Lauryn Oates, PhD, works to achieve social change through education. She’s focused on maximizing the quality of learning and teaching, through the creation of stimulating curricula, great teaching, a high standard of learning materials, and by fostering critical thinking. She has contributed to education design and delivery in conflict zones and in states recovering from conflict, especially literacy education, teacher education and open education. As Executive Director of CW4WAfghan, she also contributes to the planning and design of the organization’s education programming in Afghanistan. She has designed national strategies to promote children’s reading, and has led studies, evaluations, verifications and gender analyses for USAID funded education projects in various countries. She is also the creator of Afghanistan’s first and only open educational resource (OER) initiative, the Darakht-e Danesh Library, winner of a presidential citation from the American Library Association (2018) and contributed to the successful adult literacy education program known as Afghanistan Lowalee (Afghanistan Reads), recognized as a Literacy Best Practice honouree by the Library of Congress (2017).
Her doctoral research with the Language and Literacy Education Department at the University of British Columbia (UBC) focused on the development of mother tongue teaching resources using ICT for primary teachers in northern Uganda. Lauryn is the recipient of a Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal awarded by the province of BC. She sits on the board of the Syrian Kids Foundation, and teaches at both UBC and at the School of Humanitarian Studies at Royal Roads University.