Bio – Full

Change. Education. Development. The Art of Presenting. Simplicity. Guitar Making. Sometimes, one box alone just doesn’t quite fit.

Andrew was born in Glasgow on December the 7th 1973. In 1977 his family moved to Helensburgh where he was educated first at Hermitage Primary School followed by Lomond School for his secondary education.

A lifelong passion for guitar playing and manufacture began in 1986, when he was introduced to three chord theory during a summer holiday. His technical ability has fortunately moved on since then, and he has taught, played and made a variety of styles of instrument.

On leaving school, Andrew was set to attend Robert Gordon’s Institute of Technology to study Architecture, but a change of focus in the summer of 1991 saw him take up a place at Glasgow University to study Divinity and History.

Andrew graduated Bachelor of Divinity (Hons – Systematic Theology & Ecclesiastical History) in 1995 picking up the accolades of Caird Prize for Divinity and Cleland Rae Wilson Medal for Systematic Theology due to his class leading performance.

In 1995 he began research for a PhD in the area of ‘Kairos Theology – God’s intervention into time’. During this period of study, Andrew started working part time in care for the elderly with the Church of Scotland. To make ends meet, work encroached on study, and to this day he has yet to submit his thesis, but hopes to, one day. Whilst working for the Church of Scotland, he was responsible for the streamlining of electronic record keeping and the establishment of a Day Care centre.

During this time, Andrew began working with individuals to help them overcome their fears and anxieties when speaking in public. He has since worked with thousands of people, helping them improve their presentation and speaking skills.

Attending Strathclyde University in 1997 to undertake a Post Graguate Certificate in Education (PCGE – Secondary) in the areas of Religious Education and History, Andrew passed with distinction.

In November 1998 he secured the post of Teacher of Religious, Moral and Philosophical studies at Hermitage Academy in Helensburgh where he completed his probationary period for the GTCS with every competence credited as a ‘particular strength’ – an achievement few educators will match. Greatly involved in the life of the school, Andrew represented staff on School Board and School Council, and worked with SMT in the negotiation of the ‘Teaching for the 21st Century’ agreement with staff on behalf of the EIS.

In October 2003, Andrew was appointed Education Support Officer for ICT in Argyll & Bute Council, where he worked to support staff across all of the 95 schools in Argyll & Bute – primary, secondary and special learning centres. During this time he began honing his ICT skills, picking up qualifications from Microsoft, and Adobe, began developing online support sites for staff, and encouraging staff to make greater use of collaborative web 2.0 tools in their work with pupils.

In 2007, Andrew took up a secondment at Learning & Teaching Scotland working on the production of online learning materials. Some of the fruits of this labour can be found at swict.com.

2008 saw Andrew join the Glow team at Learning and Teaching Scotland as a Development Officer working with Local Authorities across Scotland. In that organisation, he took up the role of Programme Director for Emerging Technologies in 2009, providing the leadership and vision for the rollout, development and future use of technology in Scottish education.  He has spoken both nationally and internationally on the use of ICT in education.

With a passion for simplicity, Andrew seeks to help all those he works with reduce complexity and ensure ease of access to concepts, tools, opportunities and resources. He is a firm believer in the benefits of online collaboration, seeking to encourage people to share their successes and failures, reflections and observations. We don’t just learn by our own experience, we learn by reflecting on the experience of others too. He’s not afraid to fail, and operates on the principle pronounced by the Oracle at Delphi ‘Wisest is he who knows he doesn’t know’.

A keen developer, Andrew is committed to supporting a number of online initatives. Further information about these can be found in his portfolio. Development clearly moves beyond the browser too, and he is involved in helping organisations transform.

Andrew is married to Nicola and they have two children, Elijah and Claudia. In his free time, he enjoys church, walking, cycling, reading and both playing and making guitars. A self-confessed gadget geek, he reads technology news each day before turning to more conventional media outlets.