Education for a Digital World: Advice, Guidelines and Effective Practice from Around Globe
David Harper, Harvard Medical School
Pub Date: 2008
ISBN 13: 978-1-8949752-9-2
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Education for a Digital World is comprehensive in its coverage of educational technology. The edited book format provides the breadth and depth of read more
Education for a Digital World is comprehensive in its coverage of educational technology. The edited book format provides the breadth and depth of coverage one would expect in a book on this topic. The book would be useful for either undergraduate or graduate courses that address how to use technology effectively in education. It differs from other educational technology textbooks in that it does not focus on how to use specific technology tools to create educational materials, but instead deals with larger philosophical issues of technology use in education and the theory, design principles, and processes one would consider when implementing educational technology. The book is divided into 5 major sections that cover: the impact of technology on education, how to design and develop online instruction, issues and standards related to implementing technology, e-learning, and ways to engage and communicate with online learners. The features that made the book particularly useful were the learning outcomes at the beginning of each chapter, the glossaries, the lists of references, the links to websites, tips, appendices, and case studies. Because the book was published in 2008, it does not cover some of more current educational technology topics, such as microlearning and virtual reality. It would be nice to see the book updated to include these topics.
The book’s content appears accurate, error-free and unbiased. There is still little empirical evidence for the existence of learning styles, so it would be important to note this in the chapters that mention this topic. The chapter on instructional design could be improved by including information on the history of ISD and information on more recent instructional design models. The chapter on assessment and evaluation could be improved by addressing how to align assessment methods with instructional methods, rather than how to use specific software to create a quiz.
Given the publication date of 2008, Educational for a Digital World is remarkably current. There are a few chapters where the focus on specific technologies (such as the chapter on Assessment and Evaluation and the one on Social Media) makes them less useful, as they are somewhat dated. Overall, the book addresses issues related to conceptualizing, planning, and implementing educational technology, rather than how to use specific instructional software to create educational materials. Consequently, the book has maintained currency despite the 2008 publication date. This book would be very useful as an instructional text when paired with software-specific instruction (how to use current software applications to create technology-based instruction).
Educational for a Digital World is clearly written, easy to read, contains accessible prose, and provides glossaries of terms to address technical terms that may be unfamiliar to the reader. Many of the chapters effectively use graphic images to explain the text, while others do not use visual images at all. It would be nice to see more consistency in the use of visuals throughout the book as research indicates that visual images, when used effectively, may impact learning and retention.
The book is consistent in framework and terminology, even though it is an edited book with chapters written by different authors. The book is easy to read and use as each chapter contains the same sections and formatting.
Educational for a Digital World is a collection of self-contained chapters that cover independent topics. As the chapter topics are unrelated to each other, the book design is naturally more modular. This means that readers do not need to follow a linear process when navigating the text, and that they can read the chapters in any order. Within each chapter, the content is organized into predictable segments (learning outcomes, introduction, chapter content, references, student questions, appendices, and glossaries) that have been subdivided with headings and subheadings. The organization of the chapters into articulated smaller segments makes the chapter content easy to scan, navigate, and read.
Education for a Digital World was well structured and easy to use. The book opened with a table of contents where the chapters were arranged into 5 logically organized sections. Immediately following the table of contents, abstracts were provided for each chapter. Following the abstracts, the chapters were arranged into 5 logically organized sections that made the book easy to read.
Overall, the book’s interface was easy to use. The only feature that presented any difficulty was the 2-column format of the book. In trying to read the PDF on a MacBook Air, it was necessary to scroll both up and down to read a single page. This was inconvenient, as impeded the flow of reading. It would have been easier to read and navigate the PDF on a small computer screen if the pages were a single column, rather than a 2-column format.
There did not appear to be grammatical errors in the book.
Educational for a Digital World is culturally relevant and would be useful in planning educational technology interventions for a range of learners from a variety of backgrounds. There were no culturally insensitive references (or images) apparent in the book. The content of the book would be useful to an audience interested in planning and using educational technology interventions on a global scale (as in a multinational company), or to an audience interested in designing educational technology interventions for a variety of learners in a multicultural setting.
Educational for a Digital World would make a good companion text in a course where students must understand larger technology implementation issues while also learning how to use current software applications to create technology-based instruction. The sections on Preparing Online Courses, Implementing Technology, and E-Learning in Action would be especially useful in a technology course where students are required to design and develop technology-based educational interventions.
