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Professor Martin Weller

Professor Martin Weller

Professor of Educational Technology

The Open University Institute of Educational Technology Professoriat

Martin's Blog


I've been involved in many of the OU's e-learning developments, including being director of the VLE, leading the SocialLearn project and chairing the first major online course (T171 with 12,000 students).  I am currently leading on a strategic project to bring a learning design approach to the University's module design systems, called Curriculum Business Models. 

My research area is in digital scholarship - I blog about this, and have recently written a book on the subject (published by Bloomsbury Academic under an open access licence). I have been involved in the open education movement for a number of years, being part of the original team that gained funding for the OpenLearn project. I have been the lead on a number of research projects in this area, including FLOSSCom (looking at open source models for education) and Sidecap (promoting open education resources in African, Caribbean and Pacific universities)

I'm a regular and reasonably well known blogger at



BSc (Hons) Psychology

MSc Artificial Intelligence

PhD Artificial Intelligence

Teaching Interests

I am currently authoring on two courses in the MAODE - H817, where my block focuses on open education and will be run as an open course (or a MOOC), which anyone can access, and H818, the project based course.

I chaired the Masters course H806 Learning in the Connected Economy. This was the first, and as it turned out last, course to be launched by the UK e-University. It was the first OU course to be developed purely as learning objects. I joined IET in 2002, but prior to that I worked in the Telematics department, in the Faculty of Technology at the OU. My main work there was on the course T171, You, your computer and the Net. I chaired the production and presentation of the initial course and later co-chaired it. I also authored two of the modules. The course was based entirely online and had around 12,000 students annually. I also worked on T396 Artificial Intelligence for Technology which was my first course at the OU. I have also authored on H807 and H808.

Research Interests

Most of my research falls under the broad category of digital scholarship:

The impact of new technology on academic practice

Changing nature of academic identity in a networked world

Open education - the uptake of OERs, implementation of MOOCs, etc

I've published quite a few papers and three books, so if you're interested, see the publications page.


Authored Book
Weller, Martin (2011). The Digital Scholar: How Technology Is Transforming Scholarly Practice. Basingstoke: Bloomsbury Academic.
Weller, Martin (2007). Virtual Learning Environments: Using, Choosing and Developing your VLE. Oxford, UK: Routledge.
Weller, Martin (2002). Delivering Learning on the Net: the why, what and how of online education. Open and Flexible Learning. London, UK: RoutledgeFalmer.
Book Chapter
Weller, Martin and Dalziel, James (2009). Bridging the gap between Web 2.0 and higher education. In: Hatzipanagos, Stylianos and Warburton, Steven eds. Handbook of Research on Social Software and Developing Community Ontologies. PA, USA: IGI, pp. 1659–1671.
Weller, Martin (2003). E-learning. In: Jones, D. C. ed. The New economy handbook. San Diego, USA: Academic Press, pp. 1044–1068.
Conference Item
Weller, Martin (2010). Big and little OER. In: OpenED2010: Seventh Annual Open Education Conference, 2-4 November 2010, Barcelona, Spain.
Conole, Grainne ; Brasher, Andrew ; Cross, Simon ; Weller, Martin ; Nixon, Stewart ; Clark, Paul and Petit, John (2008). A new methodology for learning design. In: Proceedings of World Conference on Educational Multimedia, Hypermedia and Telecommunications (EDMEDIA), 30 June - 4 July 2008, Vienna.
Cross, Simon ; Conole, Grainne ; Clark, Paul ; Brasher, Andrew and Weller, Martin (2008). Mapping a landscape of learning design: Identifying key trends in current practice at the Open University. In: 2008 European LAMS Conference, 25-27 June 2008, Cadiz, Spain.
Brasher, Andrew ; Conole, Gráinne ; Cross, Simon ; Weller, Martin ; Clark, Paul and White, Juliette (2008). CompendiumLD – a tool for effective, efficient and creative learning design. In: Proceedings of the 2008 European LAMS Conference: Practical Benefits of Learning Design, 25-27 June 2008, Cadiz, Spain.
Journal Article
Weller, Martin and Anderson, Terry (2013). Digital resilience in higher education. European Journal of Open, Distance and e-Learning, 16(1), p. 53.
Weller, Martin (2012). Digital scholarship and the tenure process as an indicator of change in universities. RUSC. Universities and Knowledge Society Journal, 9(2), pp. 347–360.
Weller, Martin (2012). The openness-creativity cycle in education: a perpsective. Journal of Interactive Media in Education
Weller, Martin (2011). A pedagogy of abundance. Spanish Journal of Pedagogy, 249 pp. 223–236.
Siemens, George and Weller, Martin (2011). Higher education and the promises and perils of social network. Revista de Universidad y Sociedad del Conocimiento (RUSC), 8(1), pp. 164–170.
Pearce, Nick ; Weller, Martin ; Scanlon, Eileen and Kinsley, Samuel (2010). Digital scholarship considered: how new technologies could transform academic work. In Education, 16(1),
Weller, Martin (2010). The centralisation dilemma in educational IT. International Journal of Virtual and Personal Learning Environments, 1(1), pp. 1–9.
Weller, Martin (2009). Using learning environments as a metaphor for educational change. On the Horizon, 17(3), pp. 181–189.
Conole, Grainne ; Brasher, Andrew ; Cross, Simon ; Weller, Martin ; Clark, Paul and Culver, Juliette (2008). Visualising learning design to foster and support good practice and creativity. Educational Media International, 45(3), pp. 177–194.
Conole, Grainne and Weller, Martin (2008). Using learning design as a framework for supporting the design and reuse of OER. Journal of Interactive Media in Education, 5
Weller, Martin (2007). The distance from isolation: Why communities are the logical conclusion in e-learning. Computers and Education, 49(2), pp. 148–159.
Weller, Martin (2007). Learning objects, learning design, and adoption through succession. Journal of Computing in Higher Education, 19(1), pp. 26–47.
McAndrew, Patrick ; Weller, Martin and Barret-Baxendale, Mark (2006). Learning Design and Service Oriented Architectures:a mutual dependency? Journal of Learning Design, 1(3), pp. 51–60.
Weller, Martin ; Little, Alex ; McAndrew, Patrick and Woods, Will (2006). Learning Design, generic service descriptions and universal acid. Educational Technology and Society, 9(1), pp. 138–145.
Weller, Martin ; Mason, Robin and Pegler, Chris (2005). Students’ experience of component versus integrated Virtual Learning Environments. Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, 21(4), pp. 253–259.
Mason, R D ; Pegler, C A and Weller, M J (2005). A learning object success story. Journal of Asynchronous Learning Networks, 9(1), pp. 97–105.
Weller, Martin ; Pegler, Chris and Mason, Robin (2005). Use of innovative technologies on an e-learning course. The Internet and Higher Education, 8(1), pp. 61–71.
Mason, Robin ; Pegler, Chris and Weller, Martin (2004). E-portfolios: an assessment tool for online courses. British Journal of Educational Technology, 35(6), pp. 717–727.
Weller, Martin and Robinson, Ley (2002). Scaling up an online course to deal with 12,000 students. Education, Communication and Information, 1(3), pp. 307–323.
Weller, Martin (2002). Assessment issues on a web-based course. Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education, 27(2), pp. 109–116.
MacDonald, Janet; Weller, Martin and Mason, Robin (2002). Meeting the assessment demands of networked courses. International Journal on E-Learning, 1(1), pp. 9–18.
Weller, Martin J. (2000). The use of narrative to provide a cohesive structure for a web based computing course. Journal of Interactive Media in Education(1),
de los Arcos, B. ; Farrow, R. ; Perryman, L.-A. ; Pitt, R. and Weller, M. (2014). OER Evidence Report 2013-2014. OER Research Hub.
Cross, Simon ; Galley, Rebecca ; Brasher, Andrew and Weller, Martin (2012). OULDI-JISC Project Evaluation Report: the impact of new curriulum design tools and approaches on institutional process and design cultures. OULDI Project (Open University).
Weller, Martin (2012). The Virtues of Blogging as Scholarly Activity. Chronicle of Higher Education, US.

