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Professor Martin James Weller

Profile summary

  • Central Academic Staff
  • Professor of Educational Technology
  • Institute of Educational Technology
  • Professoriat
  • martin.weller

Professional biography

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


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.

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 Activity

Research groups

NameTypeParent Unit
Technology and Learning Research Group (TLRG)GroupInstitute of Educational Technology


Impact of OER use on teaching and learning: data from OER Research Hub (2013–2014) (2015-09)
Farrow, Robert; Pitt, Rebecca; de los Arcos, Beatriz; Perryman, Leigh-Anne; Weller, Martin and McAndrew, Patrick
British Journal of Educational Technology, 46(5) (pp. 972-976)
MOOCs and the Silicon Valley Narrative (2015-04-10)
Weller, Martin
Journal of Interactive Media in Education, 2015(1) (pp. 1-7)
The potential social, economic and environmental benefits of MOOCs: operational and historical comparisons with a massive ‘closed online’ course (2014-04)
Lane, Andy; Caird, Sally and Weller, Martin
Open Praxis, 6(2) (pp. 115-123)
The Battle for Open - a perspective (2013-12-03)
Weller, Martin
Journal of Interactive Media in Education, 2013(3)
Digital resilience in higher education (2013-03-21)
Weller, Martin and Anderson, Terry
European Journal of Open, Distance and e-Learning, 16(1) (p 53)
Digital scholarship and the tenure process as an indicator of change in universities (2012-07)
Weller, Martin
RUSC. Universities and Knowledge Society Journal, 9(2) (pp. 347-360)
The openness-creativity cycle in education: a perpsective (2012-04)
Weller, Martin
Journal of Interactive Media in Education
A pedagogy of abundance (2011-05)
Weller, Martin
Spanish Journal of Pedagogy, 249 (pp. 223-236)
Higher education and the promises and perils of social network (2011-01)
Siemens, George and Weller, Martin
Revista de Universidad y Sociedad del Conocimiento (RUSC), 8(1) (pp. 164-170)
Digital scholarship considered: how new technologies could transform academic work (2010-05)
Pearce, Nick; Weller, Martin; Scanlon, Eileen and Kinsley, Samuel
In Education, 16(1)
The centralisation dilemma in educational IT (2010)
Weller, Martin
International Journal of Virtual and Personal Learning Environments, 1(1) (pp. 1-9)
Using learning environments as a metaphor for educational change (2009)
Weller, Martin
On the Horizon, 17(3) (pp. 181-189)
Visualising learning design to foster and support good practice and creativity (2008)
Conole, Grainne; Brasher, Andrew; Cross, Simon; Weller, Martin; Clark, Paul and Culver, Juliette
Educational Media International, 45(3) (pp. 177-194)
Using learning design as a framework for supporting the design and reuse of OER (2008)
Conole, Grainne and Weller, Martin
Journal of Interactive Media in Education, 5
The distance from isolation: Why communities are the logical conclusion in e-learning (2007-09)
Weller, Martin
Computers and Education, 49(2) (pp. 148-159)
Learning objects, learning design, and adoption through succession (2007)
Weller, Martin
Journal of Computing in Higher Education, 19(1) (pp. 26-47)
Learning Design and Service Oriented Architectures:a mutual dependency? (2006)
McAndrew, Patrick; Weller, Martin and Barret-Baxendale, Mark
Journal of Learning Design, 1(3) (pp. 51-60)
Learning Design, generic service descriptions and universal acid (2006)
Weller, Martin; Little, Alex; McAndrew, Patrick and Woods, Will
Educational Technology and Society, 9(1) (pp. 138-145)
Students’ experience of component versus integrated Virtual Learning Environments (2005-08)
Weller, Martin; Mason, Robin and Pegler, Chris
Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, 21(4) (pp. 253-259)
