Combining traditional learning theories, such as constructivism, cognitivism and behaviourism, with contemporary theories such as connectivism, gives us the foundation on which to develop successful models for online and blended learning.

Based on these theories, other models have been developed to underpin TEL pedagogy; on this page we’ll take a look at just three of them: Mayes and Fowler’s (1999) Conceptualisation Cycle, Laurillard’s (2002) Conversational Framework, and Salmon’s (2011) Five Stage Model.

As Conole (2010) suggests, models or frameworks, such as these, can be used as a type of schema to help mentally align to a particular pedagogical approach. Alternatively, they can be used directly to help guide the design of a learning activity or course, to help guide design decisions about what kinds of learning activities would be appropriate to promote the pedagogical approach instantiated in the model or framework. They can be used to guide the development of a learning environment, or they can be used as direct representations to the students, to help guide their learning process, or as analytic or descriptive tools to describe practice.

If you are interested in finding out more about how we can help you apply these models and frameworks then please contact TEL@yorksj.ac.uk.


Conole, G. 2010. Review of pedagogical models and frameworks. [Online, licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0]. Accessed 8 October 2015. Available fromhttp://cloudworks.ac.uk/cloud/view/2982

Laurillard, D. 2002. Rethinking University Teaching. A conversational framework for the effective use of learning technologies. London: Routledge

Mayes, J.T. & Fowler, C.J.H. 1999. Learning technology and usability: a framework for understanding courseware. Interacting with Computers. 11, pp. 485-497

Salmon, G. 2013. E-tivities: The Key to Active Online Learning. 2nd ed. New York: Routledge

Salmon, G. 2011. E-moderating: The key to teaching and learning online. 3rd ed. New York: Routledge

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