Research Fellow, he is currently Principal Investigator of an Irish Research Council funded project to publish the extensive correspondence of Cardinal Paul Cullen. 
Daire is a founding member of the European Quality Assurance Register Committee, the body charged by EU Governments with monitoring quality assurance in higher education across the continent.  He is a Chartered Director and is a member of the following Boards: Women for Election; Centre for Cross Border Studies; Edmund Rice Schools Trust; and Dublin City University’s Governing Authority.  He is Chair of the Board of St Patrick’s BNS in Drumcondra and Marley Grange NS in Rathfarnham and a member of the Board of Management of Clongowes Wood College.  He is a member of the Irish Association of the Order of Malta.  He recently completed a term as a Council member of the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment.
Professor Keogh is a graduate of the National University of Ireland, Trinity College, the Gregorian University in Rome and Glasgow University.  He has a strong profile as a historian and an educationalist.  He has lectured widely at universities in Europe, America and Australia.

Bryan Maguire

Director of Quality Assurance, QQI
Bryan Maguire is Director of Quality Assurance at Quality and Qualifications Ireland. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from University College, Dublin and a PhD from the University of California, San Francisco.

Bryan was Director of Academic Affairs of the Higher Education and Training Awards Council up to its amalgamation into QQI in November 2012.

He was Head of School of Creative Technologies at Dún Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design and Technology, where he had earlier been the founding Head of Department of Learning Sciences.

Bryan previously served as lecturer in psychology at Bangor University (Wales), and as development officer for the National Framework of Qualifications with the National Qualifications Authority of Ireland.

He has written and consulted extensively on quality and qualifications frameworks in Ireland and internationally. He is a member of the Hong Kong Council for Academic and Vocational Awards and of the Dental Council of Ireland.

Niamh O’Reilly

Niamh O’Reilly is CEO of AONTAS, the National Adult Learning Organisation, Ireland’s non-governmental membership organisation advocating for the rights of all adults to quality education. Committed to educational equality she leads national advocacy initiatives on behalf of practitioners and learners including the National FET Learner Forum.  With over 15 years’ experience in the lifelong learning field at national level, Niamh’s involvement at European level includes acting as the designated national link with the European Commission for the European Agenda for Adult Learning (EAAL) and she was an elected Board Member of the European Association for the Education of Adults (EAEA) for three terms (2011-2017).  She holds a BSc (Dundee), MSc (TCD), PGDip Stats (TCD), HDES (UCD) and is currently completing a PhD in adult and community education (Maynooth University).

Aileen Ponton

CEO, Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework Partnership
Aileen Ponton is the Chief Executive Officer of the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework Partnership since July 2007.  The Partnership is the body responsible for maintaining the National Framework for Scotland – the SCQF.  In addition, it has responsibility as the National Co-ordination Point for the European Qualifications Framework and for ECVET.  She also chairs the UK Co-ordinating Group for European VET Initiatives.
Aileen is currently a Board member of the Scottish College for Educational Leadership (SCEL) and was a member of the Hong Kong Council for Accreditation of Academic and Vocational Qualifications from 2009 to 2015.
Aileen was Head of Policy Development, Scotland with the Sector Skills Development Agency 2004 to 2007 working with a UK wide organisation coordinating the work of 25 employer led Sector Skills Councils.
Before joining SSDA in 2004, Aileen had worked with the Scottish Qualifications Authority and its predecessor SCOTVEC since 1989 in a range of roles for both the awarding and accreditation functions of SQA.
Aileen’s areas of interest include development of qualifications to suit changing needs, the education – labour market interface, the role of qualification frameworks in supporting educational change/reform, the promotion of parity of esteem and role of lifelong learning.

Further Reading