Dave Darwent

Dave Darwent MA, BSc (Hons), SFHEA

Senior Lecturer: E-Learning Technologist, and Course Leader: PGCert Digital Teaching & Learning


As an E-Learning Technologist I provide support, guidance and instruction for staff in the Sheffield Institute of Education in the implementation and use of E-Learning tools and Digital Solutions to enhance teaching and learning in their programmes and modules.

As course leader of the Post-Graduate Certificate in Digital Teaching & Learning I manage a course team of E-Learning and Teaching specialists and we deliver a four-module fully distance-learning programme at Level 7, which rapidly develops participants pedagogical knowledge, experience and skills in digital teaching and learning.


I’ve taught in Higher Education since 2013 and prior to that I taught in schools and Sixth Form Colleges for almost twenty years, mostly as head of ICT (schools) and Deputy Director (post-16 sector), although I did spend the first four years of my teaching career as a mathematics teacher.

I have overseen significant change projects, including a brand new whole-school I.T. system from network infrastructure, hardware and applications / software to staff training and development using the new system; and also the introduction of many new digital solutions and staff training to use them whilst working in the Sixth Form College environment.

I have always worked closely with Teacher Education, almost exclusively SHU provision, and for many years was Senior Mentor Co-ordinator in a college hosting up to twenty trainees per year. I took my own PGCE at Sheffield Hallam, where I also studied for my first degree (BSc Mathematics with Education) and more recently my Masters Degree in Education.

Prior to my first degree I worked for eight years in retail management.


Department of Teacher Education

College of Social Sciences and Arts

I have a wide range of teaching interests, but the embedding of Mathematics, the use of Digital Technology and how learners are given feedback and praise are particular interests within the ITE curriculum

Department of Education, Childhood and Inclusion
Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities

I have a wide range of teaching interests, but the embedding of Mathematics, the use of Digital Technology, assessment vehicles & methods and how learners are given feedback & praise are particular interests.


I propose to commence doctoral study within the next year, with a provisional title of "Marking to fail or facilitating success: an investigation into approaches to assessment, focussing on the use of assessment criteria.

Publication: EDWARDS, Martyn, DARWENT, Dave and IRONS, Charly (2015). 'That blasted Facebook page': supporting trainee-teachers' professional learning through social media. Computers and Society, 45 (3), 420-426.

Working with the same collaborators I also carried out research into the embedding of Professional Standards into ITE.

I have researched how (or whether) teachers are trained to offer meaningful praise and recognition to learners and whether praise and recognition are significant in maintaining learner engagement. This lead to being designer and leader of a Faculty LTA Project on Praise and feedback in collaboration with Sheffield United Community Foundation, New College Pontefract and Birkdale School.

I carried out collaborative research and writing for BERA 2017 symposium: “University teacher education and teacher educators: trust, agency and leadership in changing systems”.

In 2017 I was a LEAD associate with a research project on modes and models of feedback and reward. This lead to further research with a Law and Criminology colleague investigating the impact in terms of specific and quantifiable learner development of using very specific feedback and guidance models.


Other activities

• Chartered IT Professional member of the British Computer Society (CITP) 

• Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA)  

• Founder member of IfL (MIfL), now member of SET (MSET)

• Founding member of the Chartered College of Teaching (CCT)

• Committee member of the association for information technology in teacher education (ITTE)

• Member of Teacher Educators in Life Long Learning (TELL)

• Member of the Association for Learning Technology (ALT)

• External Examiner for the University of South Wales' PCET provision

• External Examiner for the University of Cambridge's International Examinations’ Teaching with Digital Technologies Professional Qualification. 

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