The Social Aspects of Technology-Enhanced Learning Situations

Article excerpt

ABSTRACT. The purpose of this article is to gain a deeper understanding of difficulties experienced in using ICT for learning, the importance of self-efficacy in relation to positive learning outcomes, the future development of games that leverage emerging social media platforms and mobile technologies, and the trend toward more blended and online delivery in higher education. The theory that I shall seek to elaborate here puts considerable emphasis on the development of educational programs based on ICT, the impact of the community peer-reviewing process on the quality of produced annotations and student learning, dynamic and reciprocal communication and interaction resulting in positive learning outcomes, and difficulties associated with introducing technology into the classroom.

Keywords: technology, ICT, learning, education, online, virtual

1. Introduction

The mainstay of the paper is formed by an analysis of the evaluation of ICT's impact on education, the predominance of information processing models of learning, the social motivation and institutions that sustain learning interactions, and the development of technology-enhanced learning. The analysis presented in this paper contributes to research on the design of educational programs supported by ICT, the potential of engaging students in authoring example annotations, the effects of teaching on the tutor's own learning, and cross-cultural online collaborative learning contexts. These findings highlight the importance of examining the support of collaborative learning environments that foster communities of inquiry and discourse, the extent to which specific learning objectives are achieved through mobile social media games, collaborative online learning situations, and the features and design choices available in virtual environments.

2. The Value of ICT in the Educational System

Breadth of use, experience, self-efficacy and education are as important as age in explaining how people become digital natives. There are significant differences within cohorts of young people in terms of their preferences, skills and use of new technologies. The presence of children in the household does not influence parents' use of the Internet for their own learning activities. There are potential learning benefits (Bacalu, 2012) in many online activities from playing collaborative games to chatting in a forum. Immersion in technology (Hunter, 2012) is an important factor in understanding whether people are confident in their ICT skills. The integration of ICTs in many aspects of a person's life may lead to the uptake of digital learning opportunities (Internet users may ignore these learning activities if they otherwise use technologies in a broad fashion). (Helsper and Eynon, 2010) The Evolutionary Development Model (EDM) aims at the building and rigorous, iterative testing of each of the components of the ICT for education (ICT4E) programs in real educational settings, establishing a roadmap to create and validate ICTbased, pedagogic innovations for the classroom. (Rodriguez, Nussbaum, and Dombrovskaia, 2012)

Teachers should select the most appropriate ICT resources to enable their students to meet the required learning goals. Knowledge of technology (Läzäroiu, 2013) will not be enough if teachers do not feel confident using that knowledge to facilitate student learning. Beliefs can influence knowledge acquisition (Rädulescu, 2013) and use of technology. Teacher beliefs are heavily influenced by the subject (Doomen, 2012) and school culture in which they participate. Today's students have little to no knowledge about how to use ICT tools in an instructional manner (David, 2012), needing to know how to use them to facilitate student-centered instruction. Inservice teachers have a multitude of variables to consider when incorporating technology into their practices. Teachers can develop confidence by hearing about or observing other teachers' successful efforts using technology. …