what I do


seminars, training events and activities

I facilitate sessions and events that explore different aspects of informal education, social pedagogy and work with children, young people, families and communities. I also undertake individual and group supervison.

research and writing

Among my books are Creators not Consumers (1980, 1982), Organise! (1981), Developing Youth Work (1988), Local Education (1994), Informal Education (1996, 1999, 2005, 2020 with Tony Jeffs), The Art of Helping Others (2008, with Heather Smith), Youth Work Practice (2010, edited with Tony Jeffs), Journeying Together (2011, edited with Alan Rogers) and Youth Work and Faith (2015, edited with Naomi Stanton and Tom Wylie).


I founded and  continue to edit infed.org – a website specializing in the theory and practice of informal education, social pedagogy, lifelong learning, social action, and community learning and development. It is used by over million people each year across the world but especially in north America, India, Australia, and Britain.

learning materials and programme development

Over the last three years, I have undertaken a major rework of two second year 20 credit modules for the YMCA George Williams College/Coventry University Children, young people and families BA Hons programme. I have also developed two new modules – working with systems and networks, and critical theory.

hcs2 guidehcs2 reader tgw2 guide  tgw2 readerwsn2 guidect3 critical theory study guidect3 critical theory reader

These materials are available in different formats – print, screen, phone and an A4 Open Dyslexic version. We can also make them available as kindle files.

Another element of my current work is working as part of a team building a new level 3 Children, young people and families programme that also leads into to a recognized Access to Higher Education qualification.

virtual learning environments

I have done a lot of work on Moodle environments. Much of my experience has been with the development of ymoodle for the YMCA George Williams College.

ymoodle provides the platform for programmes running from levels 2-7. Students can access learning resources, submit work, get feedback and join forums. Managers and supervisors can also access support via the system.

One of the key aspects of ymoodle is a concern to make using it more of a web experience than is usual with virtual learning environments.



Mark K Smith