The team

David Balch – Senior Web Developer
David Balch

David's work is centered on TALL’s XML based development process and the Moodle and Drupal platforms. Using technology including PHP, HTML5, XML, and XSLT, David develops, maintains, and operates software tools for research and production of TALL’s web properties and high quality online learning materials.

David has a Bsc (Hons) in Food Marketing Management from Sheffield Hallam University. After university he spent two years with a commercial Internet firm, before joining TALL in early 2002.

Currently, most of David's spare time is consumed by playing the drums in a couple of bands, and trying to learn enough electronics to build electronic instruments and light-based artwork.

Tom Box – Project Officer
Tom Box

Tom joined TALL in March 2005 but since 2008 has been working in the Project Officer role. As such he is responsible for overseeing the development and delivery of a number of TALL's online courses and managing the procedure for requesting to use copyrighted material from third parties.

Tom has a degree in Earth Sciences and a PGCE qualification in General Primary, both obtained from Oxford Brookes University. Before joining TALL, he worked on an online export, sales lead system for the Department of Trade and Industry.

Sue Dale – Administration and Project Assistant
Sue Dale

Sue joined TALL in April 2009 where her role is to ensure the smooth running of the office, provide administrative support for the team and contribute in a variety of ways to TALL’s course development and course delivery activities.

Sue has a degree in modern languages from Oxford University and is a qualified librarian. Before joining TALL, she worked for a number of years as a library manager in further education.

Sean Faughnan – Director of TALL
Sean Faughnan

Sean joined the Department for Continuing Education at the University of Oxford in 2002. Though it is not widely known, the University of Oxford has one of the UK's largest continuing education departments, and its operation is one of the most successful globally. For over 120 years the Department has enabled learners to engage with the University, and each year more than 15,000 students study with the Department. As the Director of Finance and Administration Sean is responsible for all aspects of the Department's commercial management and for the core services (such as Human Resources, Finance, Facilities and Services, and IT) provided to the academic divisions of the Department.

In addition to these duties Sean became Director of TALL in 2005. TALL has become one of the most successful and innovative e-learning groups in the continuing education sector. In September 2010 the team was awarded, by the Association for Learning Technology (ALT), a prestigious national award in recognition of its excellent practice and achievement in the learning technology field. As well as delivering online distance learning to more than 3,000 students each year, TALL offers e-learning consultancy services, which are informed by its extensive range of research projects that focus on new ways of using technology to enhance teaching and learning at a distance. This work helps the Department and its clients to deliver its wide range of high-quality courses to students in innovative ways, giving an even broader range of students the opportunity to benefit from continuing education.

Sean's recent projects have included: the Cascade project, which investigated how technology can be harnessed to improve effectiveness and efficiency in curriculum delivery; the exploration of the size and shape of the UK online learning market; and the application of process review to improve organizational efficiency.

Ronnie George – Online Support Assistant
Ronnie George

Ronnie is TALL’s Online Support Assistant, working with Mike, Ian, and Katherine to support the Department’s growing number of online students. She is a keen online learner herself and is currently completing courses with Skillcrush and the College of Media and Publishing.

Prior to joining TALL, Ronnie worked as Research Assistant for an independent market research company based at Bournemouth University and has several years’ experience as an arts administrator, working primarily for museums. She has a degree in Drama (Hull University) and an MA in English Studies (Oxford Brookes University).

Ian Gloster – Web Developer/IT Support
Ian Gloster

Ian joined TALL in 2001 as a Web developer, and IT support assistant. He works predominantly on developing web material for the online 'Diploma in Computing' and 'Advanced Diploma in Local History', but also works closely with the other members of the technical team producing materials for all of TALL’s projects utilising XML, Flash, and Video technology. More recently he has been involved in TALL’s implementation of streaming media. In addition to his Web development responsibilities, Ian assists the head of IT in providing support to the department’s online students.

Ian graduated from the BBC engineering training programme in Electronics and Broadcast engineering (Wood Norton, Evesham), and went on to acquire considerable experience in broadcast and video technical operations. Having moved to Internet based media, he continues to develop his skills in Web technology.

Mohammed Shirazul Hoque – Web Developer (Course Delivery)
Mohammed Shirazul Hoque

Mohammed first joined TALL during the summer of 2015 as a temporary Web Developer to help the team convert its portfolio of online courses to a new format. He officially became a member of staff in April 2016. In his role as Web Developer (Course Delivery), Mohammed works closely with the Course Delivery Coordinator and is responsible for implementing updates to the content of the Department’s growing portfolio of online courses. With his infectious smile he brings happiness wherever he goes.

