DeSuggestopedia R.I.P Papers 

The Proof that DeSuggestopedia is a Pseudoscience

       Teaching is a legal process. Educational practice pertains to proven research. It is the recipe that informs of effective practises. What ever tutors claim they  always achieve more if they apply proven methods deSuggestopedia is not a proven method. 

          If someone challenged another with a professional paper, then it is standard professional practice for that person to answer that challenge with a professional paper. See () Recordings of his practicising of the method has been made.

Main Papers

1.  Ioan Talfryn - Ants in the  Head Research**

        The title of this paper is unprofessional. What Ants in the Head has to do with learning is a complete mystery. The paper is full of waffle and bizarre list of references.  What swinging bridges has to do with learning is a complete mystery. Talfryn justifies Stephen Krashen's discredited input theory. The paper is clearly intended to impress. 

    If Ioan Talfryn offered this paper to a Q.T.S. teacher trainer as an assignment, he would receive an  F- Grade. The tutor would not bother to read it.

    The paper is not sourced referenced. It has no legal validity. All he is offering is his unqualified personal opinions and prejudices. What "Turtles, Termites and Traffic Jams" or "swing bridges' have to language learning is complete mystery to me.  (See 13. ) He even offers readers a YouTube link so they can look at the swinging bridge.

Click for a professional appraisal of his Ants in the Head Research.

Correction Re Above Talfryn pheromones that refers to anima smells not phomemes elements of sound 

2.  Hagan - Suggetopedia Critique Paper**

        Unlike Talfryn's paper, this is a professionally written and published paper by Hagan 2002. He clearly had access to Lozanov theories, and he has presented a rationale with researched references that illustrates that the method is a pseudoscience. The impressive science has no substance.

      Hagan questions why the method is still being practiced after 40 years. It is now 50 years. This paper is consistent with Howard Gunn's 2022 paper.

3. Howard Gunn Critique

          This is a detailed research overview of deSuggestopedia derided from contemporary research including a cognitive perspective that proves the method has no validity and that it is a pseudoscience.  Cognitive and neuroscience research proves the Ioan Talfryn practice and methods have no validity.

4. Ducan Astle Cambridge university of the Brain

      Astle who is a neuroscientist refers to the neuromyths that exist in his Learnus Lecture. There are a cohort of brilliant researchers that liaise with each other across the world. They do not refer to 1960s research by a psychotherapists. Lazanov was an leading authority on neuromyths.

5. Ioan Talfryn - Response

         There has been no response to  Howard's professional criticism from Ioan Talfyn's. He has not  defended the criticism that his suggestopedia or de-suggestopedia method is a pseudo-science. 

         The only plausible reason for this is Ioan Talfryn knows he cannot defend it. This professional website presentation illustrates this. It is reasonable to suggest that if his claimed miracle methods worked then somone in the world would have found it. No other centre practices his methods in the Welsh for Adult Service.

6. The Registered Status of Q.T.S. Teachers

          This is the ruling Howard obtained out of historical accident as opposed to deliberate intent that defines the Q.T.S. teaching standard of practice in Wales and England. It recognises how high trained teachers are. It also illustrates that legally Mr Ioan Talfryn was not teaching and he does not know how to teach. 

       The ruling is law.

       The teachers council is now part of the Education Workforce Council in Wales.

7. The Professional Status of Registered Teachers.
      This research undertaken by the University of Reading conclude that registered teachers have equivalent professional status of doctors and nurses.

Minor Papers

8.  Professor John Sweller Paper 

        Professor John Sweller is an educational psychologist who created a branch of cognitive science. He was declared educationalist of the year by the Tes in 2018. The concept that adults cannot learn like three-year-olds, what is referred to as biologically primary learning, is accepted by academics. It is proven. This cannot be disputed.

     This means that Talfryn's concept that adults can absorb languages like three-year-olds if he gave them a children's pantomime was a fantasy. The only people who can learn like three-year-olds are three-year-olds.

       Lozanov claimed that adults should be reduced to a child-like state. Ioan Talfryn appears to interpreted that literally. It was probably an extreme rendition of the method. It illustrates his state of mind.

