John Hamer has worked as an educational consultant since 2000 and is currently Chair of AlphaPlus Ltd. having been part of the company since its foundation. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, and in 2011 was appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) for his services to heritage education.
In 1984, after more than 20 years’ teaching and senior management experience in primary and secondary schools and sixth form colleges, he joined Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Schools (HMI) as a history, assessment and secondary education specialist. Amongst other appointments he was a staff inspector for 11-19 education and the specialist adviser to Ofsted for history, political education and museums. He undertook secondments to two local education authorities, to the then DfEE as an adviser on curriculum and assessment and to SCAA (now Ofqual). Between 1997 and 2000 John was the Education Policy Adviser to the Heritage Lottery Fund.
John has acted as a consultant on curriculum, assessment and school evaluation to a number of national and international organisations, including: the Department for Education (DfE), the National Assembly for Wales Ministry of Education, the Council of Europe, the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe, the Caribbean Examinations Council, the government of Mozambique and, most recently, the Crown Prince Court of Abu Dhabi.
Andrew Boyle is the Director of Quantitative Research and Analysis at AlphaPlus. In this role he provides a comprehensive and flexible service for the company’s clients. This service utilises a wide range of statistical techniques, and applies them with great accuracy to clients’ data sets. Further, in delivering results to clients we make sure that we communicate effectively and clearly. We write succinct reports with clear summaries of findings and recommendations, provide informative graphics in presentations and reports and are always prepared to discuss findings with clients and stakeholders.
Before joining AlphaPlus in 2013, Andrew worked for many organisations in UK education including the exams regulator Ofqual and its predecessor QCA. He has also worked for several major UK awarding organisations, including Cambridge Assessment and City & Guilds.
In addition, Andrew is an accomplished assessment researcher. He is a Fellow of the European assessment association, AEA-Europe, and was a member of the English exams regulator Ofqual’s Vocational Advisory Group.
Gavin is an educational assessment specialist with a background in engineering which is brought to bear on technology-based assessment projects. He has a successful track record working in the UK and internationally on product development and consultancy projects for education ministries, Awarding Organisations and professional bodies. Gavin joined AlphaPlus in 2006 and is now the Director of General Consulting. He brings to the team strong project management skills developed on contracts for both public and private sector customers, and experience gained as an engineering process manager in extracting business value from major IT investments through process redesign, system integration, innovation and training.
Gavin is Board Member and Executive Committee Member of the eAssessment Association (www.e-assessment.com) and has presented his work at eassessment conferences including; The eAssessment Question, eAssessment in Practice and the eVocational conference.
Sarah is Director of Assessment Development at AlphaPlus. She joined the organisation in November 2014 and since that time she has led a number of assessment-related projects including a project on grading methods for vocational qualifications, a large validation study on an examination for solicitors and the test design and development of a national test for the examinations regulator in England. Sarah is currently leading a four-year project to develop national assessments in reading and numeracy for learners aged 7 to 14 in Wales. These assessments will initially be delivered on paper and are converting to computer adaptive testing in the second year of the project. Sarah has also led wider research projects including literature reviews on textbook use, on post-16 English and mathematics GCSEs and on modern foreign languages teaching and assessment.
Sarah’s expertise is particularly in the area of assessment design, development and evaluation. Sarah is also expert in a wide range of research techniques including evaluations, literature reviews, comparative studies and randomised control trials. She has worked extensively with assessment organisations and Ministries of Education in the UK and internationally. Sarah has a 1st Class degree in Psychology, a Masters in Educational Assessment, and is a Fellow and Co-Chair of the Scientific Programme Committee of the Association of Educational Assessment – Europe. Sarah is also on the publications committee of the IEA.
Sarah has an exceptional profile and reputation among key players in the UK and international assessment sectors.
Tom has been a Director of AlphaPlus since 2010, and has worked in education and educational technology for the last 20 years. Tom was trained as a software engineer, and obtained a PhD in Machine Vision from Brunel University, where he subsequently worked as a lecturer and research team leader. Tom subsequently ran an e-assessment technology company for 10 years, developing and deploying innovative e-assessment products for customers in the private and public sectors.
Tom leads the Qualification development, standards & National Occupational Standards business unit within AlphaPlus. In recent years this part of the business has developed large numbers of National Occupational Standards (NOS), qualifications, associated assessments, and learning materials across a wide range of vocational occupations, both for international and UK clients. Much of the work is in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, and the AlphaPlus team have built a strong reputation in the region. In addition to his work with qualifications and standards, Tom provides strategic technology consultancy to AlphaPlus’ UK awarding organisation clients.
John is a director of AlphaPlus Consultancy Ltd and an experienced leader of projects in education, particularly in the areas of standards, qualifications and assessment, and educational technology. He is an experienced business manager with a track record of business growth in UK education and technology businesses. He has specialised in providing world-class services for standards, qualifications and assessment agencies in the UK and overseas through the three companies he has helped to found and build over the last 15 years: BTL Group Ltd (www.btl.com), The Virtual College plc (www.virtual-college.co.uk) and his current business, AlphaPlus.
John has a BSc and MEng in Electrical Engineering from the University of Bath. He is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Educational Assessors. He is also Chairman of The Beckfoot Trust – a multi academy trust in West Yorkshire.