2020 Typology of Free Web-based Learning Technologies

In order to support educators and researchers worldwide to use the most up-to-date technologies and best understand the web-based technologies terrain, my colleague Jodie Torrington and I have just released the 2020 Typology of Free Web-based Learning Technologies. The 2020 Typology includes 236 freely available web-based learning tools, and constitutes a thorough update of the 2015 Typology of Web 2.0 Learning Technologies that I released on on the Educause website. The 2020 Typology of Free Web-based Learning Technologies includes 76 new tools, removes 62 tools that were no longer valid, and adds three new clusters of technologies. The change in name from “Web 2.0” to “Free Web-based” reflects the diffusion and general acceptance of online tools within the educational technology ecosystem. A schematic diagram of the 2020 Typology of Free Web-based Learning Technologies is provided below (see Figure 1).

Typology of Free Web-based Learning Technologies 2020 image

Figure 1. The 2020 Typology of Free Web-based Learning Technologies

The main article (see below) provides brief descriptions, example tools and pedagogical uses for each category, in order to support ease of conceptualization and application. Comparing the 2020 Typology to its predecessor makes it possible to gauge trends in online learning technologies over the last five years, for instance the unsustainability of many smaller tools, the marketisation of many others, the trend towards more integrated platforms of tools, and greater dominance by larger providers. The paper concludes by inferring future trends in the online learning technology landscape. The 2020 Typology of Free Web-based Learning Technologies can be downloaded below.

Download: Typology of Free Web-based Learning Technologies 2020 (PDF, 354KB)

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Google Education Summit – 3rd December 2019

A summary of pertinent information from presentations is provided below.

Marie Efstathiou, Google

  • Approximately 75 attendees at the Google Computing Educator Summit this year – biggest ever.
  • The Google Computing Educator Professional Development Grants are being managed internationally by Marie Efstathiou. The grants next year will be focused on reaching underrepresented groups (e.g. Indigenous) that haven’t received the benefit of funding and PD rather than scaling to all people. Grants Open on the 26th of January 2020.
  • CSER offering free PD in every state (officer in each state)
  • “Grow With Google” program – Google is running workshops in every electorate in Australia – being led by Google Marketing – but also enables Google to run PD for teachers and workshops for students in more remote places in Australia.
  • CS First had over 100,000 participants for Australia and NZ – a huge outcome.
  • “Careers with Code” Magazine is the main career and employment outreach from Google (produced by Refraction Media)
  • Aiming to reach and inform new groups – politicians, parents, etc.

Kim Vernon, ACARA

  • Year 8 compulsory implementation of Digital Technologies Curriculum in 2020.
  • Online Safety curriculum connection forthcoming (13th December, 2019) based on gap analysis in collaboration with the eSafety Commissioner.
  • The Digital Technologies in Focus (DTiF) project had 9 curriculum officers and targeted 160 disadvantaged schools nationally. Uses a teachers as designers approach. Project has shown that school executive support is critical, finding the ‘why’ hooks are critical, helping with assessment and planning, working to understand the language
  • Follow via Twitter at @ACARAeduau

Tim Bell, New Zealand Curriculum Update

  • New Zealand new and revised DT content takes a breadth before depth, not to hard but not too easy, trying to find relevance
  • Due for implementation next year (2020)
  • Note: The New Zealand Higher School Certificate is called the National Certificate of Educational Achievement (NCEA)

Life Education Australia

Scrappy Marketing, Google

  • Focuses on how to market with zero budget
  • 71% of GenX turn to Youtube to learn how to gain a new skills
  • Videos with “how to” in title had 4.5 billion hours watch time
  • Always competing with other channels, so focus on stories not messages
  • Put videos online to help student who was sick – democretisation of education
  • Lookup: http://youtube.com/learning
  • Influencer marketing – target people and distribute through people who are already reaching your market
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EduTech Asia 2019

Notes (see http://slido.com for interactive conference backchannel #edutechasia):