9. Pictures of Talfryn's Pantomimes 

       Talfryn gave his learners animal masks and Welsh animal names on his S4C deSuggestopedia series that illustrated his method, where he expected his adult celebrities to subconsciously absorb the language content of his pantomime. The 1,000 words. In his other S4C series, he performed acted plays.

10. Wikipedia Explanation of Suggestopedia

      It refers to critics claiming Suggestopedia is pseudoscience and that learners are only expected to listen to the language, mouth words (say it) and bark at print (read it) and act and listen to music. This approach is not teaching. Anyone using the method was not teaching anything. (Professional teachers will understand what that means).

11.  Why learners will always achieve more if they use proven methods.  (Honest Welsh Language Tutors
      They refer to Welsh for Adult tutors making learning fun and entertaining learners rather than tutoring them. Coleman Klapper (2006), in their researched book on university second language tutoring and learning referred to Suggestopedia being applied by students sitting in armchairs learning. They dismissed the validity of the practice.

        This illustrates that the method is known about, as Rodgers and Richards's 1986 book illustrates. No respected course providers practice it because the claimed miracle methods do not work. Swarbrick (1996) illustrates the method has never been taught in schools.

12.  Memorisation - Petty

         Petty illustrates that memory decays. Learning a word in an unfamiliar language is no different to attempting to memorise someone's foreign name. Most people on planet earth know we learn.
          Words are stored in memory through growing synaptic links in the brain. Words are not baked in the brain and come out three days or more later, as Talfryn claims.

13. Word Learning 

       This B.B.C. article refers to a linguist at the University of Ontario. Talfryn claims that novice learners can subconsciously absorb a thousand words in their first lesson. Reference to this paper illustrates the claim is sheer fantasy. Learners will be lucky, unless they live in favourable Welsh-speaking environments, to develop a fluent Welsh-speaking capability of 500 words in three years of daily practice.

 14.  Costa - There No Spaces between Spoken Words
    Costa, who is a bilingual psychologist, refers to there being no spaces between spoken words. To know this, one only needs to listen to someone speaking an unfamiliar language.

         It will be virtually impossible for novice learners to identify, let alone memorise, a single word as opposed to a 1,000. Strangely, Talfryn does not appear to know this 

      Readers are invited to work out how many words they can identify from the following Scottish Gaelic.
 Click for YouTube Video

15.  Professor Daniel Mujis and Professor David Reynolds

        These professors of education illustrates that there is a great deal of research on proven teaching and learning methods. Reynolds wrote over thirty books prior to his retirement. Psychotherapists are not educational experts. 

       Mujis and Reynolds call for the abandoment of D.I.Y. methods.  Mr Ioan Talfryn deSuggestopedia method was a D.I.Y. method because it was made. It was a D.I.Y. method for learners who were expected to do all the work.themselves through self-study.

16.  Proven  Methods

       It is common knowledge that proven methods are those that are practiced by  large populations of practitioners that pertains to  research accepted by large populations of learners, including  leading  authorities in their fields.  All schools in the United Kingdom and predominantly all quality second language course providers teach grammar. Therefore it is a proven method.

         The public often do not appear to appreciate that professional Q.T.S. teaching is practiced by millions of teachers every day across the developed world.  It is so highly researched that the basic proven principles of it cannot be questioned.

         Whatever has been claimed about Mr Ioan Talfryn practice what his learners have achieved cannot be the product of his practice, the evidence is that his adult learners were apply D.I.Y. learning. He was expecting them to do all the work. If Mr Ioan Talfryn can prove the validity of his miracle claims and methods all schools would use it.

       No one was given unproven Covid vaccines. Learners should not be condemned to suffer unproven learning methods. 

17. Why Estyn Wfa Inspection's are Unreliable 

        Rodgers (2002) who is an authority on adult learning claims of the learning potential of adults is dictated by their occupations and not their professional qualifications. The problem with adult learning is that adult will also have other commitments. I spent six years after a day’s teaching obtaining my educational degrees.

         Working memory dictates that there is a seven years spread of learners learning potential. Most learners are around average. This has a profound influence on basic skill learning, which languages are.

          In optional subjects tutors can bury their under performing learners through streaming through methodology. Dr Margaret Newcombe Cardiff School of Welsh claimed the Wlpan method did not suit all learners needs. 

