We are delighted to announce Dr Matthew Barr, University of Glasgow is joining us as the new Director of Education. Dr Barr (Matt) commenced in post this week taking over from Dr Mark Zarb, Robert Gordon University who stepped down following 2 years in the role.
Matt is well known to SICSA due to his active involvement within our Education Theme over the years and will join the Directorate with a great ongoing vision for the role. He has been involved with events focused on Graduate Apprenticeships and championing the urgency of gender balance in CS Education. Matt initiated and led the organisation of a SICSA supported workshop on Gender Imbalance in Computing Science Education in May 2020 which ultimately resulted in the creation of the Ada Scotland Festival. He has also been involved in supporting his colleagues with other SICSA funded workshops over the years.
Matt has been teaching in Higher Education in some form since 2008, after leaving industry to work as a research systems developer at the University of Glasgow. He has built an expansive network of contacts over the years with colleagues from Skills Development Scotland, Scottish Government/Scottish Funding Council as well as a range of industry partners.
When notified of his appointment to the role as SICSA Director of Education, Matt said “I am delighted to be able to serve as Director of Education for SICSA. It is my intention to use this opportunity to work on improving equality, diversity and inclusion in Computing Science education across Scotland’s universities. I also hope to be able to create mentorship opportunities for colleagues engaged in teaching CS, and help to share the excellent teaching practice that I know goes on across all of our institutions!”
Matt is succeeding in the role by Dr Mark Zarb who has been the SICSA Director of Education for the last two years. The SICSA Directorate would like to extend a huge thank you to Mark for his amazing work with CS Education. Amongst other areas of achievement within the role, Mark has created and strengthened the CS Education community, supported a vast range of education events, and initiated the Educations Champions who produced ongoing webinars on how to adapt to on-line teaching which were a great source of support to our SICSA colleagues throughout the pandemic. Mark’s enthusiasm, positivity and zest for CS Education is admirable and we wish him well in his new role at RGU!