  • Check out Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) Singapore: https://www2.imda.gov.sg/
  • Google Education Platform includes: GSuite for Education, Google Classroom, CS First, Chromebook, Google Cloud Platform, Google Programs
  • Google education tools now starting to include AI for assessment and marking
  • Google have used Machine Learning and AI to provide tutoring with emotional engagement and significantly improve learning outcomes (SARA)
  • Google Unizin – uses anonymised data from 25 universities to identify students who are at risk of failure.
  • Abu breast cancer early detection inspiring high school video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JdFdOmWPav0
  • Benefits of XR: boosts interest/engagement, provides visualisations for physical environments, may improve knowledge retention

Pasi Sahlberg – The new digital divide

  • Pasi Sahlberg presents that in the last ten years we have seen a reduction in wellbeing due to anxiet,y depression, social challenges, behavioural disorders, addictions, suicidal behaviours inadequate sleep. At the same time increase in screen time.
  • Pasi is doing “Growing up Digital Australia” report to mirror the the Growing up Digital Alberta study.
  • Lower income children spend 8+ hours on screens while children from higher income families spend 6+
  • Is it that higher income families get more human interaction as part of their parenting?
  • Pew research centre shows that lower income households are likely to be impacted by the digital hopework gap (have to do their homework on a cellphone).
  • Three things that we need to do with children:
    • 1. Learn self-control
    • 2. Sleep better (Pasi wears a sleep ring!)
    • 3. Play more outdoors – at least one hour
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Artificial Intelligence symposium 02/08/19

Presentation link: http://bit.ly/YAIRoundtable

Introduction by Erica Southgate & Sarah Howard

“Artificial intelligence will shape our future more powerfully than any other innovation this century”

AI definition: The ability of a machine to perform a task that is ‘intelligent’: analytic, humanized intelligence and human.

Being intelligent is (2×2 matrix) thinking humanly, thinking rationally, acting humanly, acting rationally (Russel & Norvig, 2010)

Me: Assumes that humans are intelligent!!!! We actually don’t program computers to think like humans – we take the best parts and leave out the worst parts.

The Education, Ethics and AI (EEAI) framework (Southgate, Blackmore, … et al)


Erica Southgate wants democratic discussion about the ethics of AI.

Me: Question for Erica – how would that happen?

Just a taste of approximately the 50 people attending

  • Mark Greentree Director of Technology for Learning, NSW Department of Education
  • Nicole, Education for a changing world
  • Karl Maton, University Sydney part of the Legitimation Code Theory http://legitimationcodetheory.com/home/theory/
  • Erica Southgate, University of Newcastle
  • Sarah Howard, University of Woollongong
  • Belinda Emms, Federal STEM
  • Chris Roberston, Principal Aora College NSW DoE virtual school
  • Simon Buckingham-Shum, UTS

Google presentation Paul Hutchins

Good examples of AI:

  • Computer learning to play Paddleboard (vid)
  • Google Deepmind AI teaching itself how to walk (Tech Insider) (vid)
  • Google voice to text search, Google Translate, Google Photos facial recognition and object recognition.
  • Google Maps is now being launched with AR
  • Socially Aware Robot System (SARA) (vid)
  • Rapport Aware Peer Tutor RAPT (vid)
  • Google Duplex: Google assistant booking a haircut (vid)
  • Google app Teachable Machine -> recognises actions and user can specify consequent actions
  • Google app Quick Draw -> recognise drawn object
  • Google app Draw Along AR -> helps people learn from videos about drawing
  • Auto ML -> Google’s consumer solution for drawing upon and designing with AI

NSW Dept of Education, Jason La Greca, Microsoft

Microsoft Education Learning Tools: https://www.onenote.com/learningtools

  • Immersive Reader will remove background, and read in the native language, can change speed, text size, background colours, highlight different grammar elements, provide definitions and associated pictures, can translate to other languages etc.
  • Onenote has an integrated mathematics recognition and solver engine.

Case example: Dr David Kellerman UNSW first year mechanical engineering convenor used O365 Question feature AI to train the O365 about the sorts of questions that students ask, and builds a repository. Big increase in in the number of questions that students asked. Zero configuration on the part of the academic. Used QR codes on workbooks to provide hints or complete solutions to specific questions. Was able to pull from video recordings of lectures to pull out lecturer response. All ran within O365 Teams. Was able to learn about where students were struggling and then provide them with personalised study packs.

