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About Qaspir

QASPIR is a provider of campus-wide consulting for Continuing Professional Development, Strategic Planning, Assessment,  Accreditation, Risk Management and Institutional Effectiveness.  QASPIR also provides Conferences, Workshops, Webinars. 

Since 2014, the founders of QASPIR have been working closely with a number of institutions in the Middle East, UK and USA helping streamline their assessment and planning processes for academic accreditation. During this time, it has become clear there is a strong need to provide clarification and training on areas such as Quality Assurance, Effective Assessment, Strategic Planning, Risk Management and Institutional Research.  

QASPIR works on a solution based model; we remain continuously engaged with our client throughout the consultative process until we are satisfied that the institution has well established processes and trained staff to continue the work. 

Our process starts with a customizable and comprehensive diagnosis within the specific area for the institution. This is followed by onsite consultation that will enable institutions to meet accreditation standards; measure outcomes-based learning goals and institutional objectives for continuous improvement; as well as risk management; health & safety and other aspects of accreditation. 

The QASPIR Conferences and Workshops are based on instruction. How to get the best processes for your institution and be able to share the knowledge we have provided. This is followed by working with partner institutions to support the process related to strategic planning, assessment planning, ongoing program review, risk management, health & safety, and the development of accreditation-related documents. This means that every program, department, college, and institution has access to our highly qualified consultants for assessment plans, submitting program review documents, authoring self-studies, and includes any documentation custom to the process.  

It is our goal to continuously work with the institution over the coming years in providing a trusted source of training and development for any need that may arise.

The Management Team

Prof. John Ryder

Prof. John Ryder

“Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better”

John Ryder holds a Ph.D. in Philosophy from Stony Brook University of the State University of New York (1982), and serves as the Provost and Professor of Philosophy at the American University of Malta. He has served previously as Professor of Philosophy and Provost at the American University of Ras Al Khaimah, United Arab Emirates (2012-2016), Rector of Khazar University in Baku, Azerbaijan (2010-2012), and for 30 years held a range of positions at the State University of New York, from Dean of Arts and Sciences and Professor of Philosophy at SUNY Cortland to Director of the Office of International Programs and Director of the Center on Russia and the United States at the State University of New York System Administration. 

Ryder’s expertise in higher education administration is in the areas of accreditation, university start-ups, academic outcomes assessment, and general issues of university organisation and management.

Stuart Blacklock

Stuart Blacklock

“There is no elevator to success — you have to take the stairs.” 

Stuart has been working in assessment for higher education since 2006. During this time he has worked with institutions around the world, helping create effective assessment processes, portfolios and strategic planning. Stuart has presented in the UK, UAE, OMAN, Singapore and the USA. He has undergone extensive training on course assessment, designing effective rubrics, strategic planning and learning various international accreditation requirements.  

Prior to working in higher education Stuart spent 10 years in media, where he was involved in organising international conferences, workshops, websites and publications.

Rachel Redhead

Rachel Redhead

“Start by doing whats necessary; then do whats possible; and suddenly you are doing the impossible.” 

Rachel has been involved in marketing and media in higher education, lifestyle media and B2B for over 15 years. In her role, Rachel has organised conferences, hosted webinars, developed successful marketing campaigns, award evenings and run online communities. 

Rachel has a degree in Media Communications and a diploma in copywriting. In her spare time Rachel is a keen runner, and mother of two.

Sandra Rodriguez

Sandra Rodriguez

“The pessimist sees difficulty in every opportunity. The optimist sees opportunity in every difficulty.”

Sandra has been working in higher education since 2011,and has been involved for 20 years in managing corporate relationships. Sandra has organized congresses, fairs, and events in Ecuador. She loves dogs and manages the Dog Friendly Brand in Ecuador and in the Andean Region.

Sandra has a Master’s degree in Management and an MBA, and is a mother of three kids, one of whom is a dog.

Our International Advisory Board

Dr Heather Friesen

 Dr. Heather Friesen is currently serving as Executive Director of Organizational Planning and Strategy at Abu Dhabi University. She has worked in higher education for 25 years in Canada and the Middle East, holding senior positions in strategic planning, institutional research, enrollment management, quality assurance and accreditation.

Her research and career interests include the study of student success, with her doctoral work examining factors that impact higher education participation and persistence mapped against GI (geographic information systems) coordinates as a proxy for neighborhood and socioeconomic status.

She received her Doctorate of Education in higher education leadership from Simon Fraser University, Canada.

 

Professor Pete Boyd

Pete Boyd is an education consultant and research mentor working with educators and practitioner researchers in schools, colleges and universities to support the development of research-informed practice. He is emeritus professor in education at the University of Cumbria and visiting professor in academic development at Newman University.

