About Vic Lally


Vic Lally

Researching Learning

The recently completed InterLife Project (ESRC/EPSRC) took a detailed look at informal learning, virtual worlds, and creativity, and worked extensively with young people to help them develop their own research agendas.

The main findings and ideas are presented in a series of papers, mostly available as OPEN ACCESS publications. See the page Inter-Life Key Publications

[I apologise for the temporary unavailability of this page during December 2015/January 2016]

Featured Paper

Each month I’m taking a paper from my publications list and briefly reflecting on it here

Featured Special Issues

Researching Transitions in Learning and Education: Research in Comparative and International EducationDecember 2012; 7 (4)

‘The purpose of this special issue is to stimulate a new conversation using radical international perspectives on transitions in learning – formal and informal – experienced by young people, and reported in this eclectic collection of articles. One of the key challenges is to understand how we might re-theorise transition using these international perspectives as critical tools.’ (p.394)


New Publications

Madeleine Sclater & Vic Lally (2016): Critical perspectives on TEL: art and design education, theory, communities and space, Interactive Learning Environments, http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10494820.2015.1128210

This paper explores three themes, emerging from the Inter-Life project, an Art and Design education and social skills project set in a virtual world. We argue that they connect with the concerns raised by critical Technology-Enhanced Learning (TEL) researchers at the Alpine Rendezvous workshop entitled “TEL: the Crisis and the Response.” The first theme focuses on theory and TEL. We consider Cultural Historical Activity Theory, but we strongly feel that our argument has broader application as part of the intellectual “self-defence toolkit” that researchers and practitioners in the critical TEL community need if they are to “resist” the crises arising from educational globalisation. A second theme relates to the importance of working together in research communities and joint enterprises, focused on using a joint set of tools to investigate an issue or set of issues in a systematic way. In our final theme, we focus on the significance of learning spaces. They are part of the “intellectual toolkit” with which critical TEL researchers can resist the subordination of our ideas and work to globalised interests.

Traxler, J., & Lally, V. (2016). The crisis and the response: After the dust had settled. Interactive Learning Environments, 1-9. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10494820.2015.1128216

This is a reflective paper that concludes a forthcoming special issue of Interactive Learning Environments: TEL – the crisis and the response.  The papers in the issue arose from the ARV seminar of the same name in January 2013.


I’m a writer, researcher and academic whose main interest is human learning: its ‘design’, philosophy and ethics, as well as the cultural and political contexts of learning. I’m particularly interested in collaborative learning as a way of supporting human creativity and development.

My research activities are in the fields of Technology Enhanced Learning (TEL), Computer Supported Collaborative Learning (CSCL) and learning in three-dimensional and mobile environments.  I have written over 100 papers and articles, and been Director/co-director of 17 national and international projects, as well as editing/co-authoring 4 books.

I have researched and co-developed many collaborative designs, including projects for the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC, UK) and Higher Education Funding Council (HEFCE, England). I am based at the University of Glasgow, UK, where I am Chair of the Interdisciplinary Learning, Education, Technology and Society Research Group (see www.ilets.eu).

My current research interests are focused on:

  • Innovative approaches to educational and social justice interventions using advanced technologies for learning
  • Meeting economic and social needs with advanced learning technologies
  • Developing communities for learning and social development  with advanced technologies
  • Ethical aspects of technology enhanced learning
  • Developing virtual environments to support and enhance psychological well-being
  • Advanced research methodologies for investigating learning, communities,
  • Strategic international and interdisciplinary working in Europe, China, Asia and Africa
  • Working in a wide range of subject contexts including sciences, mathematics and applied computing

I have worked extensively in China and Europe, and Africa.  My latest project, ‘Inter-Life’ (ESRC/EPSRC – 2008-2011 under the Technology Enhanced Learning Programme) was a key investigation of the learning of life transition skills by young people, using highly innovative three-dimensional online tools and environments, and a range of analytical techniques that I have researched and developed in an extensive  programme.

I am presently adding recent conference papers, selected papers from my journal publications, book chapters, and recent projects (see links).  These sections are ‘a work in progress’ but I am getting them up-to-date as quickly as possible.

Recent Research Publications

See also citations from Google Scholar, and a search from Google Scholar

Traxler, J., & Lally, V. (2016). The crisis and the response: After the dust had settled. Interactive Learning Environments, 1-9. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10494820.2015.1128216

Sclater, M. and Lally, V. (2014)  The Realities of Researching Alongside Virtual Youth in Late Modernity: Creative Practices and Activity Theory. Journal of Youth Studies 17 (1) 1-25 http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13676261.2013.847908#.UmksQRa23fY   [OPEN ACCESS]

Funded by EPSRC/ESRC RES-139-25-0402.

Sclater, M. and Lally, V. (2013) Virtual Voices: Exploring Creative Practices to Support Life Skills Development among Young People Working in a Virtual World Community. International Journal of Art & Design Education  32 (3) 331–344. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1476-8070.2013.12024.x [OPEN ACCESS]

Funded by EPSRC/ESRC RES-139-25-0402.

Lally, V, and Sclater, M. (2013) The Inter-Life Project: Researching the Potential of Art, Design and Virtual Worlds As a Vehicle for Assisting Young People with Key Life Changes and Transitions. British Journal of Guidance and Counselling 41 (3) pp 1-17. http://dx.DOI.org/10.1080/03069885.2013.773582 [OPEN ACCESS]

Funded by EPSRC/ESRC RES-139-25-0402.