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Using technology to assist students with autistic conditions

Autism Spectrum Australia defines autism as “a lifelong developmental condition that affects, among other things, the way an individual relates to his or her environment and their interaction with other people” (Autism Spectrum Australia, 2019, para. 1). They define the main areas of difficulty as “social communication, social interaction, and restricted or repetitive behaviours and interests” (para 3), noting that people on the autism spectrum may also have intellectual impairment or learning difficulties.

Conceptually, there are two related but different ways that technology may be used to assist students with autism. The first is to use technology in a way that helps to compensate for developmental differences in social and cognitive skills and understanding. An example of using technology to compensate for underdeveloped skills is using augmented reality to help people with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) to navigate to locations across a city (see the study by McMahon et al, 2015, which showed that AR was more effective than paper or Google maps to assist navigation for people with ASD, n=3). The second is to use technology to help develop social and cognitive skills and understanding. While we should be striving to use technology to compensate for learning deficits, the position taken in this post is that ideally we should be aiming to use technology in a developmental (educational) way as far as possible.

Another important point to remember is that technology is in many cases not the source of the solution, it is the mediator of the solution. Technology is often a great amplifier, and depending on how it is used it may either enhance learning or render it meaningless. So critically, we need a) technology developers to deeply understand the nature of autism and the needs of people with ASD, b) teachers to know how to accurately evaluate apps, c) teachers to know how to appropriately integrate from a pedagogical perspective and  according to the specific context. The most important part of this context is the individual students involved, because there are a wide variety of autistic conditions that educators may attempt to support.

One way that technology can be used to assist students with autistic conditions is through the use of iPads. As Autism Spectrum Australia explains in their iPads fact sheet (which includes an app assessment rubric) there are numerous iPad apps that facilitate augmentative and alternative communication (ACC). For instance, Proloquo2Go enables sentences to be constructed using symbols which can then be spoken aloud by the iPad. The Learning App Guide to Autism and Education provides an overview of various apps to support:

  • behaviour – scheduling and work management, choice making, visual calendars, timers, counters, personal care, speech prompts, reward systems
  • social skills – social comprehension including video-based scenarios, narrative and comic strip creation, attention development
  • literacy – phonics, spelling, sight words, writing, reading comprehension, narrative creation and storytelling
  • language – asking questions, semantic features, categorisations, vocabulary, parts of speech, sequencing, conversation, interpretation
  • senses – understanding cause and effect, visual calming, visual alerting, physically calming, auditory calming, general relaxation
  • emotions – emotional vocabulary, emotional regulation, books about emotion, mood diary, body language and emotions, facial features and emotion
  • creativity – photos with text and voice, story and book makers, storyboards, animation tools, screencasting
  • early language – early language games, verbal imitation, first words, early comprehension.

Autism Spectrum Australia indicates that these apps are particularly beneficial for people with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) because they often support visually based learning, often can be customised to the individual student in terms of content, promote independent learning while offering immediate feedback, provide a touch interface for those with poor fine-motor skills, and is socially acceptable. However, issues include the fact that students and staff may need technical support, the devices can be broken if misused by children, may not include best practice pedagogically, and educators need time and support to orient and upskill themselves to the use of the technology.

Another advantage of many of these apps is that they can be used on mobile devices to support daily living and independence for people with autism spectrum disorders (see Bereznak et al, 2012). A meta-analysis has shown that the anywhere-anytime access afforded by mobile devices makes them particularly suited and effective in assisting with self-management capabilities of people with ASD (Chia et al, 2018).

There have been many other ways that technology has been used to assist students with ASD. A review of technology-mediated interventions including the use of desktop computers, robotics, virtual reality, and so on, by Grynszpan et al (2014), found an average effect size of d = 0.47 (which was a significant, though moderate effect, n=14 studies with pre-post and randomised control). Interestingly, there was a negative correlation found between the intervention durations and the studies’ effect sizes. For a wide variety of technologies to assist learners with special needs (including Autism) categorised by need area, try the Understood.org Tech Finder.

