This webpage is under construction (June 2020). 


Project title: Active online reading in History 


The research project, entitled ‘Active online reading in History’ derives from a two-year collaboration between Dr Jamie Wood, the Principal Investigator (PI) and Matt East, the Product Manager of Talis Elevate. We began trialling the Talis Elevate tool in the School of History and Heritage at the University of Lincoln in 2018-19, before it was purchased by the institution in 2019-20. During this initial collaboration, the concept of ‘active online reading’ (AOR) has increasingly come to structure our thinking on the tool and the approaches to teaching and learning that have been adopted in the School.

The project has received approval from the University of Lincoln Ethics Committee (project no. 2404).


Image of real gabinete library in Rio de JaneiroThe ‘active online reading’ (AOR) approach, supported through Talis Elevate, has proven to be a powerful tool for driving student learning outside and within the classroom. This research project formalises the process of evaluating its impact, with the aim of presenting at conferences and publishing findings in peer-reviewed journals and other publications, as well as in more open fora such as blog posts. Analysis of how staff and students manage the shift to online learning is particularly pertinent in the current context of a global lockdown and academic teachers in reading-intensive Humanities disciplines are in need of (a) tools that enable them to develop student learning in non-transmission-based ways and (b) an evidence-based pedagogy to so doing (= AOR). This project aims to address this gap through analysis of the utility AOR pedagogies underpinned by Talis Elevate that have been developed in History and Heritage at the University of Lincoln.


Initially, the project will adopt a mixed-methods approach, comprising three key elements: staff and student questionnaires, and Elevate usage data gathered by Talis.

Research questions

  • What is the impact of active online reading (AOR) on student learning in History and associated disciplines?
  • What pedagogic approaches to AOR are particularly effective in History and associated disciplines?
  • What roles does Talis Elevate play in supporting AOR in History and associated disciplines?
  • To what extent did the COVID lockdown period increase usage of the Talis Elevate tool (e.g. use by teaching staff, time or annotation-based engagement by students)?
  • What other technologies can play a role in supporting AOR in History and associated disciplines?