As a recent graduate (2015) of computer science from Oxford Brookes University, Mohammed is keen to continue to develop his understanding of website semantics.

Abi McEwan – Digital Learning Project Officer
Abi McEwan

Abi joined the TALL team in August 2019 as a Digital Learning Project Officer and is responsible for managing the development of new online courses and updates to existing ones.

Abi worked first as a Hotel Supervisor and then an Assistant Office Manager whilst studying a part-time undergraduate degree in Sociology through the Open University. In 2016 Abi relocated to Oxford to complete an MA in Publishing Media at Oxford Brookes University, focusing on academic and educational publishing. Before joining TALL, Abi worked in the journal’s editorial team at Oxford University Press for two years, supporting academic editors to disseminate research internationally.

Katherine McKelvey Cosin – Online Support Assistant
Katherine McKelvey Cosin

Katherine joined TALL in December 2019 as a Part-Time Online Support Assistant. She works on preparing online courses for delivery, and provides technical support to online students.

She has a background in online publishing at Blackwell’s Publishing (now Wiley) and has more recently worked for Clarendon Business Centres in the capacity of a part time Customer Service Assistant, for five and half years.

No stranger to the University, she completed a Masters in European Literature, French, in 2005 and has an undergraduate degree from Liverpool University.

Rupert Melvin – Project Manager
Rupert Melvin

Rupert is TALL’s Project Manager and is responsible for working on a range of projects undertaken by the TALL unit, with particular responsibility for coordinating the production of new online courses and managing the allocation of resources between the team’s projects.

After graduating from the University of Bournemouth in 2008 with a BSc in Applied Geography, Rupert spent six years working for one of the largest Welfare-to-Work organisations in the UK, developing new curriculum, project managing learning innovations and developing their Learning Technologies strategy. More recently he has also worked for one of the country’s leading bespoke e-Learning content development companies as a Project Manager. In addition to being a registered PRINCE2® project manager, Rupert also holds a PGCE specialising in Leadership & Management.

Steph Nelson – Course Delivery Coordinator
Steph Nelson

Steph joined the team in August 2017 as Course Delivery Coordinator. She is responsible for updating and delivering the online courses offered by TALL. Steph previously worked for Network Rail in London as a qualified PRINCE 2 Scheme Project Manager, developing rail improvement schemes including new stations and capacity enhancement projects. Steph has a background in education. After graduating from the University of Sheffield in 2009, with a degree in English Language and Linguistics, she went on to complete a PGCE and worked as a Primary School teacher for five years.

Rachel Savory – Digital Learning Project Officer
Rachel Savory

Rachel joined the team in May 2018 as a digital project officer and is responsible for overseeing the development of new online courses and updates to existing ones.

After graduating from UEA in European Literature and German, she worked in film production before moving to the British Library where she project managed one of their flagship products Turning the Pages for a number of years. Since then she has freelanced as a project/production manager working for various organisations including most recently UCL Press.

Mike Taylor – IT Support & Systems Administrator
Mike Taylor

Mike joined TALL in June 2000 to lead the IT support team where he provides support to the in-house staff, the TALL students and the TALL tutors. Since joining TALL Mike has overhauled the server architecture that underpins TALL, improving performance for students, tutors and staff. At present he is working with the TALL team to move all online courses to a Moodle environment running on Linux servers.

Mike Taylor has a degree in Business Information Systems from Anglia University. He then spent 4 years with BancTec Limited, he joined BancTec as a Project engineer before moving to the MIS department to support PCs and the company Intranet.

Nicola Warren – Co-Manager (Administration)
Nicola Warren

Nicola is TALL's Co-Manager (Administration) and is responsible for the administration, personnel and finances of the TALL unit as well as overseeing the group's course production and delivery services.

After graduating from the University of Leicester in 1995 with a BSc in Combined Sciences, Nicola spent six years supporting the use of networked services at the University of Sussex Computing Service, UKERNA, and the Trans-European Research and Education Networking Association (TERENA), based in Amsterdam. Nicola joined the University of Oxford in 2001 as Online Learning Research/Project Officer to manage online projects and assist the University's Director of Distance and Online Learning to seek funding and further develop the University's provision of online courses. Nicola joined TALL in February 2005 as Administration Manager and was promoted to be co-manager of the unit in October 2007.