Learning content expert group

Supporting UK sector negotiations for learning and teaching content across further education and higher education.

The group will work closely with the UUK Jisc Content negotiation strategy group to secure agreements that provide affordable and equitable access to learning content and solutions that enable excellence in teaching and enhance the student experience and learner outcomes.

Membership includes representatives from both higher and further education.

The group focuses on:

  • Taking the national level strategy and objectives agreed by the UUK Jisc content negotiation strategy group and turning these into tactics that can be applied within the context of individual negotiations for content and learning solutions that support learning and teaching in Higher Education and Further Education  
  • Ensuring negotiations and the subsequent agreements put in place will deliver on the national level objectives in a manner that is achievable and sustainable at the local institutional and college level 
  • Strategic input and insight in the negotiation and licensing of alternative and innovative models for achieving affordable and sustainable access to learning content and solutions that will support the sector’s ambitions for the transformation of teaching, learning and assessment

It will escalate matters of broader importance and impact to the UUK Jisc content negotiation strategy group and coordinate with other strategic and sector groups


  • Libby Homer, director of student and library services, Anglia Ruskin University (chair for higher education)
  • Rob Wraith, head of learning technology and digital learning, NCG (chair for further education)
  • Robin Armstrong Viner, associate director: head of libraries, Swansea University (WHELF appointee)
  • Phil Brabban, university librarian and group director of learning resources, University of Coventry
  • Nicola Brandon, digital learning and innovation manager, Neath Port Talbot college group
  • Dominic Broadhurst, head of content and discovery, University of Salford
  • Maren Deepwell, chief executive, Association for Learning Technology
  • Victoria Farmer, resource services librarian, Robert Gordon University (SHEDL appointee)
  • Andrew Knight, acquisitions and content service manager, Imperial College London
  • William Nixon, deputy executive director, Research Libraries UK
  • Gavin Phillips, category manager, academic services, SUPC
  • Penny Robertson, libraries manager, City of Glasgow college
  • Lesley Robins, VP Academic and T&L lead, The College Merthyr Tydfil
  • Adam Robinson, content manager, University of Derby (Sherif representative)
  • Anthony Sinnott, access and procurement development manager, University of York (NAG appointee)
  • Keith Smyth, professor of pedagogy, chief executive, University of the Highlands and Islands (Association for Learning Technology appointee)
  • Jim Temple, library service manager, Aquinas College (Representing Council for Learning Resources in College)
  • Ann Rossiter, executive director, Society of College, National and University Libraries
  • Jo-Anne Watts, university librarian, University of Wolverhampton
  • Phil Whitehead, director of academic services & Digital learning, DN colleges group

Terms of reference

Core aims

  • Inform the deliberations and outputs of the UUK Jisc content negotiation strategy group through the provision of expert input on requirements of Jisc agreements for priority, high value learning content and solutions
  • Provide strategic input and advice for the negotiation of learning content and solutions which better leverage the scale of the sector as a whole for the benefit of the sector and each individual institution and college
  • Lead debate and drive thought leadership to help develop and implement solutions to challenges that will drive transformation, enable excellence in teaching and enhance the student experience and learner outcomes
  • Provide advice and input to Jisc on the detailed requirements of agreements with publishers/suppliers based on the overall objectives and strategy for negotiations
  • Provide expert advice to Jisc on current and future licensing models and terms and conditions in support of best practice and transparency
  • Guide the formation of pilots and other projects to consider viability, sustainability and applicability of new and innovative learning content and solutions
  • Provide feedback to Jisc on publisher/supplier proposals during the lifetime of the negotiations, advising on acceptability or otherwise
  • Provide advice and feedback to Jisc for the refinement and enhancement of publisher/supplier proposals
  • Provide advice and feedback to Jisc on communications with the sector throughout the negotiation process and through to implementation and embedding
  • Help facilitate feedback and discussions with the sectors to support the work of the group


The chairing of this group will include 2 co-chairs – one representing higher education and one representing further education.

In addition, there will be 8 representative members as follows:

  • 4 individuals from UK higher education institutions   
  • 4 individuals from UK further education and sixth form colleges  

The representative members will be from a range of institutions, including a range of Jisc bands, and from a variety of geographical areas.

There will be 8 members from professional organisations as follows:

  • SCONUL and RLUK – 1 appointee each 
  • SHEDL, WHELF – 1 appointee each 
  • Sherif user group, National Acquisitions Group (NAG) – 1 appointee each 
  • Association of Learning Technologists (ALT) – 1 appointee 
  • CoLRiC – 1 appointee

There will be 1 observer member from the procurement bodies.

The term of office for representative members is two years with the possibility of an additional term of up to two years upon the expiry of the first term.

Members from professional organisations and observer members do not have a formal term of office, but these roles will be reviewed annually by Jisc and the co-chairs to consider whether there is the right representation of organisations and roles.


When a vacancy for a professional organisation member arises, the relevant organisation will be invited to provide details of their appointee who will join the group.

When a vacancy for an observer member arises, the relevant organisation will be invited to provide details of their observer who will join the group.

When a vacancy for a representative member arises, a new member will be recruited by selection process to ensure selected individuals will bring the right expertise and knowledge, maintaining the representation of the group across the diversity of institutions it represents, including wide geographical coverage.

Recruitment of individuals should ensure participation from a variety of roles across the sector, including library directors, assistant library directors, LRC managers, curriculum leads, programme leaders, module leaders, learning technologists, subject librarians and subscription/e-resource managers.

When recruitment is considered, it is considered against the representation of institutions on the CNSG and CEG, ensuring a diversity of representation across the three groups.

The two-year term of office can be extended by an additional term of up to two years. This would be considered if the member wishes to extend their term and be determined by the co-chairs of the group and Jisc. The decision would take into account whether the member has normally been able to attend meetings and ensure that terms of office ended at different times to prevent a large change in membership at any one time.

Meetings and administration

There will be 4 meetings per annum.

Meetings will take place between meetings of the UUK/Jisc content negotiation strategy group (CNSG), in order to allow the discussion at the learning content expert group to feed into the CNSG’s deliberations.

The papers will be shared with the UUK Jisc content negotiation strategy group.

The group will decide what information about their work can be shared with the organisations that they represent, their institutions and other colleagues such as professional groups with whom they have links and would normally be open within the sector about non-confidential matters.

Where there is strategic benefit in sharing confidential papers or their content with sector groups, this will be advised when papers are distributed. In this situation, the papers and their content remain confidential in the sense they may not be shared further by those they are shared with, and those who receive them should be informed of this.

Detailed strategy and tactics and sensitive confidential information remain confidential to this group and the UUK Jisc content negotiation strategy group.