Immersive Virtual Reality is another technology showing benefits for people with ASD. By offering simulations of real-world situation in a safe and controlled environment students can practice their skills without real-world distractions (Parsons, 2011). For instance, VR has been used to help young adults with high-functioning autism to develop their social skills, social cognition and social functioning (Kandalaft, 2013). The cost of VR technology is reducing considerably. For instance an Oculus Go can be purchased for around $AU300, or people can use Head Mounted Displays (HMDs) or even Google Cardboard with their mobile phones to engage with VR learning experiences. This makes integrating VR into educational settings more feasible from a technical perspective. A recent systematic review involving 31 studies concluded moderate effectiveness when using VR to treat children with ASD (Mesa-Gresa et al, 2018).

The significant challenge is to integrate VR in a way that makes a difference to real world classroom outcomes for students with autistic conditions (Parsons, 2011). As well, research in the area of VR, as well as other technologies, is characterised by a limited number of high quality studies that differ quite substantially in terms of the technology used, the type of application, and the participant characteristics (Bradley & Newbutt, 2018).

In terms of further research, it will be useful to know whether immersive VR technologies across different applications and participants may be able to enhance student focus, remove distraction, develop social skills such as gesture processing, and so on for people with ASD. Anecdotally, technology addiction is an important issue for people with ASD, who are often fixated on repetitive behaviours and avoid social interaction. There is little research relating to the nature and impact of technology addiction, so this is a potential area for future research investigation. Based on this (admittedly expedient) review,  there was also very little research that explored the effect of creative rather than receptive tasks on learners with ASD. As well, there seems to be a paucity of research examining how educators can be effectively supported to use technology when teaching people with ASD. Considering the continually accelerating advancement of technology, these will be interesting and important areas for future investigation.


Autism Spectrum Australia (2019). What is Autism? Available at: https://www.autismspectrum.org.au/content/what-autism

Bereznak, S., Ayres, K. M., Mechling, L. C., & Alexander, J. L. (2012). Video self-prompting and mobile technology to increase daily living and vocational independence for students with autism spectrum disorders. Journal of Developmental and Physical Disabilities, 24(3), 269-285.

Bradley, R., & Newbutt, N. (2018). Autism and virtual reality head-mounted displays: a state of the art systematic review. Journal of Enabling Technologies, 12(3), 101-113.

Chia, G. L. C., Anderson, A., & McLean, L. A. (2018). Use of Technology to Support Self-Management in Individuals with Autism: Systematic Review. Review Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 5(2), 142-155.

Grynszpan, O., Weiss, P. L., Perez-Diaz, F., & Gal, E. (2014). Innovative technology-based interventions for autism spectrum disorders: a meta-analysis. Autism, 18(4), 346-361.

Kandalaft, M. R., Didehbani, N., Krawczyk, D. C., Allen, T. T., & Chapman, S. B. (2013). Virtual reality social cognition training for young adults with high-functioning autism. Journal of autism and developmental disorders, 43(1), 34-44.

Mesa-Gresa, P., Gil-Gómez, H., Lozano-Quilis, J. A., & Gil-Gómez, J. A. (2018). Effectiveness of virtual reality for children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorder: an evidence-based systematic review. Sensors, 18(8), 2486.

Parsons, S., & Cobb, S. (2011). State-of-the-art of virtual reality technologies for children on the autism spectrum. European Journal of Special Needs Education, 26(3), 355-366.

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ICTENSW 2019 Conference

Tech Girls Are SuperherosDr Jenine Beekhuyzen

  • Founder of the Tech Girls are Superheros movement #TGM
  • Series of books that have been distributed
  • Jenine says research indicates girls opt out of STEM at 6 years old (Jenine thinks that it is often younger than this)
  • Therefore, we need to address the issue of girls in STEM early
  • Doesn’t really care about the acronym (STEM, STEAM etc)
  • Nearly 40% of Y6 and Y10 students did not reach proficient standard in ICT literacy (ACS Digital Pulse 2015 report)
  • “Equality is the goal, equity is the process”
  • Research findings:
    • Boys are more influenced by teachers, and girls are more influenced by parents.
    • Stereotype threat – being at risk of confirming, as a self-characteristic, a negative streotype about one’s social group (Steele & Aronson, 1995)
    • “Gender biases distort the meritocratic evaluation and advancement of students, interventions targeting instructors’ biases and are particularly needed” (Moss-Racusin et al, 2016)
    • Traditional teaching methods will not support STEM instruction, [recommend] an integrated curriculum…. (missed)
    • Out of school STEM experiences can influence career development and STEM persistence
    • Counterspaces – importance of contexts in facilitating processes that results in wellness among marginalised individuals (Case & Hunter 2012)
    • The single sex environment is not as important as the pedagogy in influencing girls attitude (Hughes, 2013)
  • Nearly half (48%) of the computer programming jobs will be made redundant in the next 5 years (could not read source).
  • Search for the next tech girl hero competition: https://www.techgirlsmovement.org/

