Prof Dr Felicitas Macgilchrist

Felicitas Macgilchrist is Head of the Media | Transformation department and Professor of Media Research at the Georg-August-University of Goettingen’s Institute of Education. Her current research focuses on the discourses and practices around educational technology, including critical and speculative approaches to digital education. Her projects ask which policies and practices are shaping media change in today's schools.

She studied psychology, education and applied linguistics, gained her PhD in cultural sciences from the European University Viadrina in Frankfurt/Oder and her habilitation in educational studies from the Technical University in Braunschweig. She has been a visiting scholar in New York, Ghent and Birmingham and has taught on media, discourse studies, cultural studies and English in Russia, Germany, Vietnam, Belgium, the UK and the USA. In 2009, she joined the Georg Eckert Institute, and has been Department Head since 2015.

Felicitas is deputy speaker of the Leibniz ScienceCampus - Postdigital Participation - Braunschweig. She is co-editor of the journal Learning, Media and Technology, on the editorial board of Critical Discourse Studies and Historical Encounters, and on the board of the DiscourseNet Research Association. She tweets @discoursology.

Research interests:

  • Digital education: What kinds of futures are, for instance, imagined by today's edtech, educational policy or school practices?
  • Education, technology and inequality: How is technology entangled with inequality in education? How are educational stakeholders engaging with technology and inequality?
  • Post-qualitative inquiry: How do, for instance, discourse studies, ethnography, software studies, critical data studies, social science fiction and design research help us to explore educational technology? How can a critical utopian approach contribute to theorising education?


  • Education, Technology and Inequality After/During Corona (ETIC) adopts a critical utopian approach to explore the ways key actors have dealt with the inequalities emerging during the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic in 2020/21, and elicits their narratives of how the future could be shaped differently.
  • In Reconfigurations of educational in/equality in a digital world (RED) we explore how digital educational media and data in the context of education affect international social in/equality and justice.
  • In EdTech 4.0? we explore how ongoing transformations, such as technological developments, changing educational policies and new curricular formats, impact the development of educational media and how these transformations become visible in the actual content of the media.
  • The Leibniz ScienceCampus - Postdigital Participation - Braunschweig takes a Social Living Labs approach to participation in our postdigital world. Our focus in MeTra is on education.
  • In LernDiWa, a collaborative project with the Georg August University in Göttingen, we explore how school learning culture is changing in today's networked (postdigital) world. We delve into one school in depth, joining them for two years. The interdisciplinary project connects educational research, media studies, cultural studies and ethnography.
  • We are currently building The Basement: The Digital Lab at the Georg Eckert Institut, an open space for everyone who wants to try out digital education for themselves, and to collaboratively research or co-design edtech. We aim to raise questions, to speculate and to unlearn ways of doing things. The Basement will be a space to explore situated knowledges and creative, critical, intersectional and decolonial methodologies. It will be a space for participation, indeterminacy and trial-and-error experimentation.
  • In the joint "DATAFIED: DATA For and In EDucation - The Construction of School in a Datafied Society" research project, the GEI's project investigates the design and development of data-driven learning software, asking which imaginings of good school and good teaching are encoded into these media. 
  • In the network Reimagining Literacy Education: Being literate in the 21st century, we team up with partners in Canada, Australia, the UK and the USA who investigate digital literacy practices, with a special look at makerspaces in these countries. 

Selected recent presentations and publications

  • Macgilchrist, F., Allert, H., & Bruch, A. (2020). Students and society in the 2020s: Three future 'histories' of education and technology. Learning, Media and Technology, 45(1), 76-89. (open access)
  • Selwyn, N., Hillman, T., Eynon, R., Ferreira, G., Knox, J., Macgilchrist, F. & Sancho-Gilet, J.M. (2020). What’s next for Ed-Tech? Critical hopes and concerns for the 2020s. Learning, Media and Technology, 45(1), 1-6. (open access)
  • Macgilchrist, F. (2020) When discourse analysts tell stories: what do we ‘do’ when we use narrative as a resource to critically analyse discourse? Critical Discourse Studies, online first, 1-17. (open access)
  • Macgilchrist, F. (2019). Digitale Bildungsmedien im Diskurs: Wertesysteme, Wirkkraft und alternative Konzepte. Aus Politik und Zeitgeschichte, 69, 18-23 from (open access)
  • Macgilchrist, F. (2018) Digitality and Education for Sustainable Development. Annual Conference on Sustainability, Göttingen, Germany. (Video here)



Edited volumes

  • Declercq, J., Jacobs, G., Macgilchrist, F. & Vandendaele, A. (2021). Participation, Engagement and Collaboration in Newsmaking: A Postfoundational Perspective. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
  • Macgilchrist, F. & Metro, R. (2020). Trickbox of Memory. Essays on Power and Disorderly Pasts. Earth, Milky Way: Punctum Books. (open access)
  • Tribukait, M. & Macgilchrist, F. (2020). The politics of "doing" history education. Special issue of Historical Encounters, 7(2). (open access)
  • Macgilchrist, F., Christophe, B., & Binnenkade, A. (2015). Memory Practices and History Education. Special issue of the Journal of Educational Media, Memory, and Society (JEMMS), 7(2).
  • Angermuller, J., Herschinger, E., Macgilchrist, F., Nonhoff, M., Reisigl, M., Wedl, J., Wrana, D., & Ziem, A. (2014) Diskursforschung: Ein interdisziplinäres Handbuch [Discourse Research: An Interdisciplinary Handbook] (Bielefeld: transcript). Vol. 1: Theorien, Methodologien und Kontroversen, edited by Angermuller, Nonhoff et al.; Vol. 2: Methoden und Analysepraxis. Perspektiven auf Hochschulreformdiskurse, edited by Nonhoff, Herschinger et al.


