Special Issue "ICT in Education and Sustainable Futures"

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This special issue belongs to the section "Sustainable Education and Approaches".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (1 September 2018).

Special Issue Editor

Prof. Pilar Colás
E-Mail Website1 Website2
Guest Editor
Professor of Research Methods and Diagnosis in Education, Faculty of Education Sciences, University of Seville, Seville, 41014, Spain
Interests: ICT in Education; Research and Training for Gender Equity; Inclusion and Attention to Diversity in Education Systems; Teaching Training; Quantitative and Qualitative Research Methods in Education; Quantitative and Qualitative Data Analysis

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The conclusions of the Global Education Monitoring (GEM) Report 2017–2018, by UNESCO, show that the degree of development in the world of the Sustainable Development Goal on education [DM1] (SDG 4) is still insufficient, since there is still a huge gap between the current situation in education and the proposals of the 2030 Agenda to achieve a sustainable future. The purpose of the Sustainable Development Goal on education (SDG 4) is enshrined in: "Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all".

Research on ICT applications in educational systems confirms the potential of ICT to promote and encourage innovation and improve the quality of education, as well as to achieve greater inclusion and equity quotas. On the other hand, (online) lifelong learning training systems through different training modalities (E-Learning, B-Learning or M-Learning) make a more extensive and inclusive lifelong training possible.

Furthermore, ICT are also powerful pedagogical tools to raise awareness on key sustainability issues, such as human rights, peace and non-violence, global citizenship, multiculturalism, gender equity, etc.; as well as for the pedagogical treatment of curricular contents related to renewable energies, sustainable economic development, environmental education, etc.

However, ICT availability and access is unequal among the world population, which generates the concept of digital divide that is considered a key exclusion factor.

All these considerations guide the proposal of this monograph, which aims to collect studies and research, as well as theoretical contributions, which exemplify and inform good educational practices with ICT for a sustainable future.

Scientific contributions will be accepted, referred to:

  1. ICT applications in teaching-learning processes on sustainable education; Human rights, peace and non-violence, world citizenship, gender equity, multiculturalism, etc.
  2. Innovative experiences on ICT curricular inclusion for the development of sustainability contents; environmental education, renewable energies, sustainable economy, etc.
  3. Research on ICT educational applications to advance Gender Equity, Inclusion and Educational Quality.
  4. Studies on digital divide based on gender, socio-cultural level and geographical areas.

These contributions will surely involve a substantive scientific–educational advance, as they provide novel and successful educational proposals to achieve the sustainable development goals set out in the 2030 Agenda.

Prof. Pilar Colás
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short 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 thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1700 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • ICT and Lifelong Learning
  • ICT and Educational Quality
  • ICT and Educational Inclusion
  • ICT and Social Inclusion
  • ICT and Gender Equity
  • ICT and Multiculturalism
  • ICT and educational Curriculum for a sustainable future
  • Learning with ICT
  • Teacher Training in ICT
  • Skill training
  • Digital divide

Published Papers (10 papers)

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Open AccessArticle
Experimental Verification of Effectiveness of English Language Teaching Using MyEnglishLab
Sustainability 2019, 11(5), 1357; https://doi.org/10.3390/su11051357 - 05 Mar 2019
Abstract
The paper deals with a research focused on the blended learning model represented by an online component MyEnglishLab complementing English paper-based materials. At first, we viewed the blended learning model and we presented it in the context of sustainability in education. This is [...] Read more.
The paper deals with a research focused on the blended learning model represented by an online component MyEnglishLab complementing English paper-based materials. At first, we viewed the blended learning model and we presented it in the context of sustainability in education. This is followed by the description of MyEnglisLab component representing the distant part of blended learning. Then, we presented a complete research carried out within undergraduate students at the Faculty of Science, University of Hradec Kralove attending English courses, where we applied the mentioned teaching design and verifying the effectiveness of MyEnglishLab tool. The study compared two groups of students; the group using MyEnglishLab reached better results. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue ICT in Education and Sustainable Futures)
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Open AccessArticle
Preschool Teachers’ Perception of the Application of Information Communication Technology (ICT) in Taiwan
Sustainability 2019, 11(1), 114; https://doi.org/10.3390/su11010114 - 26 Dec 2018
Abstract
The aim of this study is to explore preschool teachers’ perception of the application of information communication technology in Taiwan using qualitative methodology in the form of interpretive phenomenology. Snowball sampling was used to select fourteen preschool teachers from public preschools. The data [...] Read more.
The aim of this study is to explore preschool teachers’ perception of the application of information communication technology in Taiwan using qualitative methodology in the form of interpretive phenomenology. Snowball sampling was used to select fourteen preschool teachers from public preschools. The data was collected from fourteen preschool teachers using one-to-one, semi-structured in-depth interviews, each of which lasted for one to two hours based on the guidelines for semi-structured interviews. The interviews were taped, recorded, and transcribed for the main textual analysis, which was based on a thematic analysis. Five themes were identified: (1) a formative and explorative growth process, (2) information devices: at once plentiful and limited, (3) decisions between control and freedom, (4) parent-teacher communications, and (5) trend-driven resource integration. Suggestions and implications for the utilization of ICT in classroom practice and its implementation in the curriculum are discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue ICT in Education and Sustainable Futures)
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Open AccessArticle
ICT and the UN’s Sustainable Development Goal for Education: Using ICT to Boost the Math Performance of Immigrant Youths in the US
Sustainability 2018, 10(12), 4584; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10124584 - 04 Dec 2018
Cited by 1
Abstract
In the context of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal for education, this study examines the potential of information, communication, and technology (ICT) as a way to provide quality education for all, with a focus on immigrant youth in the United States. The [...] Read more.
In the context of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal for education, this study examines the potential of information, communication, and technology (ICT) as a way to provide quality education for all, with a focus on immigrant youth in the United States. The study uses structural equation models (SEM) to analyze data from a nationally representative data set, Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS)-USA. Focusing on mathematics achievement among immigrant youth (with non-immigrant youth as a reference group), this study explores the effects of ICT access and two types of ICT use for educational purposes: generic and specific. The results indicate that ICT access and specific ICT use both have positive direct, indirect, and total effects on math performance for immigrant youths, while generic ICT use has only a nonsignificant negative effect. In nonimmigrant youths, these ICT variables showed a different pattern, with the effects of ICT access and specific ICT use being less pronounced, but generic ICT use exhibiting a significant negative effect. These findings show the potential role of ICT-mediated education in narrowing the achievement gap between immigrant and nonimmigrant students, thereby helping immigrants better integrate into their destination countries. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue ICT in Education and Sustainable Futures)
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Open AccessArticle
Smart Technology for Sustainable Curriculum: Using Drone to Support Young Students’ Learning
Sustainability 2018, 10(10), 3819; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10103819 - 22 Oct 2018
Cited by 2
Abstract
The study developed a sustainable curriculum in which one smart technology (drone) was employed to inspire student learning. The study investigated the effect of using drones on the development of students’ spatial visualization and sequencing skills and examined related instructional tasks for drone [...] Read more.