            Many learners learning Welsh in Wales will have learnt Welsh in school. It will not be a totally new experience for them. Enthusiastic learners can self study and do all the work. Assessing learners progress in a language is subjective, especially as oral language is transitory.

         This is why the evaluation of methodology is important

18. Derek Brockway Caiad@iaeth 2015

       This is an honest description of Ioan Talfryn's desuggestopedia method that was practised on SC4 where he was featured speaking his G.C.S.E. Welsh to a toy squirrel. There is a reference to subconscious learning in the article and also to learners absorbing a thousand words in their first lessons. It is unclear why Derek Brockway was on the program if it was a lessons for beginners. It was never declared that he had learnt O'Level Welsh in school on the program.  The series appears to have been staged managed. 

19.  S4C Introduction to Method
This is an automated dictated version.
Not everything that was said is included  or clear.

        There is the issue of why Mr Ioan Talfryn needed to explain his theories to non-teaching authorities. He did admit his methods appeared counterintuitive. He probably did it to deceive his learners, viewers into believing the integrity of his pseudoscience method. Derek Brockway had a G.C.E. In Welsh.

        Issues like Talfryn's complexity theory had no relevance to the learners' learning. He refers to the story as the theme of the featured twelve SC4 lessons (It was on woodland animals).  He refers to his approach as being mostly unconscious learning. The word osmosis is used.  

       There was also reference to avalanches.

         This abjectly ridiculous statement is made:-

         "It's difficult with this week because obviously we're only here a weekend it be quite nice to have a week of just being silent before it starts to come out of  memory"

 Some of this was said by Nia Parry. The  delayed outcome is related to his Breton Story in his Ants in the Head series.

20. Cariad@iaeth  2015 Celebrities Pinc Elephant Revolt 

    When the celebrities were required to learn the Welsh for 'pinc elephant' in a Welsh nursery rhyme they revolted. One stated he would only stay if the word grey was used instead!
      It is unclear why novice learners need to learn nursery rhymes and how to talk about woodland animals. It is unlikely Mr Ioan Talfryn can even basically speak five languages as he implies when he does not have a clue how to learn them.

21. Cariad@iaeth 2015 Lesson 10

      The celebrities claimed they had not learnt anything in Lesson 12 of the S4C series. The only language production his celebrities engaged in was when he required them to talk Welsh to toy animals.

22.  The Ants in the Head Research is Not Sourced Referenced

      Proven research must refer to proven sourced research (References) that will be presented in the papers bibliography.

      Howard Gunn cites Professor John Sweller's (2018)  research,  for instance, he quotes the original research in his paper. Those who proved adults cannot learn like young children.  Research can have numbers against the key points as in Hagan Paper.
     There references to sources in the text that is not in Ioan Talfryn's bibliography and vice versa. One reference is:-

RESNICK. M. (1994). Turtles, Termites and Traffic Jams. Explorations in Massively Parallell Microworlds. Cambridge Mass. MIT Pres

    What t
urtle, termites and traffic jams have to do with learning is complete mystery. Sixteen of his reference have no relevance to pedagogy. The inclusion of these phantom references can only be intended to impress, blind those who read it with science.
There are range of issues like his flip theory:-

Each student reaches his or her own personal Tipping Point (or Flipping Point) in his or her own time, of course, but when it does happen, as predicted by Complexity Theory or Dynamic Systems Theory, production skills suddenly erupt (as they did with me outside the night club in Cardiff).

is not sourced referenced. They are made up. There is no reference to 'flipping points' in the educational or event cognitive literature. i.e. Eysneck and Kane (2010) Cognitive psychology.

This means Ioan Talfyn's paper is not sourced referenced. It is not worth the paper it is written upon.

23. Coleman and Klapper (2006) Critique

      Coleman and Klapper (2006) are edited by two distinguished university academic second language professors, who are not psychotherapists. They state in their research book that has twenty-two contributors that university academic language tutors can learn from school teachers.
        Richard and Rodgers 2016  devoted eleven pages to Suggestopedia. They only said elements of it might have value, but they included scathing criticism. Coleman and Klapper (2006) only referred to it in a 'sentence'.  Mitchell et al. (2019)  Professors of linguistics and language do not devote a word to it. 
       What 'Professor' Ioan Talfryn does not appear to understand is that Suggestopedia or deSuggestopedia is not an undiscovered miracle method of language. It is known about. There is no evidence it was ever practised in schools. There was not extensive 'brain research' at that time to disprove Lozonov methods referred to in Richards. Hagan did. He saw through the 'fake science' as any cognitive science would.

