Barriers to innovation? | (Steve Wheeler)

Image from PxhereIn March I posted a survey question as a part of my ongoing research into the adoption of new technologies in learning. The background for this question was a statement I made during a keynote discussion session at Learning Technologies in London in January. I was asked about innovation in organisations. From my experience working in all sectors of education and training, I claimed that the most likely sector to innovate with new learning technologies would be primary education. This would be followed closely by Learning and Development in organisations. Secondary schools and…

Continue reading at:


We won’t get fooled again | (Steve Wheeler)

Image from PixabayThe recent April Fool’s day jokes are usually fun, and I’ve indulged myself once or twice. But amidst all the springtime pranks and laughter, a serious point was also made on social media. It was that April 1st appears to be the only date in the entire calendar when people make a real effort to carefully check news stories, to avoid being fooled.

Wouldn’t it be great if everyone learnt to do this every day, with every piece of news encountered? As most of our news is conveyed to us via digital media, we need to be literate in the use of these media if we are to learn not to…

Continue reading at:

Integrity, credibility and plagiarism | (Steve Wheeler)

Image by TilerX on FlickrI was in the audience at a recent conference when a keynote speaker (who will remain nameless) presented several of my images and ideas in his slideshow. The first was credited to me, and it was nice that he mentioned me as he was talking about the slide.

The following half a dozen or so slides were also from one of my presentations, but I was annoyed to see that my name and the Creative Commons licence I always apply to my slides had been removed.

The slide that annoyed me the most was a diagram that I had devised based on the ideas of another researcher. Not only…

Continue reading at:

Mythical beasts | (Steve Wheeler)

Image from Wikimedia CommonsLast week I posted a Twitter poll with the question: Which myth is the most damaging for learning? Before I reveal the results, here’s the reasoning behind the poll:

I am constantly amazed at the persistence of ‘mythical beasts’ in education. I call them mythical beasts, because they are like unicorns. They seem very attractive in appearance, but they don’t exist, and believing in them has no purpose other than to make you look foolish. They are the myths of education, and I want to know why they are so resilient.

Some educational myths are about the nature of…

Continue reading at:

Serendipity | (Steve Wheeler)

It was quite exciting to appear on the front cover of Training Journal this month. I was approached by the editor of the journal after my presentation in London at the Learning Technologies annual conference.

When she asked for an interview, I thought the brief video conversation that followed was it, but no – there was more to come. A written interview was next, and then a photoshoot (studio and external shots) with professional photographer Louise Sumner followed, and the result…. well, judge for yourself.

Here’s an excerpt from the interview, with me talking about ‘my road to success’,…

Continue reading at:

Belonging, friendship and learning | (Steve Wheeler)

Image from PixabayFlawed though it is, Maslow’s theory of motivation highlights at least one important theme: We are social beings and we need to know that we belong.

Belonging needs are complex and are sometimes misunderstood. Yet most teachers would agree that children who feel they belong will learn better than those that feel excluded. Feeling accepted as a member of a group brings psychological safety as well as a sense of acceptance. We want to be known, welcome, recognised by those around us. The power of peer approval cannot be underestimated, and often becomes the source and impetus…

Continue reading at:

It’s a complicated business…. | (Steve Wheeler)

Image from PexelsTwo recent articles have prompted a flurry of commentary on social media around the quality of learning in higher education.

The first, from the Times Higher Education Supplement was entitled ‘Academics fail to change teaching due to fear of looking stupid’. A year long study found that younger academics held on to strong ideas about what they considered to be ‘good pedagogy’, often because they had inherited these ideas from their own professors while studying at university. Generally, this was the traditional didactic method of standing up and delivering content. Other…

Continue reading at: