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Special Issue "Sustainable Technology-Enhanced Education: Learning Processes, Technologies and Environments"

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

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 September 2021) | Viewed by 3692

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Åke Grönlund
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
School of Business, Örebro University, Örebro, Sweden
Interests: Åke’s research concerns the use of digital technologies in various human activities. The common denominator involved in all projects is the desire to understand how people relate to technology in their work, their organizations, and their activities in private life, and how technology can be used for improvement. In particular, a focus is on the fields of education and e-government.
Dr. Olga Viberg
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Brinellvägen 8, 114 28 Stockholm, Sweden
Interests: learning analytics in higher education; the application of mobile technology (in language learning) in education; mobile learning analytics; the integration of formal and informal learning environments; design for learning; self-regulated learning; computer-assisted collaborative learning; digital and data literacy

Special Issue Information

Dear colleagues,

Digital technologies are increasingly used in education, and increasingly such technologies are becoming “smarter” in the sense that they are becoming more autonomous. These technologies include various techniques and tools that can be used for mapping and to understand and raise awareness of the learning process, progress, and problems. Digital technologies do this by collecting and presenting data, such as in the form of learner- or teacher-facing dashboards, but also by engaging in formative communication with learners based on analysis of learner and teacher activity.

Digital technologies engage actively and interactively in both learning processes and teaching practices. Sometimes this engagement is direct in order to better understand and support the learning process, for example by fostering students’ self-regulated learning or collaborative learning skills. Other times this engagement indirect by providing teachers with learning or teaching analytics, so as to help them direct their personal engagement with students’ work more accurately.

One overall goal in this field is the optimization of student learning and the settings in which it occurs. Another goal is helping teachers make the biggest possible impact on student learning, both quantitatively and qualitatively.

Access to teachers is limited in many places. One of the UN sustainability goals is for all girls and boys to complete primary and secondary education by 2030. A lack of teachers is a challenge in many developing countries. In this context, smart learning technologies can provide ways for more people to access education. Meanwhile, in developed countries, teaching and learning practices could become more effective with support from technologies that can provide better conditions for student learning, for example providing more adaptive learning paths and more personalized learning across formal and informal learning environments.

In order to be sustainable for these purposes, these digital technologies need to be pedagogical in nature, socially competent, and affordable.

This Special Issue will outline key issues and barriers involved with engaging technology directly in teaching and learning processes, providing interesting examples.

We seek contributions presenting, analyzing, and evaluating sustainable, innovative, and scalable pedagogical practices using smart technology. We welcome both empirical and theoretical contributions. Topics of interest include:

  • Technology-enhanced learning environments;
  • Issues related to maintaining sustainability in education in the context of rapidly developing technologies;
  • Evaluations of smart-technology-enhanced learning scenarios in educational settings;
  • Novel methodological approaches to facilitating the digital transformation of schools with smart technologies;
  • General sustainability aspects, such as student privacy and ethics, when using “smart” technologies in education;
  • Design and evaluation of smart-technology-assisted support mechanisms for teachers and students.

Prof. Åke Grönlund
Dr. Olga Viberg
Guest Editors

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 submissions that pass pre-check are 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 2200 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

  • smart technologies
  • sustainability
  • education
  • learning analytics
  • teaching analytics
  • digitalization

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Research

Article
Sustaining Synchronous Interaction Effectiveness in Distance Writing Courses: A Mixed Method Study in a KSA University
Sustainability 2021, 13(24), 13675; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132413675 - 10 Dec 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1638
Abstract
The sudden transition to online learning during the COVID-19 pandemic has been challenging for many learners and teachers due to the fact that most universities suddenly shifted to online learning without providing adequate time for preparing and training teachers and learners in using [...] Read more.
The sudden transition to online learning during the COVID-19 pandemic has been challenging for many learners and teachers due to the fact that most universities suddenly shifted to online learning without providing adequate time for preparing and training teachers and learners in using interactive educational technologies. Such challenges are even more pronounced for language instructors in cultivating and sustaining interactions among learners, especially in writing courses that demand active engagement and interactions. Therefore, this study focused on what and how a writing instructor did through technology in creating an interactive writing environment for KSA learners joining five online writing courses and how learners perceived interactions and identifies the major factors affecting their perceptions. The data were collected from multiple sources: WhatsApp chats, Google Docs chats and comments, screencast recorded discussions, students’ texts, and their responses to an electronic (e-) survey as well as follow-up interviews. The study revealed that in connecting Google Docs to the Blackboard Collaborate Ultra, the instructor engaged learners in multidirectional and multimodal interactions and text writing and revising. The WhatsApp group was also used for individual learner-learner and learner-teacher interaction illustrating support and consultation-seeking behaviors of learners beyond the online classroom time. The learners’ perceptions of technology-mediated interactions (overall, learner-learner and learner-teacher) in the online writing courses were at high levels, though such perceptions varied according to several factors, including socio-demographic characteristics. The study concludes by offering useful pedagogical and research implications. Full article
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Article
Sustainable Approaches for Accelerated Learning
Sustainability 2021, 13(21), 11994; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132111994 - 29 Oct 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1079
Abstract
Sustainable education does not yet have a widely accepted definition in the literature. In this work, we start from the Sustainable Development Goal of Quality Education for All (SDG4) and interpret sustainable education as increasing the quality of learning whilst conserving the resources [...] Read more.
Sustainable education does not yet have a widely accepted definition in the literature. In this work, we start from the Sustainable Development Goal of Quality Education for All (SDG4) and interpret sustainable education as increasing the quality of learning whilst conserving the resources required to produce and deliver it. From this interpretation, we argue that one path towards realising sustainable education is through the identification of teaching practices that satisfy these conditions of increased quality whilst conserving resources. We present an overview of four case studies, where the conditions for sustainable education are demonstrated through the effective use of people, processes and technologies. Each case represents an intervention that was made to improve the quality of education within an intensive three-month project, which trained immigrants to be employable in the IT industry as junior software developers. Whilst the interventions are independent and unique, they are connected by the themes of quality improvement and resource conservation. In isolation, each specific case produced improvements for both teachers and students; however, it is by combining such approaches that we can start to realise the path towards sustainable education that will help lead to a better quality of education for all. The findings of this work suggest that quality education does not come at the cost of increased resource demands; rather, approaches exist that can be considered to satisfy the conditions for sustainable education. Full article
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