Leadership Award

Patrina Law

The Open University (United Kingdom)

Currently leader of OpenLearn at the Open University, Patrina’s path of strategic leadership in OER champions the cause of openness in education. She has led projects and policy to extend the reach of OER, drive its scholarship, and support learners with career and life-enhancing content, enabling a reach to millions of learners (16 million in 2022) more than 60% outside the UK, many of them students without ready access to learning materials. Patrina has managed the OER Operating Policy, making possible for OER to published across the most popular third-party channels such as YouTube and Amazon, all part of extend the social mission of open education.

Patrina identified early on that the Open University’s (OU) endeavour to produce OER at scale through OpenLearn was one which had become disassociated with institutional OER research – a separation of policy and data. She has driven strategic projects to research learners’ motivations for, and expectations of, their learning experience with OER and has completely changed the face of OER delivery at the OU, pioneering the work to deliver millions of free certificates and digital badges for OER against a backdrop of MOOC providers charging a fee in recognition of studying equivalent micro-credentials.

Under Patrina’s leadership OpenLearn now underpins all formal student induction, employability, course choice and subject mastery as well as serving a global, growing population of millions of international learners. She has ensured that the scholarship of OER is built into new staff induction, providing extensive support and training to ensure open practice is embedded into academic life. Patrina’s inspirational work has driven projects with Government departments, international bodies, private sector, NGO and not-for-profit organisations and has attracted extensive funding from multiple donors.

Shortly after the Russian invasion of the Ukraine, Patrina led the commissioning and publishing tailored resources for Ukrainians, and the expanded effort that she led is also recognized this year with the OEAward Special Award for Resilience.

I am inspired to nominate Dr. Patrina Law for this award because the global reach of OER through OpenLearn is now considered by many to be the jewel in the crown of Europe’s largest distance learning university, and this is largely down to her contribution.

Award Nominator

This is an extremely strong and compelling nomination which details how leadership over many years can result in significant global impact. What I see I is one person’s drive to bring openness mainstream and to continue to find ways to lift people up all over the world.

Award Reviewer

About Leadership Award

This award is presented to an individual who has demonstrated significant leadership and longstanding involvement with Open Education. This person has made significant and clear contributions to the furtherance of the Open Education movement, with contributions to Open Education that have spanned regions and/or had a global impact.