Other contributions (on digital education)

  • Dander, V. & Macgilchrist, F. (2021/in press). School of Data and shifting forms of political subjectivity. In P. Bettinger (Hrsg.), Educational Perspectives on Mediality and Subjectivation. London: Palgrave.
  • Lux, A. & Macgilchrist, F. (2021/in press). Postdigital. Interactive. Participatory. The PIP pathway to the Post-Corona-World. HMD Journal.
  • Macgilchrist, F. (2018). The “digital subject” of 21st century education: On datafication, educational technology and subject formation. In Peter Pericles Trifonas & Susan Jagger (Eds.), Routledge Handbook of Cultural Studies in Education. New York: Routledge.
  • Macgilchrist, F. (2018). Die medialen Subjekte des 21. Jahrhunderts: Digitale Kompetenzen und/oder Critical Digital Citizenship. In Heidrun Allert, Christoph Richter & Michael Asmussen (Eds), Digitalität und Selbst: Interdisziplinäre Perspektiven auf Subjektivierungs- und Bildungsprozesse. Bielefeld: transcript, 145-168.
  • Macgilchrist, F. (2018). Stirbt das Buch aus und kommt das Tablet? Über die Zukunft des Schulbuches in digitalen Zeiten. Vier Viertel Kult, Frühling/Sommer, 8-9.
  • Macgilchrist, F. (2017). Digitale Schulbücher: Chancen und Herausforderungen für den politischen Fachunterricht. In Harald Gapski, Monika Oberle & Walter Staufer (Eds), Medienkompetenz als Herausforderung für Politik, politische Bildung und Medienbildung. Bonn: Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung, 226-234. (open access)
  • Macgilchrist, F. (2018). Zur Medialität des Schulbuchs. In Matthias Proske & Kerstin Rabenstein (Eds), Kompendium Qualitative Unterrichtsforschung. Unterricht beobachten – beschreiben – rekonstruieren. Bad Heilbrunn Klinkhardt-Verlag, 281-298.

Other contributions (on memory practices)

  • Macgilchrist, F. (2021). Elastic textbooks: Pulling the national past forward. Public History Weekly, 9(2). Available at
  • Tribukait, M. & Macgilchrist, F. (2020). Introduction - The politics of doing history education: Memory practices in contemporary classrooms. Historical Encounters, 7(2), 1-9. Available at
  • Macgilchrist, F. (2017) Psychologie. In: Roth, Kersten/Wengeler, Martin/Ziem, Alexander (Eds): Handbuch Sprache in Politik und Gesellschaft. Berlin: de Gruyter, 568-587.
  • Macgilchrist, F. (2017) History education and memory practices: On curricula, classrooms and media. In: Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen (Eds): European Commemoration: Conference Proceedings. Berlin. (available online)
  • Macgilchrist, F. (2015) Geschichte und Dissens: Diskursives Ringen um Demokratie in der Schulbuchproduktion. In Susann Fegter, Fabian Kessl, Antje Langer, Marion Ott, Daniela Rothe & Daniel Wrana (Eds), Erziehungswissenschaftliche Diskursforschung: Empirische Analysen zu Bildungs- und Erziehungsverhältnissen. Wiesbaden: VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften, 193-209.
  • Macgilchrist, F. (2015) Memory Practices: On What Counts as Worth Remembering in History Education. In: THEN|HiER Bulletin.
  • Macgilchrist, F. (2014) Media discourse and de/coloniality: A post-foundational approach. In C. Hart, P. Cap  (Hrsg.), Contemporary Studies in Critical Discourse Analysis, London: Continuum, p. 387-407.
  • Macgilchrist, F. & Müller, L. (2012) Kolonialismus und Modernisierung: Das diskursive Ringen um Afrika bei der Schulbuchentwicklung. In Manuel Aßner, Jessica Breidbach, Abdel-Amine Mohammed, David Schommer & Katja Voss (Hrsg.), AfrikaBilder im Wandel? Frankfurt a.M.: Peter Lang, 195-208. (pdf)
  • Macgilchrist, F. (2011) Schulbücher und Postkolonialisms: Die Praxis der Schulbuchentwicklung. In Karl. W. Hoffmann & Philippe Kersting (Hrsg.), "Afrikaspiegelbilder" - Was erzählen uns europäische Afrikabilder über Europa? Mainz: Mainzer Kontaktstudium Geographie.

