Special Issue "Information and Communication Technology in Higher Education"


A special issue of Informatics (ISSN 2227-9709).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 March 2016)

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Diego Bonilla

Communication Studies Department, Coordinator, Digital Communication and Information Minor, California State University, Sacramento, 6000 J St. Sacramento, CA 95819, USA
Website: http://www.hypergraphia.com
Interests: computer-mediated communication; new media engineering; digital storytelling; data tracking; online learning; immersive virtual environments; critical thinking in electronic informational environments; flipped classes; synchronous and asynchronous online collaboration; open educational resources
Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Mark Stoner

Communication Studies Department, California State University, Sacramento, 6000 J St. Sacramento, CA 95819, USA
Website: http://www.csus.edu/indiv/s/stonerm/
Interests: instructional communication; mediated learning; relationship of communication to thinking, learning and teaching; rhetorical criticism

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Disruptive Technologies, Higher Education, and Harnessing the Promise of a Revolution.

Pressures for the use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) are ubiquitous in higher education. In an environment of constant change, technological innovations are outpacing our ability to identify and appropriate the affordances of those innovations for teaching and learning. The information regarding the affordances of an instructional technology often does not originate from research because the time-span of scholarly endeavors investigating the use of the instructional technology is outpaced by technological evolution. In many instances, information about the affordances of a technology comes from vendors touting the potentialities of their technology rather than empirical research. Beyond teaching, research and service activities, faculty in higher education increasingly are challenged with vetting constantly evolving software and hardware that, in social and commercial environments, privilege the use of new technologies for work and entertainment.

The questions in higher education regarding ICT use, in general, and disruptive technologies (DT), in particular, go beyond simply knowing about particular technologies (e.g., gaming, adaptive learning, etc.)  Promulgators of the inherent value and inevitability of “disruptive technologies” create an affirmative vision of technologies that may or may not be appropriate for the complex social, and now technological, environment of the modern university classroom.

Numerous questions about the relevance, appropriateness, and effects of “disruptive technologies” beg addressing. Here are just a few:

•      The term “disruptive technology" is often used in place of “new technology” or “alternative technology”, when disruptive technology is a particular kind of technology and market phenomenon. What exactly is a disruptive technology in higher education?

•      Discussion in the literature often fails to differentiate the nature of education from product manufacture or sales. What are the processes by which disruptive technologies may find a location for use in the unique context of higher education? What are the drivers for adoption of a disruptive technology in higher education? In higher education, how do we distinguish technologies for class management from technologies for instruction and learning?

•      Probably the most important question is, how can we predict the multidimensional effects of implementing disruptive technologies in higher education? If adopted, what new privacy/security concerns do such technologies, arise? What are the real costs of failed attempts to adopt evolving technologies?

Fast technological development is a given at this point in history, but its effects in higher education still have yet to be determined. Numerous and critical questions about what instructional problems may be mitigated, solved, or created by new technologies, particularly those deemed “disruptive technologies” have yet to be answered. The promise of a revolution in higher education to transform its efficiency and effectiveness sparked by disruptive technologies is one that must be carefully examined.

We are soliciting studies that develop and elaborate our understanding of the nature and role of disruptive technologies in the context of higher education. It is important that we get past the hype cycles of ICT/DT innovations, and systematically examine the potentialities and limitations of technology generally and disruptive technology, in particular.

Studies are drawn from a variety of perspectives, methods and disciplines are invited.

Prof. Dr. Diego Bonilla
Prof. Dr. Mark Stoner
Guest Editors


Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. Papers will be published continuously (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are refereed through a peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Informatics is an international peer-reviewed Open Access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. For the first couple of issues the Article Processing Charge (APC) will be waived for well-prepared manuscripts. English correction and/or formatting fees of 250 CHF (Swiss Francs) will be charged in certain cases for those articles accepted for publication that require extensive additional formatting and/or English corrections.


  • higher education
  • information communication technology
  • adoption
  • culture
  • learning
  • teaching
  • collaboration
  • privacy
  • security

Published Papers (3 papers)

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n° 13
by  and
Informatics 2016, 3(3), 13; doi:10.3390/informatics3030013
Received: 29 March 2016 / Revised: 30 May 2016 / Accepted: 20 July 2016 / Published: 29 July 2016
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(This article belongs to the Special Issue Information and Communication Technology in Higher Education)
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n° 7
by  and
Informatics 2016, 3(2), 7; doi:10.3390/informatics3020007
Received: 18 March 2016 / Revised: 26 May 2016 / Accepted: 10 June 2016 / Published: 17 June 2016
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(This article belongs to the Special Issue Information and Communication Technology in Higher Education)
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p. 174-189
Informatics 2014, 1(2), 174-189; doi:10.3390/informatics1020174
Received: 20 May 2014 / Revised: 23 July 2014 / Accepted: 25 August 2014 / Published: 8 September 2014
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Last update: 18 September 2015

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