Devlin, A. M., Lally, V., Sclater, M. and Parussel, K. (2013) Inter-Life: A Novel, Three-dimensional, Virtual Learning Environment for Life Transition Skills Learning. Interactive Learning Environments 21 pp 1-22. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10494820.2013.768271. [OPEN ACCESS]

Funded by EPSRC/ESRC RES-139-25-0402.

Lally, V. (2013) Computing and Information Systems Education. In Bryce, T. and Humes, EW. M. (Eds.) Scottish Education (4th Edition) Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, pp 544-548.

Devlin, A.M., Lally, V., Canavan, B. & Magill, J.,( 2013) The role of the Inter-Life virtual world as a creative technology to support student transition into higher education, Creative Education, 4(7b), pp. 191-201 http://dx.doi.org/10.4236/ce.2013.47A2025 [OPEN ACCESS]

Funded by EPSRC/ESRC RES-139-25-0402.

Lally, V., and M. Sclater, M. (2012) The Inter-Life Project: Inter-cultural Spaces for Young People to Use Creative Practices and Research to Assist with Life Changes and Transition.  Research in Comparative and International Education 7 (4) 480-502.  http://dx.doi.org/10.2304/rcie.2012.7.4.480

Funded by EPSRC/ESRC RES-139-25-0402.

Lally, V. and Doyle, L. (2012) Researching Transitions in Learning and Education: international perspectives on complex challenges and imaginative solutions (Editorial).  Research in Comparative and International Education, 7(4), 394-408.  http://dx.doi.org/10.2304/rcie.2012.7.4.394 (available for free download)

Funded by EPSRC/ESRC RES-139-25-0402.

Lally, V, Sharples, M. Frances Tracy, F., Bertram, N. and Masters, S. (2012) Researching the Ethical Dimensions of Mobile, Ubiquitous and Immersive Technology Enhanced Learning (MUITEL): A Thematic Review and Dialogue. Interactive Learning Environments 20 (3 ) pp 217-238. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10494820.2011.607829

Funded by EPSRC/ESRC RES-139-25-0402.


Now that the current group of papers from our present series is published I am working with others on new publications in the TEL field.

Research in Comparative and International Education (ISSN 1745-4999) Volume 7 Number 4 2012
Researching Transitions in Learning and Education: international perspectives on complex challenges and imaginative solutions: Guest Editors: VIC LALLY & LESLEY DOYLE

Funded by EPSRC/ESRC RES-139-25-0402.

Research Monograph

 Lally, V., Sharples, M., Bertram, N., Masters, S., Norton, B., Tracy, F. (2010) Mobile, Ubiquitous and Immersive Technology Enhanced Learning: an ethical perspective. ESRC/EPSRC: London ISBN 978-0-85473-911-0

Funded by EPSRC/ESRC RES-139-25-0402.

Research Conferences

Lally, V., Sclater, M. (2010)  Inter-Life: Community, Identity and Transition through Creative Engagement.  European Conference on Educational Research, Network 16: ICT in Education and Training, Session 16 SES 03 B, ICT in Adult Education (Paper) [25 08 2010] ECER 2010 summary available at:http://www.eera.de/ecer-programmes/conference/ecer-2010/contribution/1723-2/?no_cache=1&cHash=2e9a1dc1cd. Paper available here. ECER 2010 presentation available here

Funded by EPSRC/ESRC RES-139-25-0402.

Bowskill, N., Brindley, S., Cutts, Q., Lally, V. & Draper, S. (2010). Shared Thinking as a Community Model of Induction and Transition. Global Learn 2010. Penang, Malaysia.

Bowskill, N., Cutts, Q., Brindley, S., Lally, V. & Draper, S. (2010). “Am I Alone in Thinking..?” Overcoming student concerns and isolation using a Shared Thinking approach for FIMS Induction. 3rd Annual University of Glasgow Learning and Teaching Conference. University of Glasgow.

Bowskill, N., Draper, S., Cutts, Q., Lally, V. & Brindley, S. (2011). Shared Thinking and Interactionist Pedagogy. Society of Australasian Social Psychologists 41st Annual Conference. Manly, Australia.

Bowskill, N., Lally, V., Cutts, Q., Brindley, S. & Draper, S. (2011). Collective Reflection and Shared Thinking 8th Enhancement Themes Conference: Graduates for the 21st Century: Integrating the Enhancement Themes. Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh.

Devlin AM, Lally V, Sclater M, Parussel K: “The Development of Life Transition Skills in Inter-Life:  A Novel, 3-dimensional Virtual Learning Environment.” Presented at the 9th international conference on Computer Supported Collaborative Learning (CSCL), University of Hong Kong, China, July 4-8, 2011In Spada, H., Stahl, G., Miyake, N., Law, N. (Eds.) (2011) Connecting Computer-Supported Collaborative Learning to Policy and Practice: CSCL 2011 Conference Proceedings. Volume II – pp 874-875. © International Society of the LearningSciences.  Available online at:http://www.isls.org/cscl2011/doc/CSCL2011ProceedingsVol2.pdf.

Research Seminars/Talks

Ethical Challenges and Prospect.  Brave New Worlds – The Ethics of Education in Popular Digital Technologies’
Wednesday 27 October 2010, Caledonian Room, Room H113, William Harley Building
Glasgow Caledonian University, Cowcaddens Road, Glasgow, G4 0BA

Research Report

Lowden, K., Hall, S., Lally, V. & Mancy, R. (2011) SSERC’s Support for Science Education in Scotland through CPD. External Evaluation Final Report – February 2011. SSERC (Scottish Schools Education Research Centre) ISBN 978-0-9531776-5-3

Creative Commons Licence
This work by http://viclally.eu/viclally is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Last update 30 March 2016

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