A learning object success story (2005-03)
Mason, R D; Pegler, C A and Weller, M J
Journal of Asynchronous Learning Networks, 9(1) (pp. 97-105)
Use of innovative technologies on an e-learning course (2005)
Weller, Martin; Pegler, Chris and Mason, Robin
The Internet and Higher Education, 8(1) (pp. 61-71)
E-portfolios: an assessment tool for online courses (2004-11)
Mason, Robin; Pegler, Chris and Weller, Martin
British Journal of Educational Technology, 35(6) (pp. 717-727)
Scaling up an online course to deal with 12,000 students (2002-04-01)
Weller, Martin and Robinson, Ley
Education, Communication and Information, 1(3) (pp. 307-323)
Assessment issues on a web-based course (2002-03-01)
Weller, Martin
Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education, 27(2) (pp. 109-116)
Meeting the assessment demands of networked courses (2002)
MacDonald, Janet; Weller, Martin and Mason, Robin
International Journal on E-Learning, 1(1) (pp. 9-18)
The use of narrative to provide a cohesive structure for a web based computing course (2000-08-15)
Weller, Martin J.
Journal of Interactive Media in Education(1)
The Battle for Open: How openness won and why it doesn't feel like victory (2014-11)
Weller, Martin
Publisher : Ubiquity Press | Published : London
The Digital Scholar: How Technology Is Transforming Scholarly Practice (2011-09)
Weller, Martin
ISBN : 9781849664974 | Publisher : Bloomsbury Academic | Published : Basingstoke
Virtual Learning Environments: Using, Choosing and Developing your VLE (2007-02)
Weller, Martin
ISBN : 041541430X | Publisher : Routledge | Published : Oxford, UK
Delivering Learning on the Net: the why, what and how of online education (2002-06-01)
Weller, Martin
Open and Flexible Learning
ISBN : 749436751 | Publisher : RoutledgeFalmer | Published : London, UK
Bridging the gap between Web 2.0 and higher education (2009)
Weller, Martin and Dalziel, James
In: Hatzipanagos, Stylianos and Warburton, Steven eds. Handbook of Research on Social Software and Developing Community Ontologies (pp. 1659-1671)
ISBN : 978-1-60566-208-4 | Publisher : IGI | Published : PA, USA
E-learning (2003-10-13)
Weller, Martin
In: Jones, D. C. ed. The New economy handbook (pp. 1044-1068)
ISBN : 123891728 | Publisher : Academic Press | Published : San Diego, USA
Big and little OER (2010-11)
Weller, Martin
In : OpenED2010: Seventh Annual Open Education Conference (2-4 November 2010, Barcelona, Spain)
A new methodology for learning design (2008-07)
Conole, Grainne; Brasher, Andrew; Cross, Simon; Weller, Martin; Nixon, Stewart; Clark, Paul and Petit, John
In : Proceedings of World Conference on Educational Multimedia, Hypermedia and Telecommunications (EDMEDIA) (30 June - 4 July 2008, Vienna)
Mapping a landscape of learning design: Identifying key trends in current practice at the Open University (2008-06)
Cross, Simon; Conole, Grainne; Clark, Paul; Brasher, Andrew and Weller, Martin
In : 2008 European LAMS Conference (25-27 June 2008, Cadiz, Spain)
CompendiumLD – a tool for effective, efficient and creative learning design (2008)
Brasher, Andrew; Conole, Gráinne; Cross, Simon; Weller, Martin; Clark, Paul and White, Juliette
In : Proceedings of the 2008 European LAMS Conference: Practical Benefits of Learning Design (25-27 June 2008, Cadiz, Spain)
OER Evidence Report 2013-2014 (2014-11-20)
de los Arcos, B.; Farrow, R.; Perryman, L.-A.; Pitt, R. and Weller, M.
OER Research Hub
OULDI-JISC Project Evaluation Report: the impact of new curriulum design tools and approaches on institutional process and design cultures (2012-07-31)
Cross, Simon; Galley, Rebecca; Brasher, Andrew and Weller, Martin
OULDI Project (Open University)
The Virtues of Blogging as Scholarly Activity (2012-04-29)
Weller, Martin
Chronicle of Higher Education, US.