For twelve years Pete was a teacher and head of department in secondary schools in the north of England and for three years worked in residential adventure education and field-study for primary and secondary school students. He became a teacher educator based in higher education and his primary field is teacher education, including initial education for beginning teachers as well as advanced professional education and professional development for experienced teachers.

 As a teacher educator Pete contributed to teaching and learning development, including design and validation of an innovative part-time foundation degree programme for teaching assistants and a fully online part-time masters level programme for experienced teachers. He moved into academic development and led a programme for new academics on teaching, learning and assessment in higher education. His research at this time related to this academic development role and focused on academic induction and on assessment and feedback in higher education. Pete was the lead author of UK national guidelines for academic induction of new teacher educators based in higher education. The ‘Becoming Teacher Educator’ guidelines were published by the Higher Education Academy and won the BERA / Sage practitioner research prize in 2009.

Dr Tamer Salama El Marsafawy

Dr Tamer is currently serving as Dean of Institutional Research at Ras Al Khaimah Medical and Health Sciences University. 

Dr Tamer has served as a teacher and researcher in higher education for over 23 years and has published 27 papers (Education, Biology, Statistics & Genetics).  He has played a leading role in the development of policies and guidelines for RAKMHSU Licensure and accreditation by the CAA, UAE.  His roles include evaluation of academic and non-academic processes; faculty and student orientation, strategic planning; program outcomes and effectiveness evaluation; coordinating data research; settings standardized procedures for course and program development.

 Dr Tamer is a member of the Network for Quality Assurance Agencies in Higher Education (ANQAAHE).

Dr Amal BouZeineddine

Amal BouZeineddine, Ed. D. Dr. Amal BouZeineddine has earned her doctoral degree in Bilingual Education from Boston University in Massachusetts, United States of America. She is the Associate Director for the Center for Teaching and Learning at the American University of Beirut and a full time faculty member in the Department of Education at the University. She teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in elementary education with focus on teaching of language arts, curriculum design and children’s literature.

She is the chair of the Practice Teaching Committee, Chair of Revising the BA program and Chair of the Comprehensive Examination-Elementary Education. In addition, Dr. BouZeineddine is the convener for Elementary Education and currently the Technical Coordinator of RACE II/DFID project with MEHE. Dr. BouZeineddine has been a consultant for educational institutions and has conducted in-service training and professional development activities for both Pre University and higher education faculty in Lebanon and the region in places such as Egypt, Jordan, Qatar, KSA, UAE, Kuwait, Bahrain, Oman and Sudan. Dr. BouZeineddine’s research interests include assessing learning outcomes at both the program and course levels. In addition, she developed and reviewed research-based training manuals. Of her works are: •Faculty members ’ and Department Chairs ’ Perceptions about the Program Learning Assessment Process: the Case of the American University of Beirut. •A recommended framework for identifying best practices in teacher preparation programs. •Improving teacher education in Arab countries: What can we learn from international experiences? •Assessing Learning Outcomes: Changing Habits of Mind and Transforming Universities into Learning Communities ; •Evaluating Program Learning Outcomes – Process and Product – the Context of Qatar University- research grant ; •A Mechanism for Assessing Teacher Performance; •Relationship Between Reading Attitudes, Achievement, and Learners’ Perceptions of Their Jigsaw II Cooperative Learning.

Prof. Abhilasha Singh

A staunch supporter of quality education with a strong commitment to academic excellence and unwavering dedication to the success of students, Prof. Abhilasha Singh is a Provost/Vice President of Academic Affairs and Professor of Organizational Behavior at the American University in the Emirates, Dubai, UAE.

Throughout her distinguished career, she was engaged in a series of academic administrative positions at various institutions, providing strategic directives at a senior leadership role and ensuring its implementation with determination, while working closely with the University President and senior administrative colleagues. In addition to advising the Board on strategic directives and liaising effectively between the President and the members of the Board as General Secretary of the Board of Trustees at American University in the Emirates, she was actively engaged in monitoring compliance with prescribed standards and mandating administrative requirements, for operational excellence both as the Vice President for Research and Advancement and as Dean for College of Education. She also had served as President and CEO of the College of Fashion and Design, accredited by the UAE Ministry of Education, while concurrently serving as strategic advisor (honorary position) to the President of American University in the Emirates, Dubai.

Passionate about excellence in higher education, she has been actively engaged in the quality frameworks and assessment processes, while closing the quality loop through identifying the potential gaps and redesigning the processes.

Author of more than thirty papers, articles, and case studies, based upon extensive grant-funded research, published in national and international journals, she is a dedicated, accomplished, and progressive leader, with a history of providing educational, research, and organizational direction for academic institutions.

Apart from holding a Doctorate, she is a Certified Practitioner of MBTI, EQ-i/ EQ 360, Balance Scorecard and SHRM. Her credentials also include an executive certificate program in Talent Analytics from MIT.

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