News Releases

UWI/VUSSC Explore Technology & Resources to Promote Access to Higher Education

For Release Upon Receipt - December 1, 2023

St. Augustine


 Dr Leroy Hill, Director Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning [left] and Ms. Rosario Passos Instructional Development Consultant at the British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) [right] celebrate the successful completion of the OER workshop with one of many successful participants, Dr Shamin Renwick Senior Librarian of the School of Education [centre]. 

St. Augustine, December 1, 2023 - The Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning (CETL) at The University of the West Indies (UWI) in St. Augustine, Trinidad and Tobago, is partnering with the Commonwealth of Learning and the Virtual University for Small States of the Commonwealth (VUSSC) to host a four-day workshop on integrating open educational resources (OERs) and open educational practices (OEPs) in higher education. The workshop, which ran from November 20 to November 23, 2023, aims to enable participants to access, create, and share quality educational content using OERs and OEPs at The UWI, St. Augustine.

 Dr. LeRoy Hill, the Director of the Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning (CETL) at UWI, at the opening ceremony highlighted the benefits of OER and OEPs for enhancing the quality, equity, and innovation of education. He also expressed his appreciation for the support and collaboration of Dr. Mairette Newman of the Commonwealth of Learning and VUSSC, which made the workshop possible.

 Dr. Hill intimated that, "As educators, we should be driven by a passion for excellence - a passion that fuels our quest for knowledge and innovation. Today, we have an opportunity to take our passion to the next level, by embracing the power of OER and OEPs. These are not just tools; they are expressions of our values, our vision, and our voice. OER empowers us to access, create, and share knowledge in ways that were unimaginable before. It enables us to overcome the barriers of cost, time, and space, and to reach learners from diverse backgrounds and contexts. By adopting OER, we affirm that excellence is not a privilege, but a right, for every student, everywhere."

 The workshop is facilitated by Ms. Rosario Passos, an Instructional Designer with over 20 years of experience, who has been working as an Instructional Development Consultant at the Learning and Teaching Centre (LTC) at the British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT), a post-secondary polytechnic institute in Vancouver. Ms. Passos has worked with The Commonwealth of Learning, the World Bank, The Commonwealth Secretariat, and the Justice Institute of BC to support post-secondary institutions and Ministries of Education in Africa, the Caribbean and South America to develop quality flexible learning solutions.

 Ms. Passos is an unconditional advocate of Open Education and promotes open pedagogy practices at BCIT, where she co-chairs the Open Education working group. Ms. Passos will guide the participants through a series of interactive sessions, activities, and discussions, covering topics such as:

What are OER and OEPs, and why are they important for higher education?

How to find, evaluate, and use OER in teaching and learning?

How to create and share OER using various tools and platforms?

How to integrate OER and OEPs into teaching scenarios and learning resources?

How to assess the impact of OER and OEPs on student learning and engagement?

 The workshop is part of CETL's ongoing efforts to promote excellence in teaching and learning and foster a culture of openness and innovation at UWI St. Augustine. It also aligns with the Commonwealth of Learning and VUSSC's vision and mission to create and widen access to quality education and training, and to support the development of small states and territories using open and distance learning.

 For information about future workshops, please contact Dr. LeRoy Hill at

 To learn more about The CETL please visit


 Open Educational Resources engagement session with Ms. Rosario Passos Instructional Development Consultant at the British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) and UWI staffers. 

 About The University of the West Indies

 The UWI has been and continues to be a pivotal force in every aspect of Caribbean development; residing at the centre of all efforts to improve the well-being of people across the region for the past 75 years.

 From a university college of London in Jamaica with 33 medical students in 1948, The UWI is today an internationally respected, global university with near 50,000 students and five campuses: Mona in Jamaica, St. Augustine in Trinidad and Tobago, Cave Hill in Barbados, Five Islands in Antigua and Barbuda and its Open Campus, and global centres in partnership with universities in North America, Latin America, Asia, Africa and Europe.

 The UWI offers over 800 certificate, diploma, undergraduate and postgraduate degree options in Culture, Creative and Performing Arts, Food and Agriculture, Engineering, Humanities and Education, Law, Medical Sciences, Science and Technology, Social Sciences, and Sport. As the Caribbean’s leading university, it possesses the largest pool of Caribbean intellect and expertise committed to confronting the critical issues of our region and wider world.

 The UWI has been consistently ranked among the top universities globally by the most reputable ranking agency, Times Higher Education (THE). The UWI is the only Caribbean-based university to make the prestigious lists since its debut in the rankings in 2018. In addition to its leading position in the Caribbean in the World University Rankings, it is also in the top 25 for Latin America and the Caribbean and the top 100 global Golden Age universities (between 50 and 80 years old).  The UWI is also featured among the leading universities on THE’s Impact Rankings for its response to the world’s biggest concerns, outlined in the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), including Good Health and Wellbeing; Gender Equality and Climate Action.

 2023 marks The UWI’s 75th anniversary. The Diamond jubilee milestone themed “UWI at 75. Rooted. Ready. Rising.” features initiatives purposely designed and aligned to reflect on the past, confront the present, and articulate plans for the future of the regional University.

 Learn more at