Are You an EdTech Expert?



9 Questions

What is edtech?

What is the primary focus of constructivism?

What is the difference between cognitivist and social cognitivist theories?

What is the difference between e-learning and m-learning?

What is computer-supported collaborative learning (CSCL)?

What is the flipped classroom?

What is augmented reality (AR)?

What is the purpose of learning management systems (LMS)?

What is the primary disadvantage of educational technology?


The use of educational technology, or edtech, combines computer hardware, software, and educational theory and practice to facilitate learning, and is based on theoretical knowledge from various disciplines such as communication, education, psychology, sociology, artificial intelligence, and computer science. It encompasses several domains including learning theory, computer-based training, online learning, and m-learning where mobile technologies are used. Educational technology refers to all valid and reliable applied education sciences, such as equipment, as well as processes and procedures that are derived from scientific research. Educational technology is not restricted to high technology but is anything that enhances classroom learning in the utilization of blended, face-to-face, or online learning. Educational technologists try to analyze, design, develop, implement, and evaluate processes and tools to enhance learning. Modern electronic educational technology is an important part of society today and encompasses e-learning, instructional technology, information and communication technology (ICT) in education, edtech, learning technology, multimedia learning, technology-enhanced learning (TEL), and computer-based instruction, among others. Online education originated from the University of Illinois in 1960, and as of 2009, approximately 5.5 million students were taking at least one class online. According to a 2008 study conducted by the US Department of Education, during the 2006–2007 academic year, about 66% of postsecondary public and private schools participating in student financial aid programs offered some distance learning courses. In 2020, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many schools across the world were forced to close, which left more and more grade-school students participating in online learning, and university-level students enrolling in online courses to enforce distance learning. Organizations such as Unesco have enlisted educational technology solutions to help schools facilitate distance education.Overview of Learning Theories and Technologies

  • Behaviorism is a theoretical framework developed in the early 20th century based on animal learning experiments, and is linked to training people.

  • Cognitivism theories look beyond behavior to explain brain-based learning by considering how human memory works to promote learning. There are two separate schools of cognitivism: cognitivist and social cognitivist.

  • Constructivism distinguishes between individual (or psychological) constructivism and social constructivism. It has a primary focus on how learners construct their own meaning from new information and requires students to use their prior knowledge and experiences to formulate new concepts.

  • E-learning refers to a continuum of the extent to which technology is used to assist or replace other learning and teaching approaches, ranging from none to fully online distance learning. It can be synchronous or asynchronous.

  • Computer-based training (CBT) is a self-paced learning activity delivered on a computer or handheld device, and typically presented content linearly. It poses some learning challenges such as lack of human interaction.

  • Computer-supported collaborative learning (CSCL) uses instructional methods designed to encourage or require students to work together on learning tasks, allowing social learning. It differs from instruction in which the instructor is the principal source of knowledge and skills.

  • Social technology, and social media specifically, provides avenues for student learning that would not be available otherwise. It vaporizes the geographical barriers that would otherwise separate people.

  • Flipped classroom is an instructional strategy in which computer-assisted teaching is integrated with classroom instruction. Instructional content is delivered outside of the classroom, often online.

  • Educational media and tools can be used for numerous types of physical technology: digital cameras, video cameras, interactive whiteboard tools, document cameras, electronic media, and LCD projectors. Combinations of these techniques include blogs, collaborative software, ePortfolios, and virtual classrooms.

  • Video technology includes VHS tapes, DVDs, on-demand and synchronous methods with digital video via server or web-based options, such as streamed video and webcams. Interactive digital video games are being used at K-12 and higher education institutions.

  • Screencasting allows users to share their screens directly from their browser and make the video available online so that other viewers can stream the video directly. The presenter thus has the ability to show their ideas and flow of thoughts rather than simply explain them as simple text content.

  • Collaborative learning is a group-based learning approach in which learners are mutually engaged in a coordinated fashion to achieve a learning goal or complete a learning task. With recent developments in smartphone technology, the processing powers and storage capabilities of modern mobiles allow for advanced development and the use of apps.Technology in Education

  • Computers and tablets provide access to websites and applications, and mobile devices support m-learning.

  • Mobile devices like clickers and smartphones can be used for interactive audience response feedback and performance support.

  • iPads can help disabled children in communication development and improving physiological activity.

  • Computers and smart devices increase engagement and interest when utilized educationally in classrooms.

  • Collaborative and social learning is possible through group web pages, blogs, wikis, and Twitter.

  • Whiteboards can be physical or virtual, and interactive whiteboards allow for writing and manipulating images.

  • A virtual learning environment (VLE) simulates a classroom or meetings by mixing communication technologies.

  • Augmented reality (AR) allows for the creation of layers of digital information for real-time interaction.

  • Learning management systems (LMS) are used for delivering, tracking, and managing training and education.

  • Computer-aided assessment ranges from automated multiple-choice tests to more sophisticated systems.

  • Training management systems optimize instructor-led training management and can complete an LMS.

  • Educational technology is used in preschool, primary, and secondary education in the form of computers, tablets, audio and video resources, educational apps, electronic books, and educational videos.

  • E-learning is utilized by public and private K-12 schools in the United States, with virtual schools enabling students to attend courses anywhere with an internet connection.Overview of Educational Technology

  • Educational technology encompasses the use of technology to enhance education and learning.

  • Online schools and e-learning are increasingly popular, providing students with a flexible, accessible, and safe learning environment.

  • Virtual schools and universities are becoming more common, offering a range of courses and disciplines at a lower cost.

  • Educational technology can improve access to education, provide individualized learning, and allow students to work at their own pace.

  • However, there are also challenges and disadvantages associated with educational technology, including overstimulation, lack of social interaction, and potential for distraction and cheating.

  • In the corporate world, e-learning is used for mandatory compliance training, continuing professional development, and IT skills training.

  • Public health providers use e-learning to provide the latest research in the field and promote mHealth programs.

  • Educational apps have been shown to reduce the achievement gap between struggling and average students.

  • MOOCs have not had a significant impact on higher education, but are expected to remain in some form.

  • Employers' acceptance of online education has risen, but some still view traditional degrees more positively.

  • Properly trained staff is needed to work with students online, and the costs of technology can be a challenge for some institutions.

  • Effective technology use deploys multiple evidence-based strategies concurrently, as do effective teachers.


Test your knowledge on the ever-evolving field of educational technology with our comprehensive quiz. From learning theories to digital tools, this quiz covers a broad range of topics related to using technology in education. Put your understanding of e-learning, computer-based training, collaborative learning, and more to the test. Whether you're a student, educator, or just interested in the field, this quiz is a great way to check your knowledge and learn something new.

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