About the project

GMC HQ site hosts our GMCG Projects. Our Steering Group members, from across all our colleges in Greater Manchester, direct and guide the project with a clear focus on improving the quality of digital and blended learning. Our GM Quality Forum also meets half-termly for colleagues to share approaches to quality assurance and quality improvement of digital and blended learning.

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A Greater Manchester Colleges Group project made possible by the Department for Education’s College Collaboration Fund.

GMC HQ is brought to you by:

Barry Atkins – The Manchester College,  Mark Burgoyne – Bolton College,  Roger Clegg – Oldham College,  Nicola Costello – Salford College,  Liz Duncan – Hopwood Hall College,  Adrian Emmerson – Bury College,  Michelle Fletcher – The Manchester College, Teresa Farran – Tameside College,  Claire Foreman – Wigan and Leigh College, Gemma Hawkley-Holt – Trafford College Group,  Becki Lee – Hopwood Hall College, Andrea Murphy – Hopwood Hall College, Jim Parker – Wigan and Leigh College, Kim Sheldon – Tameside College

Our project

Our collaborative “communities of practice” approach is supported by designated Digital and Blended Learning Champions in each partner college, who work with colleagues within their own college and collaboratively across our wider GM community.

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Adrian Emerson

Adrian Emmerson

Digital Learning Manager • Bury College

I’m responsible for all aspects of distance, remote and blended learning across FE and HE curriculum provision. As a digital team, myself and 3 digital learning coaches have been promoting the effective use of Canvas as our main virtual learning environment (LMS), Office 365 as a range of tools to effect impactful teaching, learning and assessment in remote sessions and how blended learning can focus tutors to ensure learners are progressing and achieving on their study programmes. In addition, we have introduced Planet eStream as a fully integrated and interactive media tool designed to enhance teaching, learning and assessment across multiple platforms. We are currently developing resources to help and support staff and students in implementing Planet eStream into their digital toolkit.


James Brabin

James Brabin

Digital and Blended Learning Champion • Wigan & Leigh College

Jonny Evans and I have been working on developing and documenting a comprehensive “top-down” strategy for ensuring large-scale cross-institutional change for transforming the quality of online lessons (although the strategy will work face to face also). We focused on the use of online presentation software “Nearpod”, chosen for its user-friendly interface and transformative abilities for significantly improving the quality of online sessions.  The number of lessons launched from September-January was 70K+. Our project provides a “how to” guide for institutions wishing to replicate the impact.


Alison Magee

Learning Technology Lead and DBLC for Trafford College Group

I have worked in FE for over 30 years and I have a creative design background and initially spent years working with teachers to design learning materials. The last 10 years I have worked in Learning Technology with my key focus to develop and deliver CPD and offer bespoke support to practitioner’s to enrich and enhance their TLA practice with digital technologies.
I joined TCG in 2017 with a strategic role to develop the vision to improve the quality of TLA with a more ‘Blended’ learning approach. We now have our Digital and TLA Strategies and Student Success Framework in place and working together to enrich, enhance and add value to the learner experience, everyday.
I have a Level 5 Teaching and Training Qualification and work closely with curriculum to support and enable the best possible experience for our learners. I support tutors with the implementation of our VLE Platform, Microsoft Class Teams, and the integration of the 365 suite and associated apps to embed essential digital skills relevant for life and the workplace.





Stacey-Ann Foy

Digital and Blended Learning Champion • The Manchester College

My role is the Digital and Blended Learning Champion at The Manchester College. Prior to this role I spent three and a half years as Department Team Leader of English and mathematics for the Business, Computing and Creative Industries department, where I still deliver Functional Skills English sessions weekly.

I received my short M.A. qualification (2018) from the University of Sunderland where I performed action research on the use of flipped learning and EdTech tools to support grammar. I received my English specialism (2017) from the University of Huddersfield, my BA (Hons) in Education and Professional Development (2016) and CertEd (2014) from the University of Huddersfield in conjunction with The Manchester College.

I began my teaching career in 2012 as a tutor of hairdressing before shifting my focus solely to Functional Skills English. Having taught students on study programmes and apprenticeships, I have always had a keen interest in using EdTech to enhance the creativity of sessions.

I am a short-listed nominee for the Educate North Innovation Award 2020 and Keynote speaker for our Assess for Success conference.


Julian Regan

Learning Technologist • The Manchester College

My main role is to support staff from all subject areas with training and troubleshooting in EdTech, as well as to write or adapt materials for blended learning. My background is in English Language teaching, especially teaching academic English and study skills to international students who are preparing to study at British universities. I think that being a language teacher has informed my approach to using EdTech, as I’m most interested in tools, resources or methodologies that maximise student communication and engagement, and which aim to prompt discussions. Another area I’m interested in is promoting student independence and autonomy. Like everyone in the industry, I’m fascinated to see how education is adapting to more and more remote, online or hybrid learning.


Ashley Newall

Head of Quality Assurance •  Salford City College

I am supporting our College’s Digital Learning Strategy and following the completion of Edtech course last year, looking to coordinate and consolidate our approaches to Blended Learning.  In my role as Head of Quality Assurance, I am looking to collaborate with the GM College group and, through supported experiments, coordinate with curriculum staff their critical evaluation of approaches to Blended Learning. In addition, share and promote good Blended Learning practice at Salford City College and within the GM project. I am working with a number of different curriculum teams and staff to review and assess the impact of various tools in curriculum design, delivery, resources and assessment.