Julia P.

Co-founder/Chief Learning Engineer at To Eleven

Education Management

Education: UCLA - UCLA Graduate School of Education
Los Angeles, CA, USA


I am the co-founder of To Eleven an innovative education consultancy firm working to create and improve learning experiences and to integrate new technologies and approaches into existing ones (both in-person and online). I partner with individuals and organizations to design and implement rich learning experiences grounded in science, human behavior, and evidence-based principles to move all learners forward. I have a Ph.D in Education from UCLA and prior to co-founding To Eleven, I spent over twenty years as a research and learning scientist at UCLA’s National Center for Research on Evaluation, Standards and Student Testing (CRESST). I am the author of many peer-reviewed journal articles, book chapters, and regularly presents at conferences and I love to speak, write, and conduct training workshops on how to implement learning science-based strategies and techniques connected to how people learn.

I am originally from England and now live in southern California with my evolutionary biologist husband and three sons.


So many things put a smile on my face! One of my passions is to "help people teach things better, and learn things better"! I also am inspired by educators. I’d say one of my life goals is that the world would see teaching and learning as skills that can be learned and honed and perfected and we shouldn’t assume anyone can just roll out of bed a good teacher!

I am willing to travel

More than 100 miles

When it comes to payments

I need my expenses covered - travel, hotel, meals, etc.


learning learning science teaching strategy learning and development education learning engineer learning strategies onboarding employee onboarding onboarding best practices training and development training design an engaging powerpoint presentation evaluation research design motivation cognitive overload metacognition building trust

Best Story

Many stories about the biggest mistake that people make when it comes to teaching and learning, and that is not taking into account the context. For example, what the epic failure and collapse of the Tacoma Narrows Bridge in Washington State can tell us about how best to design effective learning experiences and the mistakes to avoid. I have many stories and anecdotes and movie clips I bring into my presentations to help illustrate points and allow people to connect what they are learning to their real-lives.

Origin Story

The a-ha moment, and reason I started my company was when I realized that "learning is hard: hard is learning". And if we can get folks to embrace this and really lean into all of the evidence we have about how people learn most effectively, and not how they "wish" it happened, we would be able to create contexts in which people actually learned what we want them to learn. And are engaged and motivated to do so!

Example talks

Mastering Meeting Dynamics: Overcoming Common Distractions

Co-presented with Dr. Luis Velasquez at the Calendly, Inc., annual meeting. This talk focuses on:

Defining some dysfunctional behaviors that can derail meetings
Discussing ways you can prevent these behaviors occurring in the first place, and
Exploring some ways to handle meeting meeting-derailing behaviors IF they do happen

Participants leave equipped with tools and strategies to transform their meetings from dreaded, obligatory, inefficient gatherings, to dynamic, focused, outcome-oriented discussions.

Learning Is Hard! (but understanding how it works can help you teach and learn more efficiently)

The goal of any training is to build expertise, but the fact that learning to do something well requires real effort is often under-appreciated. To master any skill we need to pay attention to the right things, engage in focused practice, take in and act on critical feedback.

Practice opportunities are effective and meaningful when they focus on authentic, engaging, relevant questions or problems to solve. This helps people see the positive value in their learning and how it applies to them which increases motivation, and meaningful, transferable learning.

In this session you will learn about key learning science principles such as the nature of expertise, focused deliberate practice, and how to align and connect teaching and training techniques to how people learn.

Strategies to Increase Learner Engagement and Active Participation

In this session I will discuss and look to answer the question: how can we increase learner engagement and active participation in our training sessions? The key is to align and connect teaching and training techniques to how people learn.

I focus on how we can leverage learning science principles to create effective and efficient learning experiences that help learners engage in activities which foster, and encourage storage of new information.

Together we will explore ways we can help learners make meaning of new information and truly LEARN, through the activities we create and embed in our learning environments.