Photo of Simon Cross

Dr Simon Cross MA, PhD, PGCE, FRGS

Senior Lecturer

I am a Senior Lecturer in the Institute of Educational Technology and currently have responsibility for the Institute's Quality Enhancement and Innovations (QEI) Portfolio as Associate Director (QE). This comprises four areas of work: pan-university pedagogic insights, innovative analytics and methodologies, educational technology evaluation, and ongoing QE process support. A team of academic and academic-related staff contribute to the programme and projects are developed working closely with university faculties and units.

My research interests presently include:

(1) Digital Badge for Learning - how badges and micro-achievements can perform an essential formative role in online learning and how the implementation and awarding of badges can operate in diverse contexts. I currently lead a GCRF funded project in India working with TISS (Mumbai) exploring digital badges for teacher education and professional development.

(2) Student Experience of Assessment, Revision and Feedback - I am academic lead for a strategic project reviewing distance student experience of online assessment. A recent survey sent to a sample of over 6,000 learners is intended to explore themes such quality and satisfaction, dialogic feedback and learner agency, process transparency, strategic learning, social reach and assessment networks, and confidence in assessment literacy and academic writing. The project aims to understand differences between groups (subject, BAME, level, study intensity) and identify practice challenges and opportunities.

(3) 360-degree video for Teacher Education - I have led fieldwork in India exploring the potential of 360-degree recording and viewing on mobile VR headsets for teacher professional learning and educational research. 

Dr Simon Cross is a lecturer at The Open University (UK). His current research interests include embedding open and online learning, the contextualised experience of MOOCs, VR, student experience and perceptions of learning gain and assessment, learning design, and mobile learning. He is an academic author on the university’s MA in Online and Distance Learning and has led projects aligned to strategic learning and teaching programmes. Simon has worked on nine externally funded projects since joining the university and has presented at many international conferences.

















Digital Badges for Teacher Professional Development in India 2019 - 2021


A longitudinal mixed method study of learning gain: applying Affective-Behaviour Cognition framework at 3 institutions 2015 - 2018


Invited Talk

18th July 2019

Digital Badges and Learning Design for teacher professional development

Research Seminar Series, Centre for Education Innovation and Action Research Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai, India

Conference Presentation

1st July 2019

Invited Talk

26th June 2019

Conference Presentation

18th June 2019

Invited Talk

21st March 2019


30th January 2019


22nd January 2019

Introducing Digital Badges for Learning

Digital Badges Symposium Delhi, India (via remote link)

Conference Presentation

7th November 2018

Conference Presentation

16th December 2017

Effective use of MOOCs in English and Hindi for teacher training in India

Transforming Education for Humanity (TECH) Conference Visakhapatnam, India

Conference Presentation

8th December 2017

How do students understand and interpret learning gains? Perspectives from in-depth interviews

Society of Research into Higher Education (SRHE) Conference Newport, Wales


10th February 2017

Designing effective exam revision experiences

New Technologies in Education Belgrade


10th February 2017

Improving student retention using TEL and course design

New Technologies in Education Conference

Conference Presentation

7th June 2016


26th February 2016

Making the most of learning analytics: achieving impact

New Technologies in Education Conference Belgrade

Invited Talk

26th February 2016

Emerging patterns in distance learners' use of mobile devices

New Technologies in Education Conference Belgrade

Invited Talk

20th January 2016

Conference Presentation

26th November 2014

Invited Talk

5th March 2014

Badges for Learning: a review of the formative role of badges in two open online courses

Link: Online

Conference Presentation

13th June 2012

Defining the learning design problem space: creating a better learning solution

International Blended Learning Conference Herefordshire