Cybersecurity in the curriculum – Nicky Ringland from Australian Computing Academy

Green screening: Skill enabled creativity – Rolf Kolbe

  • Resources for presentation available at: http://bit.ly/ictenswkolbe, http://bit.ly/pptanimations
  • Greenscreen Tools: Touchcast Greenscreen, Greenscreen by DoInk ($4), Veescope
  • In iMovie whenever you drop one video over another it automatically inserts the greenscreen effect (can choose bluescreen)
  • Place an image or a video as the background, and then as you record or import a video, any green will show the background image or video. Can have more than one video overlayed (so different greenscreen foreground videos) and can also resize and rotate the foreground videos. Only need a bit of background to be green because has tools to crop out non-green or unwanted video.
  • Powerpoint:
    • you can storyboard as a PPT, record narration as you move through the slides, then save as video. Then any green in the Powerpoint can be used for greenscreen video.
    • Powerpoint has picture format tool – remove background with tool to select and customise – quite efficient and simple.
    • Can animate image using PPT animation features, eg path animation, with green background, and then have an animation that can be overlayed over another background.
    • Powerpoint can save as MP4, MOV, PNG, etc
    • Note need to update PPT to most recent version.
  • Could also do an ExplainEverything using a green screen background for an explanation and then overlay on video
  • Also check https://www.bitmoji.com/ to make personalised emojis.

Smart Garden using Micro:Bit – Martin Levens (ACARA)

  • Micro:Bit has a USB-C, Reset, Bluetooth Low Energy transmitter, accelerometer, etc See https://microbit.org/
  • Several different ways to code the Micro:bit, but primary way is using the http://makecode.microbit.org interface.
  • The web-based emulator can do pretty much everything that the physical device can, meaning children can code at home.
  • Can search code elements.
  • There are Excel plugins for the Microbit.
  • Can also measure voltage, which is a way to measure the water content of the soil, and therefore can write a program to water the plant when the reading is below a certain level.

What a great conference!!

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Reviews of “Design of Technology-Enhanced Learning – Integrating Research and Practice”

SinceDoTEL the release of my book “Design of Technology-Enhanced Learning – Integrating Research and Practice” in August 2017, several reviews are starting to emerge. Fortunately, most of them are highly favourable. Some reviews to date include:

The book also received the Association for Educational Communications and Technology (AECT) 2018 Design and Development Outstanding Book Award. In their awarding statement, when compared to the several other entries, the five reviewers concluded:

This volume does the best job of pulling together knowledge in the field toward textured but practical guidance. Bower does not overstate what is known or veer into theoretical determinism. The content is excellently grounded in theory and provides excellent examples from practice. It is very well-structured and well-written. Impactful! Faulty could use this as a foundational text in a course for technology for teachers and even for college faculty.

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Collaborative learning in a blended-reality environment

[This post draws from a recent paper published in the British Journal of Educational Technology:
Bower, M., Lee, M. J. W., & Dalgarno, B. (2017). Collaborative learning across physical and virtual worlds: Factors supporting and constraining learners in a blended reality environment. British Journal of Educational Technology, 48(2), 407-430. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/bjet.12435 ]

Offering students flexible and convenient access is a key driver for the use of technology in learning, with online technologies enabling students to continue their work out of the classroom, anytime and anywhere, and to do so collaboratively (Beetham & Sharpe, 2013; Oblinger, 2012; OECD, 2012, 2016). Using rich-media synchronous technologies such as video-conferencing, web-conferencing and virtual worlds, learners can interact with one another and their teachers in real-time to ask questions, discuss issues, and undertake group work activities (Bower, Kenney, Dalgarno, Lee, & Kennedy, 2014). Of these technologies, virtual worlds offer unique educational opportunities in terms of the 3-D representation possibilities and types of learner interactions that they afford (Dalgarno & Lee, 2010). However, there are very few documented instances of using virtual worlds to enable remote and face-to-face (F2F) students to participate in the same classes together, let alone reports of how the design of tasks and of the environment impact upon learning.