Other book chapters (on discourse and media)

  • Macgilchrist, F. (2020). Praktiken. In I. Truschkat & I. Bormann (Hrsg.), Einführung in die erziehungswissenschaftliche Diskursforschung. Forschungshaltung, zentrale Konzepte, Beispiele für die Durchführung. Weinheim: Juventa Verlag, p.29-38.
  • Macgilchrist, F., & Van Hout, T. (2019). Análisis etnográfico del discurso. In B. Herzog & J. Ruiz (Eds.), Análisis sociológico del discurso: Enfoques, métodos, procedimientos. Valencia: Publicacions de la Universitat de València.
  • Macgilchrist, F. (2018) Textbooks. In John Flowerdew & John Richardson. Routledge Handbook of Critical Discourse Studies. London: Routledge.
  • Angermuller, J. & Macgilchrist, F. (2014) Einleitung: Konzepte und Kontroversen der Diskurstheorie. In: J. Angermuller, E. Herschinger, F. Macgilchrist, M. Nonhoff, M. Reisigl, J. Wedl, D. Wrana & A. Ziem (Hrsg.): Diskursforschung: Ein interdisziplinäres Handbuch, Band 1: Theorien, Methodologien und Kontroversen. Bielefeld: transcript, p. 343-346.
  • Macgilchrist, F. (2014) Several entries, including ethnographische Diskursanalyse, positive Diskursanalyse, thematische Diskuranalyse, Systemisch-Funktionale Linguistik, Lexikogrammatik. In: Daniel Wrana, Alexander Ziem, Martin Reisigl, Martin Nonhoff, Johannes Angermüller (Eds), DiskursNetz: Wörterbuch der interdisziplinären Diskursforschung. Berlin: Suhkamp.
  • Macgilchrist, F. & Otto, M. (2014) Schulbücher für den Geschichtsunterricht, Version 1.0. In Docupedia-Zeitgeschichtea, 18. 2.2014, URL:
  • Macgilchrist, F. & Porsché, Y. (2014) Diskursforschung in der Psychologie. In: J. Angermuller, E. Herschinger, F. Macgilchrist, M. Nonhoff, M. Reisigl, J. Wedl, D. Wrana & A. Ziem (Hrsg.): Diskursforschung: Ein interdisziplinäres Handbuch, Band 1: Theorien, Methodologien und Kontroversen. Bielefeld: transcript, 239-260.
  • van Dyk, S., Langer, A., Macgilchrist, F., Wrana, D. & Ziem, A. (2014) Discourse and beyond? Zum Verhältnis von Sprache, Materialität und Praxis. In: J. Angermuller, E. Herschinger, F. Macgilchrist, M. Nonhoff, M. Reisigl, J. Wedl, D. Wrana & A. Ziem (Hrsg.): Diskursforschung: Ein interdisziplinäres Handbuch, Band 1: Theorien, Methodologien und Kontroversen. Bielefeld: transcript, p. 347-363.
  • Macgilchrist, F., Ott, M. & Langer, A. (2014) Der praktische Vollzug von „Bologna“: Eine ethnographische Diskursanalyse. In: M. Nonhoff, E. Herschinger, J. Angermüller, F. Macgilchrist, M. Reisigl, J. Wedl, D. Wrana & A. Ziem (Hrsg.): Diskursforschung: Ein interdisziplinäres Handbuch. Band II. Bielefeld: transcript, p. 37-57.
  • Macgilchrist, F. (2013) Is ‘empowerment’ still a useful concept? Rethinking media practice with Rancière and the ‘emancipated spectator’. In R. Gerodimos, D. Jackson, D. Lilleker & R. Scullion (Eds.), The Media, Political Participation and Empowerment. London: Routledge, 91-102.
  • Macgilchrist, F. & Christophe, B. (2011) Shaping the global: Theory and methods for exploring the production of globalization with educational media. In Susanne Knudsen, Jesus Rodriguez & Mike Horsley (Hrsg.), Local, National, and Transnational Identities in Textbooks and Educational Media, 101-111. (With Barbara Christophe).
  • Macgilchrist, F. (2010) Publish or Perish? A genre approach to getting published in leading English-language journals. In Katrin Girgensohn (Hrsg.) Kompetent zum Doktortitel: Konzepte zur Förderung Promovierender. (Wiesbaden: VS Verlag), 155-168.
  • Macgilchrist, F. (2009) The view from elsewhere: Western mediation of potential sources of Russian dislocation. In Philipp Casula & Jeronim Perovic (Hrsg.), Identities and Politics During Putin's Presidency. (Stuttgart: ibidem), 334-354.
  • Macgilchrist, F. (2007) Metaphorical Politics – Is Russia ‘western’ or not in the UK, US and German press coverage of the Russian-Chechen conflict? In C. Baker, C. Gerry, B. Madaj, E. Mellish & J. Nahodilova (Hrsg.), Nation in Formation: Inclusion and Exclusion in Central and Eastern Europe(London: SSEES Occasional Papers), 73-90.