The study developed a sustainable curriculum in which one smart technology (drone) was employed to inspire student learning. The study investigated the effect of using drones on the development of students’ spatial visualization and sequencing skills and examined related instructional tasks for drone use in the classroom. An after-school drone-flying program was developed at a public elementary school in Taiwan, with 10 third-grade students voluntarily participating in a six-week educational experiment. During drone programming training, young children used a visual block programming language on tablet computers to code lightweight drones. A two-phase research model was adopted to collect the necessary information. In the first phase of the model, a design-based research methodology facilitated the overall instruction preparation process for the four-week workshops. The second phase of the model emphasized a mixed-method research approach, employing a quasi-experimental pretest and post-test design to analyze the effect of drone use and a qualitative method to observe students’ learning behavior and programming work. The results showed that drone programming significantly improved students’ learning of spatial visualization and sequencing skills. Gender, as a potential variable, only influenced students’ programming patterns. Specific programming styles, learning behaviors, and instructional design issues were identified for further discussion. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue ICT in Education and Sustainable Futures)
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Open AccessArticle
Internet Use by Secondary School Students: A Digital Divide in Sustainable Societies?
Sustainability 2018, 10(10), 3703; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10103703 - 16 Oct 2018
Abstract
Although the use of the Internet is generalised, its potential as a teaching tool is rarely taken into account. At the same time, there exists a digital divide affecting vulnerable or disadvantaged groups: students of foreign origin and students with special educational needs. [...] Read more.
Although the use of the Internet is generalised, its potential as a teaching tool is rarely taken into account. At the same time, there exists a digital divide affecting vulnerable or disadvantaged groups: students of foreign origin and students with special educational needs. It is necessary to identify how inequality can be overcome to reach the objectives set by the United Nations regarding sustainable forms of development for education and to foster more inclusive and egalitarian societies. In this research with students aged 12–16, the objective was to establish profiles according to gender, social class, ethnic background and educational special needs. We used a mixed methodological design, applying a questionnaire to 2734 students from 15 centres and qualitative data collection techniques. We made a descriptive and inferential analysis (SPSS program) and a qualitative data content analysis supported by the “Maxqda” program. The results show that, although most students have Internet access, students of foreign origin and students with special educational needs use this resource less frequently. There are significant differences for gender. Likewise, social divide has an impact on the learning potential of the Internet. Some proposals for improvement are provided, from the framework of the school, with a view to improving socio-educational equity and inclusion in societies in search of a more sustainable form of development. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue ICT in Education and Sustainable Futures)
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Open AccessArticle
Identification of Levels of Sustainable Consciousness of Teachers in Training through an E-Portfolio
Sustainability 2018, 10(10), 3700; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10103700 - 15 Oct 2018
Cited by 2
Abstract
The contents of Education for Sustainable Development should be included in teachers’ initial and advanced training programs. A sustainable consciousness is one of the main foundations for determining the key competences for sustainability. However, there are not many empirical studies that deal with [...] Read more.
The contents of Education for Sustainable Development should be included in teachers’ initial and advanced training programs. A sustainable consciousness is one of the main foundations for determining the key competences for sustainability. However, there are not many empirical studies that deal with consciousness from education. In this context, the e-portfolio appears as a tool that promotes reflection and critical thinking, which are key competences for consciousness development. This work intends to propose a categorization system to extract types of consciousness and identify the levels of consciousness of teachers in training. For this research work, which is of an eminently qualitative nature, we have selected 25 e-portfolios of students (teachers in pre-service training) in the last year of the School of Education at the University of Macerata (Italy). The qualitative methodological procedure that was followed enabled deducing three bases that shape the consciousness of teachers in training: thinking, representation of reality, and type of consciousness. We concluded that the attainment of a sustainable consciousness in teachers requires activating and developing higher levels of thinking, as well as a projective and macrostructural representation of reality. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue ICT in Education and Sustainable Futures)
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Open AccessArticle
Playing for a Sustainable Future: The Case of We Energy Game as an Educational Practice
Sustainability 2018, 10(10), 3639; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10103639 - 11 Oct 2018
Cited by 1
Abstract
Energy transition is key to achieving a sustainable future. However, in this transition, an often neglected pillar is raising awareness and educating individuals on the benefits, complexities, and urgency of renewable energy supply and energy efficiency. This paper exemplifies an educational practice to [...] Read more.
Energy transition is key to achieving a sustainable future. However, in this transition, an often neglected pillar is raising awareness and educating individuals on the benefits, complexities, and urgency of renewable energy supply and energy efficiency. This paper exemplifies an educational practice to create awareness on sustainable energy transition by playing a “serious” game, the We Energy Game. Concretely, this qualitative study aims to analyze communicational and educational aspects of the game by making use of a validated framework for serious games analysis, and to expose the opinion of players after maintaining group discussions. The analysis reveals a detailed insight of narrative elements, messages, and gameplay mechanisms, but also educative aspects to be considered by teachers if they are interested in putting the game into practice in their classes. The group discussion reveals that the game has been more successful in achieving cognitive (understanding/knowledge) and affective (emotion/interest and concern) engagement than in motivating attitudinal or behavioral engagement. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue ICT in Education and Sustainable Futures)
