RESOURCE: The Innovation Index

Written by: HTU | Published:

A new Innovation Index is promising to help schools evaluate the impact that their technology has on teaching and learning.

A new Innovation Index is promising to help schools evaluate the impact that their technology has on teaching and learning. It has been developed by Professor Michael Fullan and Pearson’s Katelyn Donnelly and is outlined in their new report Alive in the Swamp, published by innovation charity Nesta.

The Index has been designed as a practical evaluation tool for those charged with making decisions in primary and secondary schools about what technologies to invest in and when. It helps users evaluate each technological innovation in three areas – pedagogy, system change potential and use of technology.

It comes after a report from Nesta last year, Decoding Learning, found that technology is often used simply to support existing teaching practices, rather than to transform teaching and learning. The Index asks users to rate digital products or services in each of the three areas above using a four-point scale.

  • Green: Good – likely to succeed/produce transformative outcomes.
  • Amber/Green: Mixed – some aspects are solid; a few aspects are lacking full potential.
  • Amber/Red: Problematic – requires substantial attention; some portions are gaps and need improvement.
  • Red: Off track – unlikely to succeed.

Tom Kenyon, director of digital education at Nesta, said: “In too many instances, innovations and their investments have failed to demonstrate an attainment return. Software and kit, bought without consideration of how technology will change practice, will never meet schools’ great expectations of enhanced learning. We hope that the Innovation Index in Alive in the Swamp will help reverse this trend.”


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