In a recently published BJET article, Bower, Lee and Dalgarno (2017) report on a study, conducted as part of the Blended Synchronous Learning project (see http://blendsync.org), that investigated the factors supporting and constraining students’ ability to learn collaboratively in two offerings of a ‘blended-reality’ tutorial class. Video and sound recording equipment captured activity in a F2F classroom, which was streamed live into a virtual world so that remote participants could see and hear an instructor and F2F peers. In-world activity was also simultaneously displayed on a projector screen, with the audio broadcast via speakers, for the benefit of the F2F participants. In this way, the participants in both modes could see and hear one another in order to complete a series of class activities (see Figure 1).

Students in the face-to-face classroom interacting with students in the virtual world

Figure 1. F2F and virtual world students jointly participating in a blended-reality lesson

Survey and interview feedback from students indicated that the majority experienced a sense of co-presence with their peers participating both F2F and via the virtual world. As well, irrespective of participation mode, they generally felt that they were able to effectively create and share resources with one another. However, they tended to find it easier to communicate with others attending in the same mode as them. While the teacher noted the challenge of catering to both remote and F2F learners at the same time as managing the technical aspects of the lesson, students cited a number of benefits of the blended-reality approach, including enhanced access to learning opportunities, enabling the exchange of ideas and promoting higher levels of engagement than traditional approaches. Remote students additionally cited a stronger sense of being in the F2F classroom, increased willingness of shy people to participate, and transcending of physical constraints such as cost and space.

A variety of pedagogical, technological and logistical factors impacted upon learning. From a pedagogical perspective, tasks that encouraged peer interaction and provided direction about ways to interact were found to be helpful and enabling, whereas repetition of instructions between cohorts and not knowing how to engage in activities detracted from the learner experience. Students observed that the multiple communication channels offered via the virtual world supported their learning, but technical issues such as erratic audio and video streaming interfered with it. Logistically speaking, making learning more accessible and having extra learning spaces to work with were seen as distinct advantages of the approach, yet the inability to communicate one-on-one with students participating through the other mode was perceived as a disadvantage.

In the future, advances in haptic interfaces, real-time 3-D rendering, holographic telepresence, wearable technologies and immersive virtual reality may mean that blended-reality learning becomes a part of mainstream teaching. These advances notwithstanding, the way in which educators manage the pedagogical, technological and logistical issues, as detailed in Bower et al. (2017), will have a critical impact upon the quality of the student learning experience.


Beetham, H., & Sharpe, R. (2013). An introduction to rethinking pedagogy. In H. Beetham & R. Sharpe (Eds.), Rethinking pedagogy for a digital age: Designing for 21st century learning (2nd ed., pp. 1–15). New York: Routledge.

Bower, M., Kenney, J., Dalgarno, B., Lee, M. J. W., & Kennedy, G. E. (2014). Patterns and principles for blended synchronous learning: Engaging remote and face-to-face learners in rich-media real-time collaborative activities. Australasian Journal of Educational Technology, 30(3), 261–272. http://dx.doi.org/10.14742/ajet.1697

Bower, M., Lee, M. J. W., & Dalgarno, B. (2017). Collaborative learning across physical and virtual worlds: Factors supporting and constraining learners in a blended reality environment. British Journal of Educational Technology, 48(2), 407-430. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/bjet.12435

Dalgarno, B., & Lee, M. J. W. (2010). What are the learning affordances of 3-D virtual environments? British Journal of Educational Technology, 40(6), 10–32. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-8535.2009.01038.x

Oblinger, D. G. (2012, May/June). IT as a game changer. EDUCAUSE Review, 11–24. Retrieved from http://net.educause.edu/ir/library/pdf/ERM1230.pdf

