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Date published: 24 April 2012

Open Universities Australia (OUA) is today pleased to announce the appointment of its new Executive Director of Academic Products & Services - Professor Marcia Devlin.

According to Paul Wappett, OUA CEO: "After an extensive search, OUA is pleased that Professor Devlin has accepted the role and we look forward to working with her as of the 25th of June 2012."

"Marcia is well known and respected for her high aspirations for educational institutions and for being passionate about social inclusion and access to education," says Mr Wappett.

Professor Devlin is currently the Chair of Higher Education Research at Deakin University, and is the Director of Deakin's Higher Education Research Group.

A true believer in lifelong learning, Professor Devlin holds a PhD from the University of Melbourne in improving university teaching and learning; a Masters by research from Macquarie University in university student learning; a Graduate Diploma in Applied Psychology from Swinburne University of Technology also focused on university student learning; a Diploma in Education from La Trobe University; and a Bachelor of Arts from the Australian National University.

This appointment is one of many recent new additions at OUA as the business continues to experience exceptional growth both in terms of staff and students.

Other key appointments include:

  • Melissa Allardice, Director, Marketing & Communications
  • Vincent Creighton, Director, Vocational Education & Training
  • David Christie, Director of Strategy
  • Dr Cathy Stone, Director, Student Experience Unit
  • Amgad Louka, Director, Centre of Online Learning Excellence (COLE)

"As more and more Australians choose to study online, OUA is strengthening every aspect of the business and this includes building a leading, high calibre staff network. It's about attracting leading individuals with the expertise, knowledge, capability and a sense of innovation to maintain our market leader positioning," says Mr Wappett.

"Online education is experiencing a vast amount of growth and OUA has been there every step of the way. The ability to access tertiary education at a time, place and pace that suits each individual has an extraordinary appeal, which in 2011 attracted over 55,000 students to OUA.

"This speaks volumes about the shifting needs and attitudes about education, and even more so about the type of person that is the student of today, and crucially the student of tomorrow.

"Age, educational experience and other commitments are no longer barriers to education - OUA's online community is made up of working professionals, stay-at-home mums, mature age students and young school leavers - residing in cities and in rural and regional Australia. Online education is truly ubiquitous and our student cohort is the ultimate example of this," says Mr Wappett.

"Online education is here to stay and only organisations that are willing to challenge long held assumptions about the education industry and the typical student, those that continue to question, listen, analyse and innovate, will truly prosper in this sector," says Mr Wappett.

About Open Universities Australia - leading online learning

Owned by seven of Australia's premier universities, OUA is the national leader in quality online tertiary education. Enrolling more than 200,000 students since 1993, OUA provides access to over 1400 units and 170 qualifications taught by more than 20 leading Australian universities and tertiary education providers.

For further information, please contact:
Jessica Singh
Senior External Communications and Media Relations Officer
Open Universities Australia
Ph: 03 8628 2412
Mobile: +61 419 662 553