Hurd and Murphy (2005) - Success with Languages - Open University.


    They stated:-   

"Often as learners we set off with unrealistic assumptions, some of which may be fostered by the advertising employed by some course providers of language learners, along the lines of 'Learn language in three weeks!  pg.7"

25. Professor Sarah Eaton - 2

           Professor Sarah Eaton,  who is a professor in Calgary School of Education, who learn Spanish as adult and wrote her researched paper when she was in laguage research insitute, where stated that:-

"The challenges of learning another language are immense. Yet millions have achieved some degree of fluency in at least one other language. Those who achieve true fluency do so because they put in dedicated, consistent effort over a long period of time. Claiming otherwise is tantamount to fraud."

       If anyone make claims that they cannot deliver to those who pay for service they will be commiting fraud.

26. Learnus Mission Statement
       The Welsh Government had been independently advised to recruit teachers with teaching masterates. There are no experts in teaching because authorities in their field simply have access to the corporate intelligence that exists in schools of education, who refer to authorities in cognitive and neuroscience. There are increasing neuroscientist-educationalists.
     The leaders in their field are those who write books. This because they make available what they know in the public domain. Ioan Talfryn clearly does not know what is in the literature.

27.  Lozanov -Suggestopedia Inventor Interview  From the Horses 'Lozanov' s Mouth

  It has been possible to work out that this is 1970s interview because of the reference to Salt Talks.

     Lozanov refers to himself as being a physician in this interview, which is primarily vague waffle. He refers to music. He claims that someone can create a conversational level of German, around 2,000 words, including grammar, and all the grammar through practising three hours a day for a month
 without doing homework. This is absolute fantasy.

       The horse Lozanov refers to music as if it were some drug that can be administered to enable learners to ridiculously improve the quantity of learning. Strangely, he believes that only specific musical genres create this. If this was true, then schools could massively improve children's attainment. He does state that his method can be applied to all subject learning.
      Children often listen to music when they revise. Ioan Talfryn, in his"Welsh Not" article, claims he wants deSuggestopdia method to be applied in Welsh Schools.

This is stated in Ioan Talfryn's Ants in the Head research (2):-


"Yet in that time,  out of conscious sight  all those disorganised, scurrying little linguistic ants in my head had surreptitiously and suddenly ordered themselves into an efficient, working collective. Without my knowing it, a Breton ant colony had taken residence in my head!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"


He claims that 'neurons' are like 'ants'. The neurons are fixed cells in the brain and nervous system. They do not travel around the brain.

He claims that 'pheromoms' are like 'neurotransmitters.' pheromones' are smells that come from animals. Neurotransmitter are the chemicals that are created to create the action potential to enable learning to take place.

Memory is  created  by growing synapses between neurons. The process has to relevance to ants.

29. Quotes from Richard and Rodgers 1986 


 "Memorization in learning. The suggestopedia method claims accelerated learning 25 times that of conventional methods. Precise descriptions about the conditions under which suggestepdia experiments were run are hard to come by, as well as all the descriptions of successful classroom procedures." pg 142

       "The most conspicuous characteristics of suggestopedia are the decoration, furniture and arrangement of the classroom, the use of music, and the authoritative behaviour of the teacher. There is some mystical air about it, partially because it has few direct links with established learning or educational theory in the West, and partly because of its arcane terminology and neologisms amount to what one critic unkindly called it a package of pseudo-science gobblygook". Pg 142.

       "Scovel stated that there is nothing of use apart from the misuse of citations, terminological jargon, experimental data and states that a careful reading of Suggestology and Outlines of Suggestopedy reveals that there is precious little in suggestopedia which is scientific." Pg 152

 Ioan Talfryn Qualifications.
The definition of expertise is that is person who can offer professional opinions  in minutes that it would take novice thousands of hours of training and practice, which is assuming they have the understanding and skill to attain it.

        Ioan Talfryn has a 1980s past It Sell-by-date P.G.C.E. Welsh Language Teaching Certificate and he taught four years in school classroom.  He has been practicsing a 1960s methods by a Bulgarian psychotherapist.