OECD. (2012). Connected minds: Technology and today’s learners. Paris: Author. http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/9789264111011-en

OECD. (2016). Skills for a digital world: 2016 Ministerial Meeting on the Digital Economy Background Report. Paris: Author. Retrieved from http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/5jlwz83z3wnw-en

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Learning technology organisations and forums

Recently I had cause to ask my great colleague and friend Mark Lee for some links to learning technology organisations and forums. Mark is a prolific writer and probably the best connected academic that I know. The astounding list that he compiled is appended below in case it is useful to others. The list demonstrates the extensive but also bifurcated work in the learning technology field.

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Typology of Web 2.0 technologies

Web 2.0 technologies offer substantial opportunities for educators to enhance communication, productivity and sharing within their classes (Brown, 2010; Greenhow, Robelia, & Hughes, 2009). In order to capitalize on Web 2.0 technologies educators need to first understand the sorts of Web 2.0 technologies that are available and their various features (Redecker, Ala-Mutka, Bacigalupo, Ferrari, & Punie, 2009). Typologies of Web 2.0 technologies have been previously suggested (Boulos, Maramba, & Wheeler, 2006; Crook, 2008; Franklin & Van Harmelen, 2007). While many of these typologies included valuable and sensible categories of Web 2.0 technologies, none of them appear to result from any sort of systematic analysis or review.

My recent study used structured typological analysis techniques to derive a typology of Web 2.0 learning technologies. Over two thousand links were reviewed from online archive sites, educational technology texts, online searches and previous Web 2.0 review papers. This led to identification of 212 current Web 2.0 technologies that are suitable for learning and teaching purposes. The typological analysis then resulted in 37 types of Web 2.0 technologies that were arranged into 14 clusters. A schematic representation of the resulting typology of Web 2.0 learning technologies is shown in Figure 1.

Fig1 Typology of Web2 Technologies.png

Figure 1. Typology of Web 2.0 technologies

The types of Web 2.0 learning technologies, their descriptions, pedagogical uses and example tools for each category are described in my recent EDUCAUSE article (Bower, 2015), arranged according to the clusters. Throughout the descriptions the term ‘users’ rather than ‘teachers’ is often applied because students may learn more from being designers with the technology than from teachers preparing and disseminating activities, and ‘users’ encapsulates both of these cohorts. The typological analysis used to derive the typology of Web 2.0 learning technologies has been published in the British Journal of Educational Technology (BJET). See Bower (2016) for further details.


      Boulos, M. N., Maramba, I., & Wheeler, S. (2006). Wikis, blogs and podcasts: a new generation of Web-based tools for virtual collaborative clinical practice and education.
BMC medical education, 6(1), 41.
      Bower, M. (2015). A typology of Web 2.0 technologies. EDUCAUSE. Available at: https://library.educause.edu/resources/2015/2/a-typology-of-web-20-learning-technologies
      Bower, M. (2016). Deriving a typology of Web 2.0 learning technologies. British Journal of Educational Technology, 47(4), 763-777. Available at: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/bjet.12344/abstract
      Brown, S. (2010). From VLEs to learning webs: the implications of Web 2.0 for learning and teaching. Interactive Learning Environments, 18(1), 1-10.
      Crook, C. (2008). Web 2.0 technologies for learning: The current landscape – opportunities, challenges and tensions: BECTA.
      Franklin, T., & Van Harmelen, M. (2007). Web 2.0 for content for learning and teaching in higher education. JISC Available at http://www.jisc.ac.uk/media/documents/programmes/digitalrepositories/web2-contentlearningand-teaching.pdf.
     Greenhow, C., Robelia, B., & Hughes, J. E. (2009). Learning, teaching, and scholarship in a digital age Web 2.0 and classroom research: What path should we take now? Educational Researcher, 38(4), 246-259.
     Redecker, C., Ala-Mutka, K., Bacigalupo, M., Ferrari, A., & Punie, Y. (2009). Learning 2.0: The impact of Web 2.0 innovations on education and training in Europe. Final Report. European Commission-Joint Research Center-Institute for Porspective Technological Studies, Seville.
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