International Perspectives on the Design of Technology-Supported Learning Environments

In recent years, the use of technology for the purposes of improving and enriching traditional instructional practices has received a great deal of attention. However, few works have explicitly examined cognitive, psychological, and educational principles on which technology-supported learning environments are based. This volume attempts to cover the need for a thorough theoretical analysis and discussion of the principles of system design that underlie the construction of technology-enhanced learning environments. It presents examples of technology-supported learning environments that cover a broad range of content domains, from the physical sciences and mathematics to the teaching of language and literacy. The emphasis in this book is not on the design of educational software but on the design of learning environments. A great deal of research on learning and instruction has recently moved out of the laboratory into the design of applications in instructional settings. By designing technology-supported learning environments instructional scientists attempt to better understand the theories and principles that are explicit in their theories of learning. The contributors to this volume examine how factors such as social interaction, the creation of meaningful activities, the use of multiple perspectives, and the construction of concrete representations influence the acquisition of new information and transfer.