Josie A Fraser
Deputy-Vice Chancellor, Open University
Josie joined the Open University in March 2017, but describes her interest in the Open University and it's mission as 'long term' after being a tutor on an OU MSc course back in the early 2000s, an experience that influenced her teaching for many years. Josie was previously Executive Dean of the Faculty of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics before taking up the DVC role from 1st January 2019.
Josie started her academic career as a neurobiologist with interests in animal behaviour and treatments for neurological and psychiatric disorders. Her BSc degree (Leeds) and PhD (Bradford) were followed with research posts at the Medical Research Council, the University of Cambridge, and the University of Massachusetts Medical School, where Josie was part of an international team at the cutting edge of brain scanning techniques. Josie's focus shifted towards teaching and making a difference to a wide range of students from varied backgrounds, developed as Senior Lecturer and Associate Dean (Learning & Teaching) at the University of Bradford.
She has championed team-based learning as a teaching style on the national and international stage, resulting in invitations to consult at other Universities, and to sit on the board of an international healthcare education organisation. In previous roles, and now at the Open University, Josie promotes initiatives to broaden access to STEM subjects for under-represented groups, and continues her long-standing interest in technology-enhanced learning. She is a role model on the Leadership Foundation for Higher Education "Aurora" programme (developing women academics' leadership skills and aspiration).
A passionate believer in opening up opportunity, Josie enjoys outreach (bringing amazing OU research into schools and out to the general public), supporting the development of academic careers, and loves working at the Open University where the myriad of student journeys are a constant source of inspiration.