Education for a Digital World while not covering every issue associated with on-line education explores a wide range of issues and practical read more
Education for a Digital World while not covering every issue associated with on-line education explores a wide range of issues and practical considerations for educators. The textbook presents a balance of practical issues to consider (i.e,course management software and various applications), legal issues (i.e, copyright) and big picture / theoretical issues. (i.e., teaching to different learning styles and ethical considerations in providing consistent, educational opportunities across cultures and geographic regions).
Material is accurate with relevant sources cited.
Education for a Digital World was published in 2008. Due to incredible growth of learning technologies since 2008, some educators might consider using a textbook published more recently. Surprisingly, most of the chapters provided helpful insight to delivering effective on-line education. In almost all of the chapters, authors discuss ways educators can use hardware and software still available and widely in use. Most relevant were the chapters covering practical issues like planning and assessment as these techniques are essential for any learning environment. Chapter 27, covering social media for adult online learners and educators was less relevant as the popularity and current practical uses of sites such as twitter and facebook present challenges and opportunities for educators that did not emerge at the time this chapter was written. To keep the textl relevant, it is recommended authors update and add chapters to cover technologies such as the flipped classroom and virtual reality.
Concepts are expressed clearly through the textbook.
Each chapter is written by a different author. As a result, writing styles, prospective, content, and structure vary from chapter to chapter. Given the diversity of issues covered, length, and detail provided in each chapter most readers will gravitate towards specific chapters relevant for individual learning or teaching goals. The textbook opens with helpful summaries of each chapter. Each chapter begins by presenting learning outcomes and a chapter summary and concludes with glossary of terms and references.
Education for Digital World is a comprehensive resource for a department providing resources to future educators or educators, new to on-line instruction and digital course management. Each chapter is written for a particular audience and presents opportunities for focused discussion, research, and class projects. Instructors teaching semester based courses to future educators will likely focus on key chapters as opposed to the entire textbook. For example, educators wanting to explore how to use various software applications in their classrooms are likely focus on chapter 22 and 23, computer based resources for learning and on-line games. Administrators wanting to explore how to implement on-line learning in a school or school system are likely to focus on chapters 17 and 18, E-Learning Standards and Leadership and E-learning Change Processes for Implementing Educational Technologies
The textbook is organized into five major parts, with each part containing four to five relevant chapters focusing on the broader themes. The five major parts, Impact of instructional technologies, preparing on-line courses, implementing technologies, e-learning in action, and engagement and communication take the reader through the process of creating on-line instruction and leaves the reader with many relevant examples and issues to consider
Learners navigate through the textbook using acrobat reader. The bookmarks feature in acrobat reader is essential to navigating through the text and the content of each chapter. Each chapter opens with an animated graphic to inform the reader of the chapter’s main focus. The glossary of terms is helpful to review prior to reading each chapter.
Textbook is free from incorrect spelling, punctuation, run on sentences, ect.
On-line learning technologies have changed and broadened the fundamental barrier and norms of communication across cultures and societies, in particular between instructors and students and within student groups. Each chapter’s authors does an outstanding job of forecasting these changes and guiding educators to change their fundamental roles from leaders of the educational process to facilitators. Chapter 19, Building Communities of Effective Practice, is focused on the impact of technology on team based learning and points out how effective practices positively motivates and holds accountable all learners to have a stake in the process. Other chapters present helpful advice on making on-line learning accessible to learners with disabilities and learners possessing a wide range of learning styles.
The book covers a wide array of topics relating to online education. The first part provides a broad background of readings related to instructional read more
The book covers a wide array of topics relating to online education. The first part provides a broad background of readings related to instructional technologies. Some of the sections in the second part, which covers preparation of online courses, could likely fit in the previous section, but do fit well in this area as well. The next two parts of the books, implementation and action, are also closely related, but differ in that part three focuses on theoretical constructions of online education (with an eye towards praxis) while part four delves into more applied aspects. The final section bookends the readings from part one while at the same time providing researchers with helpful topics to explore. For example, online collaboration and social media use are explained at length in two chapters here. While there was no overall index or glossary in the book, the chapter abstracts appearing before the introductions will help readers to select from areas that will be most useful for their needs. Each chapter includes a glossary of terms.