Blog posts


The network corrections

(doesn’t make cloud pun) At the Open University we get a ‘study leave’ allowance every year, which was meant to replace the traditional summer breaks enjoyed by academics at campus universities. I try to take mine in December and January every year, last year it was when I wrote the Battle for Open book. This Continue reading


The stories in the legs

For the past five years I’ve done an end of year review of my running (2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013) . It’s the only running post I do now, and I usually add some philosophical rambling to justify it. I’d like to do it again this year, to carry on my own little tradition, but Continue reading


Double book launch online

Tomorrow (Dec 16th) at 3pm UK time I’m doing an online book launch for my Battle For Open book. I’m sharing it with Martin Eve, who will be talking about his Open Access and the Humanities book also. If you’re interested in openness, open access, books, or just want to procrastinate, then please join us, Continue reading


Why a book?

Did I mention my Battle for Open book is out? I SAID DID I MENTION MY BOOK IS OUT. Ahem. Audrey Watters asks why a book, and it’s a question I asked myself with my last book. Here are some thoughts on the process of writing it, and how it relates to blogs and other Continue reading


Models for book publishing

If you’re into edtech/open education (and who isn’t?) then your cup runneth over these last couple of weeks with books to read. There are four I’ll highlight (including mine!) and they represent different approaches to writing and publishing, so they make a nice comparison. First up is Martin Eve’s Open Access and the Humanities. Martin Continue reading


Better than Christmas – OER Research hub report

The OER Research Hub completed its second annual report for the founders, the Hewlett Foundation in September. It plots the evidence we’ve gained against the 11 hypotheses of the project. It’s not the final report which we will deliver next year, but it has some very interesting findings. We have over 6000 survey responses from Continue reading


Innovating Pedagogy report 2014

It’s been slightly over a year since the last Innovating Pedagogy report, and 2014’s edition is now available. As before it was written by a small team in IET at the OU. The remit is to look at technology related innovations, but with more of a teaching and learning perspective than some of the technical Continue reading


JIME, Ubiquity & OA models

I’m a co-editor of JIME at the Open University. It’s had a long tradition here, started in KMi it piloted open peer review, using it’s own software back in the late 90s. It has always been open access, and when maintaining our own software became a burden, it switched to using the open source system Continue reading



I read Michael Lewis’s Moneyball over the summer (you’ve probably seen the Brad Pitt adaptation). It’s a great account of how stripping baseball down to the stats allowed a small team to compete against teams with much larger budgets. What is particularly intriguing is how this multi-million dollar industry was basically doing it all wrong. Continue reading


Open by default

I’ve heard this phrase a few times, often in relation to open data eg. the open data charter. I think it’s a useful starting position for those in higher ed, across all aspects of practice. That is, assume you should be operating openly, and only if there are valid reasons not to, shift away from Continue reading

Other Interests

I'm a mediocre runner, I take photographs over at blip or flickr, and I'm studying for an MA in History.

last updated 06-Jul-2012