       Professional teachers do not refer to 1960s eccentric  psychotherapists.  Teaching is a becoming a deep science.  Professional teachers are trained in school of education where the corporate teaching intelligence exists. Mr Ioan Talfryn is to lamentably ignorant to understand that there is only one proven method of teaching and it is called professional teaching. Professional teachers know how  to teach and how learners learn. Millions of teachers practice it across the world everyday.  He has even claimed he wants his method practiced in Welsh schools. 

        There is no evidence that Ioan Talfryn has read a  book on pedagogy for at least thrity years.

Epilogue about Suggestopedia.

Quotes from Nia Parry on S4C 2015 Cariad Iaeth

     "Lozanov is ‘very, very eccentric’ but he his a ‘genius’ and ‘I can promise you his 1960s methods are scientifically proven."

Qoutes from Hagan Paper 2002

          "How can this be, when we have at our disposal this special method that makes one conversant in a foreign language in only a month? A closer look at the claims made by the Internet Language Corporation--the firm that markets these cassette tapes--leaves little room for optimism. The method they describe, known either as "suggestopedia," or "accelerated learning" (AL), is based on teaching techniques developed in the mid 1960s by a Bulgarian psychotherapist named Georgi Lozano. Considering its bizarre origins, it is remarkable that this method is still around nearly 40 years later."

     "This is one of many extraordinary claims you will find in Suggestology. Lozanov's book is an amalgam of psychoanalysis, parapsychology, and mysticism; in short, a cornucopia of esoterica. The man who created a worldwide mind revolution, and who once claimed to have telepathic powers, holds forth on ESP, automatic writing, alpha wave biofeedback, and hypnosis among the Druids. (6) One of his most novel ideas is "hypnopedy," or sleep learning. Lozanov describes an experiment in which Bulgarian schoolchildren learned Russian vocabulary as it played over the loudspeakers in their dormitories while they slept."

       "Here's how the method works according to the SkyMall program: "You will learn the language stresslessly [sic], as a child does, by hearing new vocabulary and phrases in alternately loud, whispered, and emphatic intonations, all accompanied by slow rhythmic music in digital stereo."

        "In other words, since language processing is a left-hemisphere activity (for the vast majority of people, anyway), the right hemisphere is not doing its fair share. However, if If we do something to activate the other hemisphere--play some slow rhythmic music, for example--then it will wake up and start pulling its own weight. Baroque is the music de preference because, according to Ostrander and Schroeder, "there are mind/body secrets in Baroque." (12) There are ancillary benefits as well. For example, Superlearning Music tapes help plants grow lush, say Ostrander and Schroeder."


    "All of this begs the more fundamental question about which parts of the brain are even capable in principle of contributing, positively or negatively, to language acquisition. The standard view in the cognitive sciences is that the brain is a highly modular organ, and that its many modules are specialized for particular tasks. Thus while Broca's and Wernicke's regions of the left hemisphere are responsible for language processing, the primary visual cortex of the occipital lobe processes visual information, and the frontal lobe controls our emotional and judgmental responses. In some cases this specialization can be narrowly circumscribed to a striking degree. For example, an area in the posterior right hemisphere is responsible for facial recognition, so that injury to that area can cause prosopagnosia or "face blindness" without affecting one's ability to recognize other objects."

           It is pointless referring to this paper any further because the author clearly has an understanding of cognition. In the last twenty years brain imaging has improved immensely. We all use all our brains all our time. Ioan Talfryn's Ants in the Head research is sheer fantasy         

See Ducan Astle Cambridge University of the brain for neuromyths.i

Summing Up

          Pyscholingualist support those with emotional problems like easting disorders. He developed his method with an opera singer. If Ioan Taflryn really has dated P.C.S.E. it little wonder he gave up practising in the classroom.  


          There cannot be any valid reason for novice learners to be introduced to speak about 'Woodland animals'. The celebrities who undertook his S4C Cariad@iaeth 2015 clearly could not understand his rationale nor why they should learn children's nursery rhyme and the word 'pinc elphant'. I understand one of them was a former professional teacher. It is unlikely he was a language teacher or be would have seen through his methods immediately and he would have done something about.

Colin Miles