Topics are accurately covered throughout the textbook. For example, the chapter on accessibility and universal design explores the history of Section 508 before delving into the various aspects of UDL needed to ensure that a course meets the needs of various learners. The chapter on general principles of instructional design covers the need for instructors to align objectives with learning activities. Case studies, such as the chapter on linking students between Canada and Ghana, explore how researchers conducted studies and presented data according to the methods utilized, bearing in mind that such studies were accurate in context while exploring possibilities for replication.
Online education is a difficult topic to write about in terms of relevance and longevity, since the technology changes on an almost daily basis. The key to conducting research in this area is exploring how technology changes to fit the needs of learners, instructors, and policymakers. In that sense, this book does a great job with making sure that researchers can utilize the material presented in this book for an extended period of time. For example, we know already know that social media is here to stay. So rather than focusing on specific applications as they pertain simply to 2017, the chapter on social media instead explores the impact of social media on adult language learners before delving into best practice and theories of online pedagogy. Most readers should find the content in this book relatively easy to implement in their own work.
The text is written in clear, accessible language. It is apparent that the editorial team worked closely with the contributors, and with one another, to make sure that readers would get a book that is easy to follow. Each chapter effectively makes use of jargon in a way that introduces readers to key concepts while at the same time maintains attention. Whenever needed, graphics are used to enhance the textual interface. For example, the chapter on social media goes so far as to break down Bloom’s original taxonomy with Anderson’s revised taxonomy by including a handy chart of reliable verbs for ease of reading.
Each chapter begins with a graphic that shows the overview of the topic. References are hyperlinked, and upon checking several links, these worked and provided useful information beyond the scope of the chapters. Glossed terms appearing at the end of every chapter allowed me to recall content without having to read through multiple times. Each chapter starts with a section on Learning Outcomes, which allows readers to hone in on the information they need to understand the content.
My favorite part of “picking up” this book was that each chapter was hyperlinked from the table of contents! It would have been even more helpful, though, if a link to the Table of Contents (and perhaps to the beginning of each major section) appeared at the start and end of each chapter, allowing for greater accessibility. Nevertheless, I always found myself being able to easily skim each chapter for information, which was due to the existence of headings and subheadings. At no point did I find the text to be overly self-referential; contributors in this book were carefully selected to provide information that would be useful for readers interested in the topic of online education. For example, the chapter on emerging technologies begins with a solidly-written history of the Internet and cites appropriate sources, including Ross Mayfield and Tim O’Reilly, keeping discussion as on-point and objective as possible.
As a typical anthology, it makes sense that the book is organized the way it is. The book starts and ends on theoretical concepts related to online education. Case studies, instructional design models, and topics specific to individual contexts constitute the middle three sections of the book. For example, the chapter on e-learning standards studies how learning objectives vary across specific circumstances, such as the Aviation Industry CBT Committee (AICC),Sharable Courseware Object Reference Model (SCORM), and the IMS Global Learning Consortium (IMS).
Each chapter starts with a section on Learning Outcomes, which allows readers to hone in on the information they need to understand the content. Therefore, it is relatively easy to read through more than a few chapters in one sitting. After having checked each chapter from the linkable table of contents, I didn’t find any errors related to navigation problems. Blank pages at the end of every chapter made it easy to view content from this book on the sidebar of a PDF reader.
After spending roughly 6 hours reading this book, I didn’t locate any grammatical errors.
This book explored the topic of online education from a variety of perspectives. It was nice to see such a well-rounded text on studies related to a topic that I am particularly interested in reading about in my own work.
As someone who is always looking for up to date texts on online education, both for conducting academic researching as well as for applying that research towards pedagogy and curriculum, I can say that this textbook was a pleasant find. It was great to see that online education has so many places to go in terms of extending what we already know to be true in face to face education in a variety of arenas, including how the Internet works, to the role of adult language learners, to the usefulness of building communities of practice.
This book is very comprehensive, touching on all of the major aspects of eLearning through the lens of instructional design. The chapters are laid read more
This book is very comprehensive, touching on all of the major aspects of eLearning through the lens of instructional design. The chapters are laid out and grouped in a logical manner that provide a good sense of digital tools and teaching. This book also provides a unique perspective on this topic by brining in global perspectives.
This text appears to be accurate and error-free. The basics of instructional design and eLearning design are well-represented. I do think some of the chapters focus too much on specific outdated technologies (NetSupport and WebQuery in Chapter 14, Multiply in Chapter 27). Many of the screen shots show images of Office 2003 products - I think when advising about technology it would be good to have more recent examples. The assessment and evaluation chapter, in my opinion, focuses too narrowly on specific strategies and not enough on what assessment and evaluation are, considering they are very distinct practices in instructional design. There are out of date references to instructional design standards (ASTD is now ATD).
