E-Learning (M-Learning)

Authored by: Susannah Quinsee

The Routledge International Handbook of Learning

Print publication date:  December  2011
Online publication date:  May  2012

Print ISBN: 9780415571302
eBook ISBN: 9780203357385
Adobe ISBN: 9781136598562


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Writing a chapter on ‘e-learning’ is a potentially challenging task for two reasons: first, the pace of technological change and second, the scope of ‘e-learning’. Technology is changing so fast that, by the time books are published, much of the source material and technologies described are dated and have been replaced. The scope and range of learning activities, theories and technologies that come under this broad heading of ‘e-learning’ are overwhelming. E-learning in its broadest form can encompass anything from the use of laptops in classrooms, to the creation of videos posted on YouTube, to debates on the social impact of Facebook and other social networks on cognitive development, to privacy issues and concerns over the publication of open access resources, and, most fundamentally, to questions about what the purpose of formal learning institutions is in an age where access to knowledge and information is seen as ubiquitous. In this brief chapter, obviously it is not possible to explore all these issues in significant depth; however, what this chapter does is provide a commentary on some of the major areas, underpinning theories, and makes particular reference to e-learning as a pedagogical method for enabling active engagement and co-creation of learning between learners and teachers. It aims to give an introduction to some of the key issues and pointers to areas of further study or exploration.

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