Plenary sessions speakers

Quality assurance and accreditation in medical education: it is difficult, expensive and essential

David Gordon

He has been president of the World Federation for Medical Education (WFME) since 2015.  After qualifying from the University of Cambridge, Professor Gordon held research, academic and clinical appointments in Leicester, Cambridge and London.  He was on the staff of the Wellcome Trust, then dean of the medical faculty in Manchester, president of the Association of Medical Schools in Europe and chair of the Council of Heads of Medical Schools in the UK.  He left Manchester in 2007 to join WFME, then based in Copenhagen, Denmark and now in Ferney-Voltaire, France, near Geneva.

Connected Credentials and Competencies Linking Education and Careers

Deborah Everhart

She serves as a Senior Strategic Advisor at Credential Engine, leading the expansion of credential transparency initiatives that enable more effective connections between education and career opportunities. With the American Council on Education, she has led research groups of nationally-recognized experts, authoring “Quality Dimensions for Connected Credentials,” “Communicating the Value of Competencies,” and “Clarifying Competency Based Education Terms: A Lexicon.” She has long been a leader in the development of open technology standards, including leading IMS Global workgroups for competency-based education, comprehensive learner records, and digital credentials. She chaired the Badge Alliance workgroup that defined a conceptual framework and technical standards for Open Badge endorsements. Her business expertise includes leadership roles in technology architecture and product strategy at Cengage and Blackboard. Her thought leadership has evolved through numerous white papers, book chapters, and presentations on innovations in education, emerging technologies, portfolios, learning engagement, badges, digital credentials, and competency-based learning. She lives and works in Washington, DC, where she contributes to federal strategy papers and national initiatives.


Pre-conference workshops facilitators

Blockchain and its influence on learning and certification

Ger Driesen

Think of someone connecting people, ideas and inspiration in the global Learning and Development community and you’ve just created a good description of Ger Driesen. He is the Learning Innovation Leader at aNewSpring:the Learning Journey Platform for Training Providers. In this role, he focusses on sharing the latest insights with L&D professionals to inspire them to design, developed and deliver learning the best way. He also works as a consultant at Challenge Leadership Development Academy, the company he co-founded.
Ger is known as ‘the Dutch L&D trendcatcher’ based on his articles, blogs and tweets on L&D trends and he is a regular speaker at international conferences.
At the start of his career he received the award for most promising new L&D professional by the Dutch L&D community and received the 2013 Learning and Development Leadership Award from the World HRD Congress. Ger holds a master’s degree in Educational Science from Utrecht University and a Diploma of the Oxford Blockchain Program from Saïd Business School / University of Oxford. He can be reached at or via @GerDriesen.

Programmatic Accreditation in the STEM disciplines and the Assessment of Student Learning & Outcomes

Michael K. J. Milligan

He is the Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer of ABET, the global accreditor of college and university programs in applied & natural science, computing, engineering and engineering technology.
Under his leadership, the organization has increased its geographical reach and diversity, now representing 36 member societies and accredited programs in 32 countries. Prior to joining ABET in 2009, Milligan held various leadership positions in government and academia. He also served 24 years as a career U.S. Air Force officer.
Milligan has a doctorate degree from the University of Texas at Austin, a master’s from the University of Massachusetts at Lowell, and a bachelor’s from Michigan State University — all in electrical engineering. He also earned an M.B.A. from Western New England College, is a registered Professional Engineer (PE) in Colorado and Maryland and a Certified Association Executive (CAE).
Milligan lives in Severna Park, Md., with his engineer wife and their two sons. In his spare time, he enjoys bicycling, skiing, diving and woodworking.

How learning gains and Quality Assurance are (mis)aligned: an interactive workshop

Bart Rienties

He is Professor of Learning Analytics at the Institute of Educational Technology at the Open University UK. He is programme director Learning Analytics within IET and head of Data Wranglers, whereby he leads of group of learning analytics academics who conduct evidence-based research and sense making of Big Data at the OU. As educational psychologist, he conducts multi-disciplinary research on work-based and collaborative learning environments and focuses on the role of social interaction in learning, which is published in leading academic journals and books. His primary research interests are focussed on Learning Analytics, Computer-Supported Collaborative Learning, and the role of motivation in learning. Furthermore, Bart is interested in broader internationalisation aspects of higher education. He has successfully led a range of institutional/national/European projects and received a range of awards for his educational innovation projects.

GGP Alignment Workshop

Pauline Tang

The former CEO of THE-ICE (International Centre of Excellence in Tourism and Hospitality Education), Immediate Past Vice-President of INQAAHE (International Network of Quality Assurance Agencies in Higher Education), is an experienced international quality assurance specialist in the field of tourism, hospitality, events & culinary arts (TH&E) education. Skilled in brand creation and promotion, design and development of quality assurance (QA) and accreditation regime, corporate governance, benchmarking research and analysis of research findings; financial management and strategic planning, time management, organise and facilitate QA and capacity building workshops, plan, organise and implement world-class conferences, strong and effective negotiator with diverse interest groups from government or non-government organisations.
Internationally recognised as high-level expert in corporate policies and procedures, human resource management, benchmarking research, accreditation standards, comparative analysis of cross-border accreditation systems and the development of joint-assessment regimes to minimise the accreditation-burden of higher education institutions interested in the pursuit of excellence.
On a regular basis, Pauline is invited to present at high-profile conferences, to facilitate panel sessions, to conduct capacity building workshops on senior management best practice, development and review of internal and external quality assurance policy and procedure, and/or as external quality assurance reviewer for government and/or non-government education QA agencies.