When referring to any technology, it is very easy to get out of date quickly. But this text identifies recent trends and issues that are currently relevant in the field like game-based learning and teaching with social media. Some of the specific tools are out of date though as are some of the images (myspace!). Particularly in regards to social media and current technology tools, I feel that it is important to be as up-to-date as possible. I do think this book is written is such a way that updates and substitutions would be fairly easy to make.
This text is written very well by a variety of contributors. Examples, tips, and case studies are included in many of the chapters. Key concepts are explained and usually illustrated by examples, diagrams, etc.
This text is very consistent in layout and content. Terms are consistently used and each chapter has a general outline that it seems to follow. I like the tips and guidelines section of Chapter 6 and would like to see that framework extended to other chapters.
This text is easily divisible into sections and chapters based on how it was set up. There are multiple chapters that could be pulled out and used independently of the text as a whole. Each chapter is also easily divisible and the headings and sections make them easy to read.
All topics in this text are presented in a logical, straightforward manner. The organization makes it easy to find topics and chapters.
The text has no interface issues and displays correctly. There is nothing in the text that would confuse or distract the reader.
No grammatical errors were evident.
The intent of this text is to give an overview of instructional technologies globally. As such, the content of the chapters and the examples used are very culturally relevant. I cannot speak to how current all of the examples are, however.
This is a great text overall. It flows well and is logically organized and comprehensive. I think if some of the technologies and images were updated, it would be an extremely useful text for any eLearning class.
Table of Contents
Part 1: The Impact of Instructional Technologies
- 1 Emerging Technologies in E-learning
- 2 Virtual Design Studios: Solving Learning Problems in Developing Countries
- 3 Challenges Confronted and Lessons (Un)Learned: Linking Students from the University of Ghana and
- Kwantlen University College
- 4 Addressing Diversity in Design of Online Courses
- 5 Mobile Learning in Developing Countries: Present Realities and Future Possibilities
- 6 The Impact of Technology on Education
Part 2: Preparing Online Courses
- 7 Learning Management Systems
- 8 Exploring Open Source for Educators: We’re Not in Kansas Anymore – Entering OS
- 9 Quality Assurance by Design
- 10 General Principles of Instructional Design
- 11 Accessibility and Universal Design
- 12 Articulation and Transfer of Online Courses
- 13 Planning Your Online Course
- 14 Assessment and Evaluation
Part 3: Implementing Technology
- 15 Understanding Copyright: Knowing Your Rights and Knowing When You’re Right
- 16 ‘Open Licences’ of Copyright for Authors, Educators, and Librarians
- 17 E-learning Standards
- 18 Leadership and E-learning: Change Processes for Implementing Educational Technologies
- 19 Building Communities of Practice
Part 4: E-learning in Action
- 20 Instructional Strategies
- 21 Media Selection
- 22 Computer-Based Resources for Learning
- 23 Computer-Based Games for Learning
- 24 Evaluating and Improving Your Online Teaching Effectiveness
Part 5: Engagement and Communication
- 25 Tools for Online Engagement and Communication
- 26 Techno Expression
- 27 Social Media for Adult Online Learners and Educators
- 28 Online Collaboration: An Overview
- 29 Identity in Online Education
- 30 Supporting E-learning through Communities of Practice
- 31 Looking Forward: Stories of Practice
About the Book
Education for a Digital World contains a comprehensive collection of proven strategies and tools for effective online teaching, based on the principles of learning as a social process. It offers practical, contemporary guidance to support e-learning decision-making, instructional choices, as well as program and course planning, and development.
Practical advice, real-life examples, case studies, and useful resources supply in-depth perspectives about structuring and fostering socially engaging learning in an online environment. A plethora of e-learning topics provide insights, ideas, and usable tools. Tips and evidence-based theory guide administrators, program and course developers, project teams, and teachers through the development of online learning opportunities.
Education for a Digital World is an indispensable guide, resource, textbook and manual for policymakers and practitioners in developing and developed countries.
About the Contributors
David G. Harper, PhD, is the associate director for research for the Division of Geriatric Psychiatry at McLean Hospital. He is also an assistant professor in psychology in the Department of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School.
Dr. Harper’s research focuses on the behavioral symptoms of neurodegenerative illnesses. He is author of numerous journal articles and has presented national and internationally on this topic.