Photo of Mike Sharples

Prof Mike Sharples

Emeritus Professor

I have a first degree in Computational Science and a PhD from the Department of Artificial Intelligence at the University of Edinburgh. My research focus is human-centred design of environments for learning. My main current interest is to investigate 'citizen inquiry' - a fusion of citizen science and inquiry-based learning. I am leading development of the nQuire platform, in collaboration with the BBC, to support mass participation in social science experiments. As Academic Lead for FutureLearn (, I have worked with that company to develop their platform for massive scale online courses, based on a pedagogy of 'learning as conversation'. I have also been lead author on the Innovating Pedagogyannual reports, to inform teachers and policy makers about new developments in teaching, learning and assessment for a digital world.

Mike Sharples is Professor of Educational Technology in the Institute of Educational Technology at The Open University, UK. He also has a post as Academic Lead for the FutureLearn company. His research involves human-centred design of new technologies and environments for learning. He inaugurated the mLearn conference series and was Founding President of the International Association for Mobile Learning. He is Associate Editor in Chief of IEEE Transactions on Learning Technologies. He is lead author of the Innovating Pedagogy report series and author of over 300 papers in the areas of educational technology, science education, human-centred design of personal technologies, artificial intelligence and cognitive science.




  • Sharples, Mike and Spikol, Daniel (). Mobile learning. In: Duval, Erik; Sharples, Mike and Sutherland, Rosamund eds. Technology Enhanced Learning: Research Themes Springer International Publishing, pp. 89-96.




  • Sharples, Mike and Pea, Roy (). Mobile learning. In: Sawyer, R. Keith eds. The Cambridge Handbook of the Learning Sciences (Second edition) New York: Cambridge University Press, pp. 501-521.






  • Sharples , Mike ; Amedillo Sanchez, Inmaculada; Milrad, Marcelo and Vavoula , Giasemi (). Mobile learning: small devices, big issues. In: Balacheff, N.; Ludvigsen, S.; Jong , T. de and Barnes , S. eds. Technology Enhanced Learning: Principles and Products Heidelberg, Germany: Springer, pp. 233-249.


  • Rudman , Paul; Sharples , Mike ; Lonsdale, Peter; Vavoula, Giasemi and Meek, Julia (). Cross-context learning. In: Tallon , Loic and Walker , Kevin eds. Digital Technologies and the Museum Experience: Handheld Guides and Other Media Lanham MD, USA: Alta Mira Press, pp. 147-166.



Examining learning processes through the integration of two informal science learning approaches: Natural History Museum-led citizen science 2017 - 2021


Beyond Prototypes ESRC TEL Programme Report 2013
nQuire (nQuire: Young Citizen Inquiry) 2013 - 2014

Everything you need to know about MOOCs

HR Magazine | 14th July 2016

No room for sloppiness in online classroom

The Conversation | 16th January 2014

Online learning pioneer slams ban on Iranian, Cuban, Sudanese students

The Conversation | 20th March 2014



6th December 2017

New directions in personalized learning: Open, informal, social

International Conference on Computers and Education, ICCE 2017 Christchurch, New Zealand


12th September 2017

Designs for active learning

Active Learning Conference, 2017 Cambridge, UK


13th July 2017

Social Learning at Massive Scale

International Conference on Open and Innovative Education (ICOIE 2017) Hong Kong


17th February 2017

Educational innovation: uses of technologies to learn

International Colloquium on Educational Innovation and Academic Agency Mexico City


26th April 2016


16th October 2015

Social Learning at Massive Scale

Learning with MOOCs II - 2015 Columbia University & Teachers College


20th January 2015

Innovative Learning at Massive Scale

OpenMinds: Technology in Education The Open University, Milton Keynes

External Appointments