The Leading eBooks Store Online
for Kindle Fire, Apple, Android, Nook, Kobo, PC, Mac, Sony Reader...
International Developments in E-learning
. “Moores Law” – heralding a doubling in computing power every 18 months;
. “Fiber law” – offering the ability to double the bandwidth of optic fibers and amplifiers every nine months;
. The increasing ability to store information, which doubles every year; and
. “Metcalfe’s law” – propounding the power of the Internet grows as the square of the number of people that use it. For technophiles, corporate training departments, cash-strapped universities, people living in remote areas, emerging economies seeking to catch up quickly, and governments hoping to achieve educational participation targets, these technological developments have achieved almost iconic status. (Though often with governments focusing on an imagined economy of delivery rather than considering the resources required to deliver e-Learning to a similar level of quality as more conventional forms of education and training).
However there is an alternative view of these technological developments, that many in education and training continue to hold, regarding technology as an irrelevance at best, or even worse as a force which can devalue effective learning. From this perspective, learning is less about comprehension and understanding and more about learning how “to be”.
There is a danger that such positions can become entrenched and the conversations between technophiles and technophobes become more typified by noise than communication. This journal edition is aimed at overcoming such confrontation by shedding some light on the technophile position and by providing arguments and evidence for and against the role of technology in education and training.
In doing so, we are extremely pleased to have access to some of the contributions to Scottish Enterprise’s (SE) 2004 e-LearnInternational conference (www.elearninternational.co.uk). This annual conference is becoming a major event on the circuit and is the outcome of years of work by SE to help promote international dialogue on e-Learning and to have Scottish organizations benefit from this dialogue. Scottish Enterprise has brought together many of the world’s leading experts in the field of learning and technology to produce insights and engage in conversations that only the best conferences in this field have been able to achieve.
The 2004 conference was an excellent example of how practitioners and academics could work together to examine the future of e-learning through a major, international scenario planning exercise, which we report on in the opening paper by Bell and Martin. There is also an excellent invited, philosophical contribution from Gordon Graham on the problems of “futurology”, which provided one of the highlights of the conference and helped ground all subsequent conversations.
As editors we have also been fortunate enough to participate in these events and to have been responsible for organizing the refereed paper tracks for the last two years.We are pleased to have five of these papers from the 2004 conference, coming from authors in Italy, Cyprus, Wales, the Netherlands and Scotland. These papers were all prize-winning contributions to the conference and have been revised and updated for this edition of the journal. Finally, we have included two contributions from Thailand and Australia. We have to thank the authors for their hard work and insights, and for the presenters, participants and group of international experts, whose ideas are also reflected in the edition. Particular thanks have to be extended to Frank O’ Donnell, Charlie Stewart and Mark Bell from the e-Business Group at Scottish Enterprise, who have provided leadership for the e-LearnInternational conferences and have encouraged us to produce this special edition of the Journal.We hope that we have captured some of the intellectual excitement and knowledge-sharing that distinguished the conferences proceedings, and which is often associated with contemporary advances in e-Learning policy, technology and practice.
Professorial Fellow, Edinburgh Business School,
Heriot-Watt University, Scotland, UK
Professor of Management, University of Technology,
Previously published in: Education + Training, Volume 46, Number 6/7, 2004
97 pages; ISBN 9781845441777
, or download in
More from this author
- Technology, Outsourcing & Transforming HR2008US$ 48.95480 pages
- Corporate Reputations, Branding and People Management2006US$ 57.95401 pages
- Academic > Education > Special aspects of education > Moral and religious education > Religion and education. Education under church control > Christian education. Church education > Protestant
- Academic > Education > Special aspects of education > Forms of education > Private school education > Preparatory schools. Preparatory school education
- Academic > Education > Special aspects of education > Education extension. Adult education. Continuing education > Distance education
- Computers > Electronic Publishing