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Open AccessArticle
Augmented Reality and Mobile Devices: A Binominal Methodological Resource for Inclusive Education (SDG 4). An Example in Secondary Education
Sustainability 2018, 10(10), 3446; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10103446 - 27 Sep 2018
Cited by 7
Abstract
The rise of so-called emerging technologies is broadening the way in which students access information and in turn changing the way in which they can interact and the experiences to which they are exposed. Mobile devices are regarded as flexible tools that facilitate [...] Read more.
The rise of so-called emerging technologies is broadening the way in which students access information and in turn changing the way in which they can interact and the experiences to which they are exposed. Mobile devices are regarded as flexible tools that facilitate access to information in different formats and in any environment. For its part, Augmented Reality is a technique that, through mobile tools, can enhance the globalization of content and access to contextual information in various ways. Together, the globalization of mobile devices and Augmented Reality contribute to an inclusive, equitable, and quality education, as mentioned by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in goal four on Sustainable Development (Sustainable Development Goals 4 (SDG 4)). This article analyses the binomial Augmented Reality-mobile devices, and takes a conceptual approach to these technological environments, both the technique and the tool, in the context of quality education. To assess the potential of Augmented Reality-mobile devices as a methodological learning resource, a learning unit of Secondary Education is presented in the field of Technology, enriched with different materials related with Augmented Reality. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue ICT in Education and Sustainable Futures)
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Open AccessArticle
Preparing Public Pedagogies with ICT: The Case of Pesticides and Popular Education in Brazil
Sustainability 2018, 10(10), 3377; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10103377 - 21 Sep 2018
Cited by 3
Abstract
This article analyzes the conditions through which it is possible to launch a project of public pedagogy with information and communications technologies (ICT) on environmental education and pesticides. This is a public pedagogy that is agreed between diverse actors (universities, environmental agencies, local [...] Read more.
This article analyzes the conditions through which it is possible to launch a project of public pedagogy with information and communications technologies (ICT) on environmental education and pesticides. This is a public pedagogy that is agreed between diverse actors (universities, environmental agencies, local authorities, schools, and farmers) and adapted to their needs and demands, based on the study of an ongoing project. The methodology is qualitative, with interviews with key informants and a Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats (SWOT) analysis developed with the contestants. In the development of the project, the conditions in which the theme of the project is lived and worked by the different actors who were included have been highlighted. The discussions that were held offered different points of view about the priorities of public health, environmental problems, and social and economic outputs. Among the conclusions, some difficulties came up about how to start public pedagogies that are managed by citizenship. The idea came from the community. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue ICT in Education and Sustainable Futures)
Open AccessArticle
The Use of Information and Communications Technology in Vocational Education and Training—Premise of Sustainability
Sustainability 2018, 10(5), 1466; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10051466 - 08 May 2018
Cited by 3
Abstract
Vocational education and training of human resources in tourism play an important role in the development of the tourism industry and hence in the national, regional and global economy. In this paper, we aimed to analyze the effective use of smart education in [...] Read more.
Vocational education and training of human resources in tourism play an important role in the development of the tourism industry and hence in the national, regional and global economy. In this paper, we aimed to analyze the effective use of smart education in the teaching and learning process in tourism. The research was conducted over three academic years (2013–2014, 2014–2015, 2015–2016) in 12 high schools providing tourism specializations in Constanta County, Romania. The main method used was an experiment. Thus, we used information and communication technology (ICT) methods in the educational process (the independent variable) in order to compare students’ results to those obtained in control classes, in which only traditional teaching methods were used. The results of our research confirmed our initial hypotheses, namely the fact that by using ICT methods within tourism classes, students understand and assimilate specialised knowledge faster and better, and they form and develop specific skills at a higher level than by using traditional teaching methods. This means that by using the latest technology in classes for teaching and learning disciplines in tourism, it is possible to develop, by the end of the superior cycle of high school, the future qualified human resources required for sustainable tourism. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue ICT in Education and Sustainable Futures)
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